Saturday, September 26, 2015

Negar Mottahedeh

Negar Mottahedeh is the author of #iranelection: Hashtag Solidarity and the Transformation of Online Life.

From her Q & A with Jadaliyya:

Jadaliyya (J): What made you write this book?

Negar Mottahedeh (NM): Writing ‪#‎iranelection was for me about the witnessing of a sea-change brought about in our life as global citizens by an epic solidarity around the first long trending global hashtag in 2009. No social media platform had seen masses of people from all over the world engage one another about something that happened in a country that was largely foreign to many of them. What I saw was people from the remotest corners of the world, like Alaska, to the most populated cities in China and the United States, participate in a people’s uprising by collaborating around the hashtag #iranelection and transmitting time sensitive information about what was happening in Iran using this hashtag.

J: What particular topics, issues, and literatures does the book address?

NM: In the aftermath of the 2009 Iranian Presidential election, there was a global uprising online and on the ground in Iran in response to the demand by the Iranian people to have a recount of the vote. Millions believed that their vote was never counted. The state denied the free expression of this movement in Iran, dictated an end to the protests, and actively engaged in a violent suppression of the voices of the people. Hundreds died and thousands were imprisoned.

Hundreds of thousands of subscribers on Twitter engaged the hashtag #iranelection for over a year to reclaim the vote of the Iranian people and to protest and record the violence of the state against its own. Flickr, Yfrog, Twitpic, and YouTube became the extensions of this act of witnessing. In the book I show how...[read on]
The Page 99 Test: #iranelection.

--Marshal Zeringue