But let's talk about my favorite country, which has been supporting #EuroMaidan from the beginning. Indeed you can name it my deep personal affection towards the country I’ve lived for the past several years, but Poland has been backing up the ideas proclaimed by We, The People of EuroMaidan since those first flames of revolution appeared in Kiev and other cities on November 21. Understandable support, coming both on political and social levels, brings a certain sentiment towards mutual history between two countries.
Living in Warsaw, pleasant as it is, made me even more proud: every-day meetings near the Ukrainian embassy, while you could hear both polish and Ukrainian languages; in solidarity with Ukraine, Palace of Culture and Science was illuminated in yellow and blue, the colors of Ukrainian flag. I should also mention the fact that solidarity has been shown in various cities throughout Poland, from Wroclaw and Gdansk to Lublin and Kielce. I shall rather assume that our western neighbor is the biggest fan of Ukraine, eventually becoming a part of European Union.
Between all that beautiful support and affections, there is always a bitter part for Ukraine, with an undeniable truth. It has been over 20 years, since the dissolution of USSR and when Ukraine is still struggling with the same issues it had in 1991, wait, not exactly, the level of corruption has definitely changed for worse, Poland managed to elevate and show the economical and social progress. Nowadays, if you look up data on levels of economic growth, Poland is one in a few European countries showing great deal of stability and prosperity.
Not being a political analyst, it's still quite easy to deduce, that any kind of revolution demands stability and strength, which Ukraine has not obtained yet, in this particular case inner strength, because We, the People of Ukraine, chose peaceful way to make things right, and it will take time and I got to say simple as it is, facebook and twitter helped us to start, sustain and maintain the #EuroMaidan both on local and international levels, online and on the streets of cities all over Ukraine.
Social networks helped to kick things off, when unsatisfied with Yanukovych political games, people, showed up in a small group on the Square of Independence in Kiev, and next day when journalists spread the word about it via internet, hundreds and after several days thousands of people showed up to display their support.
We remember the Orange Revolution of 2004 and because of that the comparison between that event and what has been happening since November 21 is logical, considering the fact that #EuroMadain had started on the Orange Revolution 7th anniversary.
It is about as symbolic as it gets.
During the events of 2004, the fastest way to spread around the information was text messaging and the scheme was working perfectly. Several years have passed, and while, here we are again fighting for our freedom, the idea of communication hasn't changed; the only difference is that nowadays online social networking overtook the text messaging function.
Small note on the most popular social networks in Ukraine:
The one on the top, created by Russian programmer Pavel Durov, is known as vkontakte.ru (vk.ru), or as I call it Eastern-European facebook. Especially popular within countries, such as Russia, Belarus and Ukraine it contains at least 195 million users all over the world.
Facebook in Ukraine is generally well-known, but unfortunately not as used as it is within western societies. And while most of Ukrainians have heard before about the facebook, i can promise you only small percentage of people, mostly within younger generation that has friends abroad, have any idea what twitter is.
According to research done by Social Media and Political Participation (SMaPP) lab at NYU,.two online social platforms are considered to play major roles in case of spreading mostly reliable information online and within the community down on the streets of the Ukrainian cities. While facebook mainly worked to inform local communities, twitter was used to inform the international groups. This shows a spectacular awareness of Ukrainian social community on what is the best source for certain targeted group of readers.
Imagine my surprise or better say frustration, when facebook and twitter exploded with the news, while vkontakte remained generally silent. Pieces of information were appearing in vkontakte newsfeed while other networks were buzzing about #Euromaidan all over the globe.
More research should be done on this subject, whereas it shows how well we can work together, if well- informed.
You can decide for yourself, whereas is Ukraine worth fighting for, just remember that we are as much European and want the same social and economic stability as every country. Let’s just hope we have enough patience for it.