A View from Egypt

The best aspect of the article on Digital Citizenship in Egypt was its discussion of generations. It is noted that a generation is a very diverse grouping, more so than other fairly broad ones like social class, and that they are capable of achieving “actuality” where they realized they have similar best interests and work towards those interests.

The youth of Egypt are a generation to keep an eye as far as making social change. Compared to the rest of the countries around them, more young Egyptians have access to computers and the internet and are computer literate. More people being able to access blogs, social media, and other types of media is crucial because it can lead to new ideas as well as discussion, and the people of Egypt have shown that they are especially adept at discussion. The article mentions a few young people who were active on chat rooms or social network sites and states that the majority of people in that demographic use the internet to access alternative sources of news on events. The youth of Egypt are using the internet to dodge the censorship that was and is still present in their country.

Several of the people who have access to the internet become activists forming blogs or Facebook pages such as the page of the We Are All Khaled Said group. This is a great step for the dissemination of information and mobilizing people but as evidenced by some of the stalemate on social justice issues it is not enough. The article mentions that about 58% of the youth in Egypt can access a computer and 52% of those can really use one. That means that only about 30% of the youth in Egypt have reliable access to this information. More effort needs to be put into giving access to the internet so that more of the youth can get involved in these movements. Some sort of computer literacy program, maybe not in the universities but maybe through some activist organization, could really help the cause.

A View from Egypt