Sandra Gonzalez-Bailon the Spanish Sociologist editor of the OII-edited journal Policy and Internet. Gonzalez-Bailon specializes in how online networks influence exposure to ideas and political debates, and how the internet technologies shape the flow of information. Gonzalez-Bailon published an article on Aljazeera stating, “Under the slogan “Real Democracy Now”, the protests [Spain May 2011] mobilised tens of thousands of people of all ages and affiliations, demanding better forms of political representation. Many protesters proclaimed in their placards that the Spanish Revolution was coming, a prophecy soon turned into a trending hashtag in Twitter and reverberating fast across the galleries of social media. …In the rare context of mass mobilisations, online networks behave exceptionally well: they are fast and efficient in transmitting information and spreading awareness. But they cannot do much to help a mass movement articulate their aims: they give expression to a cacophony of voices but when the lights of the protest go out, all these opinions fall like confetti after a party. …Can social media transform bursts of political activism into stable forms of participation? …Otherwise, their revolutionary message will be written on wet sand.”


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