The Common Man: An Examination of Content Creation and Information Dissemination on Twitter during the 2012 New Delhi Gang-Rape Protest

  • Saifuddin Ahmed
  • Kokil Jaidka
Part of the Lecture Notes in Computer Science book series (LNCS, volume 8279)


Twitter has become a critical force in generating and disseminating information pertaining to news events, public and media action, especially in situations such as protests, where public activism and media coverage form a symbiotic relationship. This study identifies different types of users or the “key actors”, e.g., traditional media organizations, new media organizations, non-government organizations and individual users who posted on Twitter in the period before, during and after the mass protests pertaining to a gang-rape incident in the Indian capital city of New Delhi in December 2012. The study especially focuses on the role of ordinary citizens or The Common Man in creating and disseminating information. Our results show that individual users contributed to more than half of the information dissemination, and the common man played an active part in creating and facilitating this information flow. Our findings can be leveraged by digital libraries for customizing the library experience for individual users as well as virtual communities according to the new dynamic paradigms of information creation and consumption.


Social media online communities twitter news communities 


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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing Switzerland 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  • Saifuddin Ahmed
    • 1
  • Kokil Jaidka
    • 1
  1. 1.Wee Kim Wee School of Communication and InformationNanyang Technological UniversitySingapore

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