The revolution may not be televised, but in this Web 2.0 world, it will probably be tweeted, blogged, vodcast, photoshopped, go viral, and end up as a 4chan meme. As G20 protesters gathered on the streets of London yesterday to smash capitalism and angrily shake their fists, many also took out their little red netbooks and began to document every thrilling second of the action. Here’s how the protests unfolded, as seen through social media:
Twitter was once again the tool du jour for up-to-the-second news and insights — and not just for the protestors. The Guardian ran a feed tracking tweets from several of their contributors live on the ground (@ Rowena_Davis: “The financial heart of the uk has been paralysed and filled with coloured flags, meditators, flowers and musicians. Feels like the 1960s.”), as did Sky News, while the Telegraph featured all #G20-tagged tweets on their site.
Protest Groups ran their own Twitter accounts, organising and mobilising protestors, and providing critical instructions:
@ G20Meltdown: “Billy Bragg needs a pick up and lead for his accoustic. And a mic. Much appreciated if anyone can loan him. In 1649 to St Georges Hill….”
@ climatecamp: “Please use the urinals! The queue is quite short at the moment.”
On Facebook, the G20 Meltdown group has been running pretty hot, with almost 4000 members, albeit a lot of flame wars, trolls and spam as well.
Photoblogging sites like Flickr and Twitpic captured plenty of the action: