"Where is my vote?" I am not sure where the votes of the disgruntled losers of the Iranian election are, but I doubt that they are in Twitter. Perhaps this view is mistaken, perhaps the way they recast their ballot is through Twitter, and one would think that the pretty young females with makeup and jewelry cast their real ballots when they held up signs in Tehran, in English, for foreign news photographers.
What is even less clear is whether they are saying anything much in Twitter. Some journalists think they see a "new stage in the evolution of social media," in the form of the "use of Twitter in Iran" (largely mistaking Twitter for Iran with in Iran), and even claim that "information is flooding out of the country - on Twitter" (see "Tweets from Tehran: The use of Twitter in Iran is a new stage in the evolution of social media," by Ashley Terry, Global News June 15, 2009). The question we should ask ourselves is: what information and what is the nature of this "flood"?
Personally, I have seen very little in the way of actual events being reported, and when they are, they are retweeted (repeated) hundreds of times over for almost an entire day. There is enormous volume, and little content. Hanson Hosein, director of digital media at the University of Washington, wrote "I'm having a hard time filtering through #iranelection, beyond the re-tweets and second-hand information passed around by Twitterers outside the country....We can't take [tweets] at face value. It can be quite dangerous. We should be doing as much fact-checking as possible." Michael Crowley also wrote, "One thing that really bothers me about these twitters and first-hand accounts posted on blogs is that there's no way to verify them; I've seen several that either seemed suspect or turned out to be false." Similarly, another blogger observed that, "If you, as an average news consumer, relied on Twitter you might believe all sorts of things had happened, which simply hadn't, running a high risk of being seriously misled about events on the ground. You might at best, have simply been confused. You probably wouldn't have thought Ahmadinejad enjoys much popular support at all"
Not only does Twitter allow Americans to engage in participant voyeurism, it allows them to create the "news" about Iran for Iranians themselves, and apparently making it up as they go along. Indeed, anyone can be an Iranian in Twitter, and in fact all are being encouraged to "become" Iranian as in this other vastly over-repeated tweet:RT help protect Iranian tweeters by changing your timezone to GMT+3:30 and location to Tehran
The problem as we see is that when everybody is in Iran, nobody is in Iran.
Link to previous thread, soon-to-be closed.