Egyptian Citizen Journalists Nominated for Reporters Without Borders Netizen of the Year Award

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In 2011, as state TV broadcast images of a sunset over the Nile and empty bridges just a stone’s throw from an ongoing battle in Tahrir Square, independent media took it upon itself to tell the real story. Alongside well-established TV channels and newspapers, a new player emerged in an attempt to document the Egyptian uprising, as it unfolded. Mosireen, a collective of citizen-journalists began by collecting videos, photos and eyewitness accounts of the first 18 days of Egypt’s uprising. Since then, their YouTube channel has gone on to become the most watched non-profit Egyptian channel globally, celebrated their two year anniversary, and today they have been nominated by Reporters without Borders for its Netizen of the Year award.

As a collective, Mosireen has been keenly aware of Egypt’s low Internet penetration rates. Rather than simply post their videos online in an attempt to influence the global narrative, Mosireen took their work back to the same place it started – the Egyptian streets. Met with much resistance, they staged public screenings of human rights abuses, whether during the military-led transition after Mubarak’s fall, or under Egypt’s first democratically elected president, in busy streets and squares, challenging the state’s narrative of accounts.

They also provide training and workshops on filming, editing and social media, to expand Egypt’s circle of citizen journalists, and recently crowdfunded their way to $40,000 in an attempt to continue their nonprofit efforts.

In their own words:

“Mosireen is a non-profit media collective in Downtown Cairo born out of the explosion of citizen media and cultural activism in Egypt during the revolution. Armed with mobile phones and cameras, thousands upon thousands of citizens kept the balance of truth in their country by recording events as they happened in front of them, wrong-footing censorship and empowering the voice of a street-level perspective.”

View more of Mosireen’s work below, responses to it, and vote for them here.

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