Last August, when I was working on a story for Online Journalism Review about activists using technology to organize protests in Egypt, I made the mistake of focusing too much on blogs. One of the people I interviewed, Alaa Abd El Fattah, was quick to pounce on me for asking about blogs and only blogs, when Egyptians were using so many other means to organize.
“How important do you think blogs have been in helping give the opposition in Egypt a platform?” I asked Alaa via email back then.
“The web has been very important — not necessarily blogs,” Alaa shot back. “The interesting story is how all the various websites which includes blogs, forums, independent news pages, official pages of political groups, etc. together became very much the opposition platform. A blog is a piece of software, focusing on them and ignoring other similar pieces of software is ridiculous…But since this is what gives you reporters your kicks I’ll bite and answer your questions as if the web consists of nothing but blogs.”