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Libya's Online Dating Revolution

Friday, March 04, 2011

WNYC
Mawada.net Mawada.net, an online dating site popular in North Africa has been used by Libya's opposition movement to communicate secretly.

"May your day be full of Jasmine," one online dater in Libya wrote to a woman who's profile he found attractive.

Coded words, from one firey opposition fighter to another.

Libyans fighting the forces of Col. Muammar el-Qaddafi in the "Jasmine Revolution" have jumped upon yet another form of 21st century social media to coordinate protests: Online dating sites. Omar Shibliy Mahmoudi, a leader in the Ekhtalef, or "Difference," movement, innocuously named himself "Where is Miriam?" on a popular dating site in North Africa called Mawada.net while other revolutionaries set up female profiles with names like "Melody of Torture" so they could exchange messages (males cannot send each other direct messages on the platform).

The system was used both as a method for communication between opposition members who already knew each other, and to suss out like-minded individuals by using code words like "jasmine." After new connections were established, the "engaged" fighters start using instant messaging to coordinate demonstrations. The revolution continues.

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Comments [1]

mercy

johnsonmercy3@yahoo.com

My name is mercy, I saw your profile today and it really attracted me a lot i will be glad to be your friend, i have been looking for a nice one to share my love life with ; How is your health? i hope all is well with you. I believe that we can move from here ; but remember that distance;age and color dose not matter what matters is the true love and understanding; in my next e-mail i shall include my picture;i have some thing important to tell you mail me with my email address.(johnsonmercy3@yahoo.com )i been waiting for your for further introduction
extend my greetings to your families.
yours sincerely
mercy.

Dec. 26 2011 02:06 PM

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