Hariri and Hariri 311.
(photo credit: REUTERS)
by the so-called Arab Spring revolutions, Lebanese politicians have
begun tapping microblogging website Twitter in order to connect with Lebanon's younger generation, Lebanon's English-language Daily Star reported on Thursday.
prime minister Sa'ad Hariri - who tweets under the Twitter handle
@HaririSaad - used the website this past week for daily live question-and-answer sessions. Hariri was able to answer questions from his
followers on issues ranging from the UN Special Tribunal on his father's
assassination to his favorite films, the Star reported.
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The sessions are underlined by the casual way that Twitter connects its
users, with the heavyweight politician beginning one session with the
informal greeting: “hi everyone hope you had a great day, i am online
lets [sic] get started," according to the report.
According to one media analyst speaking with the Star, Lebanese
politicians, including the current Prime Minister Najib Mitaki, are
using social networking websites for publicity, and to connect them with
a "young, educated and urban" population in the country.
Lebanese blogger Imad Bazzi said politicians saw the importance of
social networking after the grass-roots movements on Facebook, Twitter
and elsewhere online helped to fan the flames of the so-called Arab Spring
"[They] finally realized that stepping into this medium might get them more exposure," Bazzi told the Star.