I think it’s very important to say that my article was written back in the summer well before this has happened. I’ve been as dumbstruck as everybody else by what’s happened in the Middle East. And I would love to kind of - I mean, people are going to do that over course of the next months and years, just to try and figure out what exact role - what exact role did these new tools play in shaping these uprisings?
But I can’t look in the past at social revolutions and see examples of cases where people had a problem under - under dire circumstances of getting lots of people together to voice their concerns, right? I mean, in East Germany, a million people gathered in the streets of Berlin. They were - the percentage of people in East Berlin in East Germany who even had a telephone in 1989 was 13 percent, right?
So, I mean, in cases where there are no tools of communication, people still get together. So I don’t see that as being a - in looking at history, I don’t see the absence of efficient tools of communication as being a limiting factor on the ability people to socially (organize).”—
Malcolm Gladwell tells Fareed Zakaria on CNN that he remains a social media skeptic.copyeditor)
Gladwell. Listen up. The point is not that one must have internet-based social networks in order to revolt. The point is that Internet-based social networks are a helpful asset in your revolution-planning toolbox, along with international support, incredible unrest, a willingness to risk your life and livelihood, etc.