Matthews: Could the spread of information via digital media reduce mass atrocities?

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2 November, 2011
By: Kyle Matthews
Executive director, Montreal Institute for Genocide and Human Rights Studies

Digital media is revolutionizing how private citizens and advocacy groups communicate and share information with the news media and influential political actors. Now, in a matter of seconds, a person halfway across the globe can upload a picture documenting a mass atrocity crime and send it like a missile through cyberspace via Twitter directly to the White House, the Prime Minister’s Office or to CNN or the BBC.

While their is no guarantee that governments will necessarily act on this information, a plethora of journalists are now curating this information to generate news stories, which in turn shapes public opinion and will increasingly put pressure on our elected leaders to invoke the Responsibility to Protect at the United Nations.

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