The academic journalism conference Arab-U.S. Association for Communication Educators
(AUSACE) was held at the American University in Cairo (AUC), on Sunday, Oct. 23rd. Politics in the Age of Internet and Social Media. Academics in the mass communication field gathered to discuss the implications of social media on politics, hate speech and sensationalization of the media.
Salma El Ghetany is a JRMC (journalism and mass communication) graduate from AUC who deliberated how the popular Egyptian song “Bushret Kheir” promoted nationalism and brought the whole country together in a critical time where it was splitting apart. The song was released during the 2014 presidential elections which was the first elections after the 2011 revolution, hence calling it “Bushret Kheir” which translates to “A Good Sign.” The song was inclusive of Egyptians from every social class in the music video. The Egyptian flag was shown multiple times in the music video, which is an obvious symbol of nationalism. Through this short presentation, El Ghetany’s research concluded that “ "Bushret Kheir" revolutionized Egypt.”
Dr. Abeer Al Najjar, a journalism professor at the American University of Sharjah discussed her preliminary observations from her workshop with more than 20 female journalists talking about hate speech and how to deal with it from a social psychology standpoint. Al Najjar first started talking about the threats women in the Arab society get from harassment to rape to sexist, demeaning comments.“Fundamentally we have to look at hate speech and from a regulatory point of view and also from a social and professional point of view as a way to counter it and preserve competing rights.” said Al Najjar.