The Revolutions And The Press

Issandr El Amrani lists lessons from Tunisia's and Egypt's revolutions:

Egypt's [former Prime Minister Ahmed Shafiq] was hurt by his proximity to Mubarak, but what undid him was his defensive appearance on a live television show where, for the first time in Egyptian history, he was forced to debate in public with opposition figures. His resignation the next day was announced on the military's Facebook page, which has become its primary outlet after it was criticized for handing public relations through very abrupt martial communiqués. In these countries were leaders were long used to sycophantic television interviews, they now face combative interviewers out to make a reputation for themselves. It will be a while before the spin doctors come in and teach the politicians to stay on-message in the meantime, they are walking the tightrope without a net.

A leader communicating by Facebook and unable to answer press questions coherently? Maybe Mr Shafiq could relocate to Alaska.