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Revolution Via Technology
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You have to love stories like this one, in which the ubiquity of fast, cheap communication via the internet facilitates dissent and possible reform (via Instapundit):

Ali Shemirani, correspondent for the weekly magazine Assr-e Ertebat (Communications Era), estimated that between 20 and 30 major political websites were active in Iran and most of them were pro-reformist.

With some 20,000 Iranian "web logs," or online personal diaries, also sprouting up, he said, between 50 and 60 have become widely read for their overtly political content.

"Statistics show that these types of sites are growing," Shemirani told AFP. "The government may not be happy about it, but they can't stop it completely."

Of course they can't. No technological innovation is without its negative impact, but this feature of internet communication--the empowerment of dissident voices in autocratic regimes--is often overlooked.

Some dude over here (Thomas Paine) fomented revolution with a few pamphlets in a group of colonies with a fairly low literacy rate and without very good means of distributing printed goods.

Now in Iran there are thousands of Paines who can click a button and disseminate their words to millions of fellow Iranians, and millions more around the world, in an instant.

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