Wael Ghonim, the image of the digital youth?

Egypt is free!

What an amazing 18 days it has been. I’m glad that Egyptians have finally gotten what they wanted and that their conviction and resolution never once wavered throughout the protest. I wish you guys all the best in rebuilding your country to be the bastion of democracy in the region. I hope to visit you one day.

I think what’s also interesting throughout this people’s revolution, is the whole digital aspect of it. From the use of Facebook/Twitter to organize, all the way to the cyberactivism of countless geeks in and out of the country. I think the most obvious example is of Google’s Wael Ghonim, the Head of Marketing for Google Middle East and North Africa who went <a href=”“http://www.itnewsafrica.com/?p=10408”>missing</a> and then was found to have been detained by the regime and eventually released after international and opposition pressure. From a relatively unknown player in the international scene, he has became one of the most recognizable image of the revolution.

Wael Ghonim has lived the good life prior to being involved in the Jan 25 protest. He lived abroad, is wealthy and has a huge villa, but yet he sacrificed all that to be with his people to speak out against tyranny.

I think the appeal and popularity of Wael Ghonim as the revolution’s symbol was because he represents what people wanted to see. A man of elite status sacrificing not only his future but his life to voice out his opposition to something that was morally wrong (tyranny).

To me, he’s someone whom I could really look up to. A geek who did not sit behind the monitor and just type away, but actually stood up and made real change and did not shy away from adversity. As someone who loves technology and have a passion for politics, I could only dream of having 1/10th of his determination, strength and intellect.

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