Students in Moldova are using Twitter as a tool to mobilize opposition against a communist victory in Moldovian elections. According to reports, close to 10,000 protesters gathered at Moldova’s parliament in Chisinau, Moldova’s capital and were able to eventually break through police lines to storm into the building. From looking at the tweets on the subject, it appears that the demonstration turned into a violent coup attempt.
In the last 48 hours, students from Moldova have been tweeting, trying to rally others into demonstrating against the communists. If you look under the search terms “pman” (stands for Piata Marii Adunari Nationale, a square in Chisinau) or “Chisinau,” you can see the tweets about the demonstration coming in a rapid pace. There are also videos on YouTube of the protest. There have been reports that there is limited cellphone reception in the square (thought to have been turned off by authorities). So protesters are using Twitter to give live updates via GPRS networks on their mobile devices.
Twitter has long-been been a popular platform for breaking news, but this adds a new twist to the powerful capabilities of the micro-blogging service. The protests no doubt would have happened anyway and it is not clear how may of the actual protesters in Moldova are on Twitter. But it seems to be helping both as a coordinating tool and as a way to disseminate information about the events that are unfolding to the rest of the world.
Here are a few sample tweets:
“Chisinau – live feed from Radio Vocea Basarabiei is intrerrupted. will retransmit later. where are the official authorities?”
“RT @Moscovici: Protesters report police attacks protesters. Severe fights between police and protesters now in Chisinau, Moldova. #pman”
“The #twitter revolution – Twitter as the organizing tool for protests in Chisinau http://is.gd/rhwJ”