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The Scary World That Is Arabic Twitter | Natasha Tynes

February 19, 2015 7:16 PM
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The Scary World That Is Arabic Twitter | Natasha Tynes

As an independent journalist who contributes to various organizations inside and outside the U.S., Twitter is my virtual newsroom. It is where I get story ideas, connect with sources and engage with my readers. On average I spend at least four hours daily on Twitter. As the Islamic State's (ISIS) atrocities started to dominate the news cycle during the mid part of last year, most of my Tweets have become very ISIS-focused. I tweet about their latest actions, and the reactions that followed. As an native Arabic speaker, I spend a big chunk of my time following Arabic hashtags, Arabic-speaking influencers, and news organizations, and boy, let me tell you what I found. The world of Arabic Twitter is a scary one. I'm stunned by the amount of support that ISIS enjoys on Twitter, and mostly among Arabic speakers.

From users with profile pictures of the ISIS flag, to others who hail the group's "triumphs", what's happening in the Arabic Twittersphere is a huge reason for concern.

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