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Revolution on Hold

China, Iran, Russia – Where Do Revolutionary Ideas Catch On?

The Arab Spring has brought hope to reform-minded people around the globe. What social media and digital communication helped bring about in Arab nations is now spreading to other parts of the world. However, totalitarian regimes have also discovered how the Internet and its tools can be used to reinforce control and oppression.

What are the structural reasons why social networks in Iran, China and Russia have proven less potent as organizing tools than elsewhere? What role can bloggers on the one hand and foreign broadcasters and international media outlets on the other play when it comes to reform movements in totalitarian states? What should we make of western companies who provide the software with which dictators can simply “filter out” reformers?

This panel is presented in cooperation with Deutsche Welle.