How social media has transformed the world in 2011

There is a series running on Channel 4 News at the moment where people get the chance to say who or what they think transformed the world in 2011.

Below are two linked videos that were shown as part of the main programme last night. The first is Matt Frei, their U.S. Correspondent, who gives his nominations as “The Occupy Movement” and the late Steve Jobs.

Frei talks about the broken social contract between the people and the Government and Business sectors in capitalist countries. He sees the Occupy Movement as a popular uprising by the 99% who feel more and more disenchanted by the disconnection and frankly selfish and self-seeking  actions of the 1%.

But it is the way that the Occupy Movement used social media that he highlights as the key to their importance in changing the world in 2011. That is the reason that his second nomination is a dead man, Steve Jobs. Frei talks about the way that the Occupy protesters used their iPhones and iPads to communicate with each other and use Facebook and Twitter so powerfully to organise and combat the forces that wanted to disperse them. Jobs is seen as the man whose vision in getting technology owned and used so widely gave the people a means to express themselves and most importantly organise.

The second video followed the first in the programme. It was Benjamin Cohen, their Technology Correspondent, talking about the power of social media in 2011 as seen in the role that it played in “The Arab Spring” uprisings, The London Riots and of course The Occupy Movement.

He goes on to discuss the way that Facebook will mature and possibly have its role curtailed by corporate ownership when it goes “public” in 2012 ans also the need for Twitter to become a money making enterprise which may also have spin-off effects.

Whichever way you look at it social media is now a major force in our world and has played a significant part in the events worldwide in 2011 and would be my nomination as the thing that has most changed all our lives this year.

Link to Matt Frei’s video:   cGRTB7qWR24

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