Social Media’s Role in World Events

Social network is something very unique to our generation. Most of us use this digital tool every single day of our lives, but we may not understand the importance and mark it can leave every moment we use it. Social networks allow us to contact our friends and family instantaneously, while also keeping up with their lives according to viewing their posts in different forms (video, text, likes, etc.). Some of the most important things I have viewed through social media during my life was news regarding the Egyptian revolution and the horrific situation in Aleppo, Syria.

I remember being in 7th grade one Friday morning, and hearing my fellow Egyptian classmates cheering as the ‘revolution’ just occurred and Mubarak resigned. My teacher, in response, discussed the importance of social media for this revolution. Mubarak and the government shut down the Internet, which served as an important location to protesters. Having their voice taken away from them, Twitter and Google teamed up to allow users in Egypt to leave voice messages on their phones and tweet them with a #Egypt. Through these tweets and subsequent events, the Arab Spring revolution began.

Image result for social media egyptian revolution

When the crimes and destruction in Aleppo began a couple months ago, I was completely unaware to what Aleppo really was, and the impact it had on its people and history. I only learned of the situation and updates in Aleppo through using Facebook and reading articles shared and posted by friends. There was hardly any media coverage of the Aleppo situation when it first began. I only see now that it is starting to gather publicity, which is completely unfair to the innocent victims in the civil war. I hope that social media continues to educate millions of people through its articles and sources of accurate information regarding important world events.

Image result for aleppo before and after

Wikipedia – the #1 website all teachers hate

The Internet has been a part of my entire life. I may not have appreciated it when I was young, but as I grew up and examined the world from a screen, I realize I lived a privileged life. Having access to the Internet, especially Web 2.0, gave me the opportunity to read numerous blogs and websites filled with information. One website in particular, Wikipedia, impacted my educational life for the better and worse.

I remember attending middle school, hearing several teachers lecture my class about how Wikipedia was not a credible source. We all complained and demanded a reason, because anyone who had visited the site would understand how grand of a source this website/encyclopedia was. I, with my fellow classmates, learned that anyone could edit the Wiki articles. Rules have changed throughout the years about who can gain access to edit articles, etc; but it still was a fantastic website to learn about new information.

Whether it’s electric eels or the history of the Democratic party, Wikipedia can bring a wide variety of knowledge to anyone who accesses it. I still look forward to visiting this website when I plan on learning about a new topic. A tip for some skeptical users is to analyze an topic in a Wikipedia article and visit the source to see if it is reliable (sources for different points in Wikipedia articles are in the form of footnotes).