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How social media took us from Tahrir Square to Donald Trump

To understand how digital technologies went from instruments for spreading democracy to weapons for attacking it, you have to look beyond the technologies themselves.
by Zeynep Tufekci

1. The euphoria of discovery
As the Arab Spring convulsed the Middle East in 2011 and authoritarian leaders toppled one after another, I traveled the region to try to understand the role that technology was playing. I chatted with protesters in cafés near Tahrir Square in Cairo, and many asserted that as long as they had the internet and the smartphone, they would prevail.

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