It’s well documented how Twitter’s role as an open information source has been hugely influential in the revolutions in Tunisia, Egypt and Libya, to the point where these countries, as well as China, Cameroon and Vietnam, and other places where the freedom of speech is restricted or forbidden, have attempted to block the network to maintain control.
Now a new and very Hitchcock-esque video from international news network France 24, which directly promotes their popular Twitter account, takes a look at the connection between freedom of information and freedom of expression on the internet, and reminds dictators and controlling governments around the world of one important fact: Twitter is always watching.
The video, developed by ad agency Marcel, is appropriately entitled The Birds.
France 24 broadcasts in three languages – French, English and Arabic – but it’s mainly the latter that led to France24.com breaking audience records in March of this year. Thanks to intense coverage of the revolutions in Egypt and Tunisia on Twitter, France24.com registered 14 million visits and 59 million page views within that month, and more than quadrupled its Twitter following.
The video is pretty dark and ominous, but I think does an excellent job of making a very important point: Twitter is everywhere. And if you’re a despot and/or opposed to freedom of speech, it’s only going to get a lot, lot worse. Which is good news for everybody else.