Egyptian Names Baby 'Facebook' For Site's Role in Revolution

Egyptian man names first born child after web site.

ByABC News
February 21, 2011, 11:33 AM

Feb. 21, 2011 — -- Looking for a name for their newborn daughter that celebrated the recent events in Egypt, an Alexandria couple skipped calling her "Tahrir Square" for something a little more trendy -- Facebook.

Baby Facebook's father, Jamal Ibrahim, told Egypt's Al-Ahram newspaper that he "wanted to express his gratitude about the victories the youth of January 25 have achieved and chose to express it in the form of naming his firstborn girl," according to a translation by the blog TechCrunch.

Social media played an integral part in coordinating three weeks of protests that ended in the ouster of President Hosni Mubarak, after three decades in power.

The Egyptian government quickly realized the power of the Internet in fomenting revolution and shutdown access across the country. Soon after the protests began on Jan. 25, Wael Ghonim, a Google executive and founder of the country's preeminent dissident Facebook page, was arrested.

That page "We Are Khaled Said" was created last year in the wake of the murder of student activist Khaled Said at the hands of Egyptian police.

The page became a digital Tahrir Square, a central meeting places where protesters could plan and disseminate information about where to meet in the streets of Cairo, Alexandria and other Egyptian cities.

Facebook along with Twitter, Google and YouTube were all used by protesters to organize and broadcast news and images from the ground.

Facebook, however, because of its early connection to the "We Are Khaled Said" movement became the primary online meeting place for Egyptians once the Internet ban was lifted.

Earlier this month Facebook reported having 5 million users in Egypt with 32,000 groups and 14,000 pages created in the two weeks after Jan. 25, according to the Wall Street Journal.