I would like to do a research about social media and its efficiency in manipulating social opinion and behavior, i.e., propaganda. I would like to focus on the example of the Arabic spring and devote my research to the objective analysis of the role of the social media in igniting and instrumenting the Arabic Spring. One of the significant aspects of confrontation at the time was about the control of the social media as a source of propaganda. The Middle East governments have historically abused social media to control the information flow and shape public opinion. The opposing political movements tried to win over control of the social media in order to impose the new ideology and engage new members and allies. I will look into the ways these adverse patters appeared in the social media and the political purposes of such propaganda.
I will ground my research upon quality secondary sources, i.e., books and peer-reviewed articles. I will use the library services of the Murray State University and such search engines as ProQuest, JSTOR, Communication & Mass Media Complete, etc. These sources offer comprehensive collections of scholarly resources on sociology, politics, and social media. The search terms will include the following: "analysis of the Arabic spring," "social media in the Middle East," "Western propaganda and the Arabic Spring," etc. I will use such journals as the Journal of Political Sciences & Public Affairs, the Journal of Mass Communication & Journalism, etc. I intend to study such authors as Tariq Ramadan, a world famous philosopher and the author of the Islam and the Arab Awakening (2012), and David W. Lesch and Mark L. Haas, the authors of The Arab Spring: Change and Resistance in the Middle East (2012). I will apply comparative qualitative analysis as research methodology. I will register with other online libraries if it is necessary to acquire materials from off-campus.