A new country: Facebookstan, Twitterstan & Wikileakistan

February 9, 2011

For those who have not been following the back story of Egypt and Tunisia, here it is in a nutshell: Their governments were led by small groups of people who were extremely rich, corrupt, non-transparent, and violent and did not represent the people.
The people in turn were poor, deprived of basic rights, lacked basic services and, most importantly, were ignorant of what was going on around them and in the world.
This setup was very comfortable for the authorities until a new element entered the equation: the Internet, which connected citizens to the outside world.
Because of the Internet, the values of governance, human rights and freedom are global and non-negotiable. There are no more half-corrupt governments or half-corrupt officials. They are either corrupt or not, transparent or not.
As a result, the information vacuum, often created by the government, becomes very visible. If the authorities do not fill it with the correct information, others will – whether it is the likes of organizations, with firm agendas, such as Al-Jazeera, or ordinary citizens.
The new reality of connectivity is creating a new landscape of information, and as a result a new global citizenry.
It is creating a public that is informed and knows what it needs. A public that is not afraid of fighting for its right to live in dignity, prosperity and freedom. A public that is intolerant of poor governance.
This reality unites all of us in one country. This country is called Facebookstan, Twitterstan – or, even better — Wikileakistan.
This new country is not united by a dictator or by borders; it is united by the values of governance and citizen values around the world.
The global citizens of this country now all have the same high expectations of their governments. At the same time, they are all reporting on the developments in their lives and are comparing notes.
This new reality places a lot more pressure on governments to meet the new standard of good governance. A standard that is set by everyone through Facebook, Twitter and Wikileaks. A standard that does not tolerate any shortcomings, simply because nothing can be hidden anymore.
The people created this new reality, and had a transitionary period to embrace it. This new reality minimized the differences between the public’s aspirations in various parts of the world.
In the future, or soon, it will also eradicate the differences between governments and their standards of governance.
The challenge is now for the governments to adapt. This requires an understanding of the new reality and good governance, and will require them to act fairly and justly. Unlike the past, governments can no longer hide behind history, revolutionary legacy or external threats.
Thanks to the Internet and social networks, the public is well aware of governance, and in most case they can judge which entities or developments are dangerous, and which are not.
Similarly, a corrupt official is a corrupt official, whether he was a war hero in the past or not, a revolutionary or not, the people expect from him to do what he was appointed to do.
The good news for the people is that there is no going back. The more connected our mobile phones and computers are, the better our lives will be.
The bad news for corrupt governments is that life has changed forever. Those who hold or seek government posts solely for their personal gain will soon realize that it is not worth it anymore. They will be held to account, and should start looking for other jobs.
Newly empowered global citizens are the future, and leaders need to take notice. The universal values of good governance, transparency, human rights and freedoms will soon be the code of conduct for any government that wants to stay in power.

    sarah says:

    thank u for ur work and it is a good essay and i am with u in all u said but just i think united state make all these revolution and if they didnt want that no one can change any regem

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