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Not being in the Middle East (or ever having been, ever), I have to question that narrative, though it's a common one.

We know the Egyptian government eventually shut down internet access (leading to ingenious hacks, such as the Twitter-voice-recognition-bot Google wrote), but the protests continued unabated.

I'm sure social media had some role to play in the Arab Spring - but the extent of it I feel has been blown out of proportion by technocrats all too ready to self-congratulate.

After all, it feels nicer if you're not building that tool by which millions can breathlessly follow the every move of B-list celebrities. Indeed, wouldn't it be nice if all the hours we spend in air-conditioned offices was actually freedom fighting?




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