Remember those days when you’d wait till the 6pm news to find out what had happened in the world that day, or waited to check your emails at home to hear from your distant friends and family, or even waited by the post to receive a letter from an overseas pen-pal? There was something exciting about the waiting, but that’s something people wouldn’t tolerate anymore. Times have changed, and so has the way we receive our information.
Since the the invention of Web 2.0, the internet has all been about collaboration. People now have a much simpler way of communicating and organising online. News now reaches us almost instantly with the uprise of social networks and, in particular, Twitter. Amateurs have taken over the role that professionals once had, bloggers are the new journalists, and users on social networks are the new photographers.
In China, the internet is often filtered so the government can control what the public can see and care about. The government had the power to alter public opinion and tell them public only what they wanted them to know. A similar scenario is taking place in North Korea too. But Twitter has helped individuals to have a voice. As soon as news breaks, people across the world can hear about it, read it and pass it on to their friends. This is a problem for these governments who want to control their people. Their only solution is to filter entire websites. Twitter has famously been blocked in China at times during difficult times, and the North Korean governement has a similar policy.
As we roll into the future, we must embrace this new connectivity. Together we are stronger and can change the world.