Instant Power to the People or How Michael Jackson killed #iranelection

Twitter iranRecent news events have pushed the popularity and the limits of some networks. In a post I made recently, I mentioned how internet is helping democracy. The reality is that internet puts social pressure on whatever we’re looking at. Yesterday it was Iran elections, today it’s Michael Jackson.

Iran banned Facebook before elections

Right before elections, the Iranian government knew their control would be tested and that social networks would create instant journalists all over the country. That’s why banned Facebook before the votes. Pointless efforts.

Twitter exploded after Iran elections

Nonetheless, “fonctionnaires”, i.e. government workers, are as good as they can be when it comes to understanding new technologies. They probably tried and failed at shutting down Twitter but the result of not having done it was impressive. Twitter has since been overloaded with #iranelection posts and its general popularity is soaring.  The coverage has been massive and even though it’s not changing the actual conflict, foreigners can at least better understand what’s happening over there.

Micheal Jackson died and became more popular than #iranelection

Now in the midst of the Iran elections aftermath, the king of pop dies unexpectedly at age 50. No one saw that coming. Especially not Google who even thought they were being attacked. In a split second, #iranelection lost its leadership position in Twitter’s trending topics and even a week after his death, Michael Jackson still ranks better that #iranelection.

Could it be Ahmadinejad who killed the King of Pop?

I really appreciated Michael Jackson’s music and I have immense respect for his career. I however find it revealing to see how a general popular event can eclipse a social and political growing phenomenon. I guess it shows both sides of the medal, when it comes to the power we have in choosing the information we consume.

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