Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Social media attracts youth to #SudanRevolts

With the start of #SudanRevolts, a hashtag that helps aggregate information on the mass protests spreading across Sudan to topple the regime, many newcomers to twitter have emerged. Over the last one week, Mansoor El-Tayeb, a computer scientist working with children in-need is live-tweeting from Wab-Nobawi, the site of one of the largest protests for two Fridays in a row. El-Tayeb has tweeted on the heavy security presence and marked down their specific location.

“There are many security trucks and tok-toks without plates,” he tweeted.

Another tweep, Zeinab Elrayah, has become very active in encouraging protestors and updating on the situation at the University of Khartoum.

Today she tweeted” our parents are worried about us from arrests and torture, what do they call what we are in? It is the same thing, if not worse.”

Others like Yousif Al-Mahdi, an active tweep, stared a blog to share his thoughts. Two days ago, he wrote down a blog-post called “security tips for #Sudanrevolts” and circulated it widely. The post discusses basic security tips such as not using phone for internet and social media security.
He also divulges into a sensitive topic, arrest.

“You’ll be surprised how little NISS know. Most of the information they have is fabricated or incomplete; provided by informants under pressure to deliver their weekly quotas,” he writes and assures people that if they are not outed as activists to the National Intelligence and Security Services (NISS), they should not mention their affiliations and even if they are known, they should not give information.

Another new blogger, Sara Al-Hassan who started blogging at www.b45.tumblr.com , translated the story of an 11-year-old who arrested by mistake and kept for three days in detention from a Sudanese online forum.

For the past few weeks, Al-Hassan has tweeted and blogged pictures of people from all around the world showing their support for #SudanRevolts. The pictures came in from Ireland, Bolivia, France and many more countries.

Even if youth in different countries sympathize with #SudanRevolts and support with this movement for change, the international media doesn’t feel the same way.

For instant New York Times carried an article called “Dissent Sprouts in Sudan , but it may not be Arab Spring”.
In the article, he quotes a Sudanese protestor who said that he is marching because “we lack freedoms” , but added a quote from John O. Voll , a Sudan specialist at Georgetown University stating that “ unlike protesters in Egypt, Libya or Bahrain, the Sudanese have not been able to occupy anything, not even a single public square.”

Sudanese tweeps and protestors are exuding a lot of optimism about this being the beginning of the end. From the beginning, the hashtag picked was “Sudan Revolts” and in Arabic, the hashtag uses the word “intifada” which translates into revolution in Arabic. All this enthusiasm is not reflected in the media leading protestors to show outrage at international channels like Al-Jazeera, a news channel that was instrumental in covering the Tunisian and Egyptian revolutions.

@SuperMojok tweeted from a protest in Wad-Nobawi in Omdurman that there are
“Signs shown against aljazeera tv coverage #SudanRevolts”

Another Sudanese tweep, Cordoned Sudan tweeted that it is just a matter of time.
People are writing of #SudanRevolts just as little as they were during Tunisia’s initial weeks of uprising. It’s coming.”

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Check out this video about the struggle in Sudan