[LINK] Iran elections

stephen at melbpc.org.au stephen at melbpc.org.au
Sun Jun 14 05:14:58 EST 2009

> From:   PoliticsOnline <editor at politicsonline.com>
> Date:   Fri, 12 Jun 2009 15:46:05 -0400 (EDT)
> Subject:   Weekly NetPulse - Smart Mobs and Green Facebook Pictures

Weekly NetPulse - Smart Mobs and Green Facebook Pictures
                  Election Fight Is Online In Iran
June 12, 2009 

The Web's Role In Close-Call Iran Presidential Election 

In Iran, victory in today's presidential election could be determined by 
Facebook, and the 46 million eligible Iranian voters under 30 years old 
who use the social networking site. 

It has been a very close race between the two main candidates, Incumbent 
President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad and former prime minister Mir Hossein 
Mousavi, but it is Mousavi who has the tech-savvy youth on his side. 

The traditional method of using mosques as gathering places and stumps to 
rally political support was used very successfully by President 
Ahmadinejad. Unfortunately for main challenger Mousavi, a government 
organization constantly denied his campaign permission to use Tehran's 
main stadiums for rallies. 

Mousavi supporters resorted to text messages and the Web in an effort to 
organize last minute rallies. Communications technology has empowered 
Iranian citizens. 

Mousavi's supporters organized "smart mobs", a form of social 
organization based on the use of technology, allowing them to reach large 
numbers of people and share information via text messages on times and 
locations of rallies.  

Mousavi supporters also created an online color revolution by posting 
over 6,000 profile pictures on Facebook in Mousavi's signature color 
green, an established symbol of Islam and progress in Iran. 

No incumbent in the history of the Islamic Republic has lost in a re-
election, but the social movement taking place online by Iran's 
progressives may make this election the exception to that historic rule. 

Election updates are available on Twitter: @iran09. Live updates can be 
found from the NYTimes. The election result is expected on Saturday; 
however, if no candidate wins more than 50 percent, a final round will be 
held next Friday.



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