Power to the Tweeple

by Cat Johnson

Unless you’ve been hiding under a rock, you’ve certainly been hearing, talking and thinking about the election in Iran and the worldwide protests against the questionable outcome. I don’t claim to be an expert on the political climate in Iran, but I am quite experienced and active in social media and the web.

What I’ve witnessed in the last week or two is an entire planet coming to lend support and attention to a dire situation in Iran, and social media has played a crucial role in circulating information, updating supporters and educating us all. The election has been at the top of Twitter’s “Trending Topics” since day one, providing us with a steady stream of updates and information. Many people have adopted a green overlay for their icons to show support, and the Tweets are flying. A similar trend can be seen on Facebook. People are posting, sharing, supporting and learning.

One downside of social media is that misinformation can spread like wildfire (remember #AmazonFail?) but the overwhelming strength of these applications is that they can inform and unify a planetary people by undermining the isolation that keeps us separated.