Spotlight – Mona Seif

“She doesn’t have some new sentiment-analysis app. She doesn’t consult on finding influencers. She doesn’t claim to know the secrets of viral earned media. And I’m pretty sure she isn’t on a panel at SXSW. All she’s done is put her life, and the future of her country, in the hands of the internet. Mona Seif is a democracy protester in Cairo. Over the past three weeks — with her cellphone, with her Twitter account, with her Facebook social graph — she mobilized compatriots and informed the world about peaceful revolution in Egypt.”

Egyptian Activists Understood Key to Social Media: It’s the ‘Social’
Mona Seif on How Tweeting About Cats Can Later Engage People in Geopolitics
By: Bob Garfield.  See the entire article From Ad Age

Mona Seif is an Egyptian pro-democracy demonstrator, who on February 11, 2011, was at the heart of the revolution on the 18th day of protesting. She was a central figure as Egyptian revolutionaries forced their dictator to stand down, after 30 years of oppressive rule.

The daughter of a political activist who was imprisoned at the time of her birth and the sister of a blogger who was jailed by the Mubarak regime, Mona Seif says nothing could have prepared her for the scale and intensity of the protests.

She explains to Al Jazeera, “I didn’t think it was going to be a revolution. I thought if we could [mobilise] a couple of thousand people then that would be great.

I was angry about the corruption in the country, [about the death of] Khaled Said and the torture of those suspected but never convicted [of being behind] the Alexandria Coptic church [bombing].

I realised this was going to be bigger than we had anticipated when 20,000 people marched towards Tahrir Square on January 25. That is when we saw a shift; it was not about the minimum wage or emergency law anymore. It became much bigger than this, it turned into a protest against the regime, demanding that Mubarak step down and that parliament be dissolved.

On the night later dubbed ‘the battle of the camels’ when pro-Mubarak thugs attacked us, I was terrified. I thought they were going to shoot us all and get it over with. The turning point for me was when I saw the number of people ready to face death for their beliefs.

“The turning point for me was when I saw the number of people ready to die for their beliefs”

Mona will be joining us for two mesh sessions: a panel with Mary Joyce, Jillian York and Sarah Abdurrahman titled “Digital Activism in an Age of Unrest”, and a one-on-one session on how digital activism played a key role in a political uprising that ended the 30-year reign of Hosni Mubarak.

Learn more about her here…

on Twitter

on asafeworldforwomen.org

on YouTube

 

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