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G20 activists use Twitter and Facebook to co-ordinate potests

Warwick Ashford

Microbloginng and social networking sites like Twitter and Facebook are proving to be a valuable way to co-ordinate group activities, including protests at the G20 meetings in London this week.

Protest groups are capitalising on the popularity of social networking sites to publicise as well as co-ordinate campaigns quickly and remotely.

Twitter has grown by more than 3,000% and Facebook by 123% in the past year, according to figures from internet monitoring site Hitwise.

Activists are able to call flash protests and demonstrations as well as update protesters using Twitter feeds that can be accessed from mobile phones.

In the past month, the Twitter feed for G20 Meltdown group has posted details of preparations and links to other groups and YouTube videos, according to the Financial Times.

The G20 Meltdown Facebook group has 3,240 members and it has more than 500 followers on Twitter, the Times said.

Analyst group Gartner predicts that by 2011, business microblogging will be a standard feature of 80% of social software platforms.

Twitter is already being used by business as a marketing tool as well build reputations, share experiences and gather information.

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