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Vol 53 No 2

Published 20th January 2012

New technology, new repression

Authoritarian regimes’ use of cellphones is under the spotlight

One of the most striking aspects of last year’s North African revolutions was the use of new technology as a tool for political organisation – and to outwit flatfooted dictatorships. In its final desperate days, President Mohamed Hosni Mubarak’s regime shut down the internet to stop its opponents mobilising hundreds of thousands of Egyptians. This worsened the crisis, almost closing down the economy.

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