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Revolution 2.0 [Paperback]

Wael Ghonim
5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (7 customer reviews)
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Book Description

19 Jan 2012

“The power of the people is stronger than the people in power.”

Social media allow ideas to be shared. They are places where people can unite, Revolutions can begin. A new type of Revolution – Revolution 2.0

Wael Ghonim used to be a man unwilling to publicly criticise the Egyptian regime. Like many, he was silenced by the fear of reprisals.

But in January 2011 Wael decided he had seen too much oppression go unchallenged and started a Facebook page calling for the people to protest. It became a rallying-point for revolution and Egyptians took to the streets, while Wael was held by security forces for a horrifying 11 days.

In an attempt to quell the revolution the government moved to shut down the internet, fearful of its ability to mobilise the people. It was too late; the people were no longer afraid of making themselves heard.

Revolution 2.0 is a unique insider’s story from the heart of the Egyptian Spring. Wael Ghonim gives unparalleled insight into why the Egyptian people finally rejected 30 years of oppression and found a voice.


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Revolution 2.0 + On the State of Egypt: What Caused the Revolution + The Arab Spring: The End of Postcolonialism
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Product details

  • Paperback: 320 pages
  • Publisher: Fourth Estate (19 Jan 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0007454368
  • ISBN-13: 978-0007454365
  • Product Dimensions: 15.3 x 2.7 x 23.4 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (7 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 199,055 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Review

‘Witty inversions, such as the subtitle to this book [“the power of the people is greater than the people in power”], encapsulate a philosophy… This is the personal story of the power of the individual harnessed to the power of crowds.’ The Times

About the Author

Wael Ghonim was born in Cairo and grew up in Egypt and Saudi Arabia, earning a degree in computer engineering from Cairo University in 2004 and an MBA from the American University in Cairo in 2007. He joined Google in 2008, rising to become head of marketing for Google Middle East and North Africa. He is currently on sabbatical from Google to launch a non-governmental organisation supporting education and technology in Egpyt.


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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Riveting! 13 April 2012
Format:Paperback
I started reading Revolution 2.0 at 9:30 with my morning coffee. Finished it around 4. I had essays to write and stuff to do but that all went out of the window in face of Ghonim's deeply emotional and engaging account of the Egyptian Revolution. That's pretty important; alot of people seem dissapointed to find out this book isn't a massive historical overview of the revolution but just one man's account of what he saw and the (momentous) part he played in its inception. Infact the most "dramatic" events of the revolution, in Tahrir square between the 28th of janurary onwards, are very sparsely covered because Wael was in prison at the time and saw none of it with his own eyes. It's also important to note even now that the revolution is far from being really over and the book reflects that.

Still, its an extremely inspirational account of how one man with a will and a computer leveraged his knowledge and experience to change his corner of the world. The revolution would have happened with or without Ghonim but it would probably have been an extremely different one if he wasn't involved.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Awesome 24 Feb 2012
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
The story of a great revolution by one of the revolution leader who inspired millions o Egyptians and people around the world. In addition to that the whole profit is going to charity.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
By iZappa
Format:Paperback
A fascinating story told by a man who helped initiate the first protests of the Egyptian revolution. Wael Ghonim tells his story of how he started the "Kullina Khalid Sa'id" Facebook page witch were able to mobilize young Egyptians to take a stand against police brutality, corruption and injustice. The marketing director of Google in the Middle East vividly explains how he and fellow egyptians were able to bring together a generation of young egyptians and unite their grievances in a peaceful way against the regime of former president Husni Mubarak. He gives the readers a glimse insede the Egyptian State Security prisons where he were held for eleven days after being arrested on the 25th of January. And thereafter, how he emerged as a symbol (against his intentions) for the revolution after his release.

This book is not a complete history of the revolution as it unfolded day by day, but the personal experiences of the author who helped organize the first huge anti-regime demonstration on January 25th 2011. Although such a book will clearly be biased, this does not lessen its value as the author clearly states his personal views and motivation.

An inspiring book that highlights an important aspect of the Tunisian and Egyptian revolutions; the Facebook activism.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Why aren't more people raving about this book? 16 Aug 2012
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
A revolution of a country with a population of more than 80 million largely orchestrated by a 29-year-old computer whizz kid from Cairo whose brilliant and moving (and peace-loving) Facbeook "posts" stir the people into action... he finds himself locked up by the security police (blindfolded and handcuffed for 11 days)... but the revolution has already begun...

What a gripping story. Of course Wael Ghonim was not solely responsible for the uprising against Mubarak, but his extremely clever "We are all Khaled Said" page - which used participatory internet techniques such as opinion polls and asking for photos and ideas from its users - helped galvanise the youth of Egypt and encourage them to take to the streets. The revolution, if there was to be one, needed a tipping point, and I think history will record that Wael Ghonim provided at least a very important part of that.

The brutal death of Khaled Said at the hands police thugs in Alexandria ultimately led to big global change... especially when you look at the context of Egypt as being the traditional leader of the Arab world. And Ghonim, with others who worked alongside him (though he was clearly the driving force,) was key to making that happen.

Ghonim, who worked for Google and has a wife and two children, explains the painful personal side to his attachment to a computer screen - his wife in particular is not happy. But he is driven onwards. He is incredibly brave when talking back to the security police and then to figures within Mubarak's regime (who are desperate to have him 'on side' to quell the uprising after the January 25, 2011, street protests).

More than anything though, Ghonim displays a measured approach to his Facebook campaign - with very few histrionics or rants.
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