Infowar in Syria: The Web between liberation and repression

An extended abstract presented at ACM Web Science 2012 (Evanston, IL. USA) – June 23, 2012 by Sofia El Amine, Stéphane Bazan, Sabrine Saad, Addis Tesfa and Christophe Varin – UIR Web Science / CEMAM – USJ Beirut.

In this ongoing research, we propose an interdisciplinary interpretation on why, in the Syrian context, the Web has not yet brought the expected changes witnessed by other countries touched by the Arab Spring. The fact that the Syrian revolt came just after the revolutions in Tunisia and Egypt gave a decisive advantage to the regime. After 12 years of complete black-out, the repressive system gave free access to social networks and microblogging sites to the public in Syria. This move was intended to take a strategic position on these networks to fight a civil Infowar on the protesters. The Web, in its distributed form, is used for online guerilla by Cyber Activists, but well-organized repressive forces can definitely use it as an effective weapon of mass-repression.

 Infowar in Syria: The Web between Liberation and Repression (Full Extended Abstract ACM Web Science 2012)

 Infowar in Syria: The Web between Liberation and Repression (Powerpoint presented at ACM Web Science 2012)



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