Social Media's Democratizing Potential

By: Hassan Skouri  

Citizen journalism has hustled and amplified news as well as information production, consumption together with circulation on a massive scale. Thanks to modern smart phones, citizens’ daily occurrences ranging from mundane encounters with other laymen, public officials, or governmental bodies have made their way into social media on a large scale. In accordance, public members’ woes besides their worries and concerns get broadcast, enrich, and saturate social media’s content incessantly. However, this article contends that such unaccustomed usage is not without any consequences. Ever since the Arab Spring tumults, both governments and common people alike grasped social media’s weight. On the one side, social members have become more daring. They are more likely to record and share their mishaps as well as positive experiences. On the other side, governmental authorities have grown more alert about citizens’ posts on social media networks. Former incidents show that as the latter officials are becoming more responsive to citizens’ claims, the former agents are growing more uninhibited despite newly-adopted laws. The running paper seeks to find out not only what usages present-day individuals employ, but also the implications as well as the consequences behind such fresh utilization. Specific focus is geared towards figuring out if this immense involvement with social media entails any democratization or political effect(s). To respond to the study’s questions, the researcher delivered a questionnaire via several communication avenues. Findings indicate that contemporary netizens handle social media together with instant messaging applications in totally innovative ways.

Media Theory
Paper Presentation in a Themed Session

Hassan Skouri

University Professor, Language and Communication, Ministry of Higher Education, Morocco