Not only has technology been a means of sharing information instantaneously around the world, but it has also had an important role in shaping youth everywhere. Technology has shined a light on many injustices and has helped pave the way for their elimination in many Middle Eastern countries where corruption and political scandals have run ramped. It has also elicited political change and has greatly impacted the world in which we live in today.
The internet (specifically social media) has been a catalyst of change throughout the Middle East. With millions of users on sites such as Facebook and Twitter, information is able to spread quickly and reach millions of people instantaneously. This has helped to shape global rights and involve countries around the world with each others affairs. Countries that have previously experienced dictatorship and limited freedoms are now able to connect through the internet to elicit change. This has been particularly easy because the internet is hard to control, word spreads quickly, and much anonymity exists. From planning protests to revealing corruption, the internet has really helped to reshape the Middle East in the last decade.
A wave of protests within the Middle East have been partly attributed to the rise in technology. Social Media has been utilized throughout the Middle East, including the protests during the 2011 Egyptian revolution that were organized through mass social media and the Facebook page “We are all Khalid Said” .
Not only has the outreach affected citizens in the Middle East, but news of corruption, violence, and what is going on in the Middle East are now able to be broadcasted throughout the world. Exposing brutality and political corruption has elicited change from the outside world. Even if countries begin to ban internet and other technology, the rest of the world is still able to see. Internet blockage is typically not even an issue because of all the other problems that arise from shutting down all modern technology. This was seen in the Egyptian ‘blackout’, which didn’t last long because commerce within the country was basically at a standstill.
Technology has really increased the Western world’s knowledge about the region and has increased their involvement in it. It is particularly important to journalists, whose main way of getting news from that region depends upon blogs, personal accounts, and social media websites. It is here that journalists can use this information to reveal events in the Middle East to the rest of the world.
This increase in knowledge has strengthened US ties within the region as well. The United States has voiced its opinion about freedom and government in the Middle East. We have also shared beliefs with many Middle Eastern citizens, especially the youth, which see violence and corruption as a major roadblock towards freedom. As Secretary Clinton noted about advancements of ties in the Middle East, “It is a chance to advance our shared goal of security, stability, peace, and democracy, along with prosperity for the millions of people in this region”. In recent years, the U.S. has done much to help the innocent people of the region overcome corruption and elicit change.
It is the youth of the Middle East that have really established and maximized the so called ‘technological revolution’. Since the Middle East is experiencing an enormous ‘youth bulge’, there has been an increasing number of youth involved in promoting a prosperous future, involving full freedom and eliminating government corruption. With the internet so easily accessible, youth in the Middle East have been exposed to how the rest of the world lives. Frustration with their injustices has fostered different mindsets in these youth then have previously been had in older generations. These youth have developed into politically informed citizens through the sharing of information via the internet. The youth also differ from their parents and older generations in the fact that they are generally more educated. These things combined have lead to a sort of ‘youth revolt’ in which the ambitions of living in a free country have driven the youth to take action. Their determination has raised awareness throughout the Middle East and has already accomplished much change.