Revolution 2.0: Deciphering a cross-national newspaper discourse


  • Patrick Merle Florida State University
  • Jessica El-Khoury Florida State University
  • Mehrnaz Rahimi Texas Tech University



In 2011, civil unrest erupted in Egypt quickly gaining a popular momentum that further led to the demise of President Hosni Mubarak. While certain media initially described the revolt as a Facebook revolution, this study specifically evaluated whether three distinct newspapers of record may have contributed to promulgating such a description. A content analysis of news articles (N = 869) published in The New York Times, The Guardian, and Daily News Egypt revealed that in fact the revolution was rarely attributed to social media and that newspapers varied in their tone of the coverage with Daily Egypt being more neutral. This study suggests that social media facilitated and accelerated the 2011 upheavals.


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