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Posts Tagged ‘John Scott-Railton’

Jan25 Voices: Egyptian Army Has Begun Firing On Pro-Mubarak ‘Thugs’

It really is amazing, in just a matter of days, with no journalism experience, how indispensable UCLA grad student John Scott-Railton has become to staying on top of the news out of Egypt. This brief interview, linked on the Jan25 Twitter feed, with Egyptian journalist Jano Charbel reports news no other American media outlet is carrying right now. After letting pro-Mubarak forces clobber protesters in the streets for the past day, the Egyptian army is finally stepping in to protect protesters in Tahrir Square, firing water cannons and bullets at pro-Mubarak thugs who are trying to enter the square.

Previously on Fishbowl LA: UCLA Grad Student John Scott-Railton Has Become the Twitter Voice of Egypt

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UCLA Grad Student John Scott-Railton Has Become the Twitter Voice of Egypt

Ever since the Egyptian government shut its country’s Internet down in an effort to hinder protests, the world has been clamoring for real time reactions from citizens inside Egypt. Since the Egyptian people can’t tweet at the moment, a UCLA grad student by the name of John Scott-Railton has started doing it for them. 27-year-old Scott-Railton has been traveling to Egypt since 2006, where he has amassed a network of friends–with landlines–who are now providing him quotes and boots on the ground information he can send out over his Twitter feed.

Time has more:

Scott-Railton’s Twitter account lists him as having just over 4,000 followers, but that considerably understates his influence, as his tweets — which he posts at a rate of around 50 a day — are visible to all those who search for information on the protests. Blake Hounshell, managing editor of Foreign Policy Magazine, subscribes to his posts, as do the editors of several other major news publications. And Scott-Railton says that the BBC, NPR, the Los Angeles Times, Al Jazeera and the Wall Street Journal have all reached out to him for analysis or help finding Egyptians to interview. “In years past, the idea was that you could only understand the situation if you were on the ground,” says Sree Sreenivasan, a professor of digital media at Columbia Journalism School in NYC, who has been tracking the developments in Egypt. “What we have learned though is that there is a real role for social media for people who are far away from the action to bring context, understanding and analysis.”

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