Social media frenzy after Media Production City explosion

Social media frenzy after Media Production City explosion
3 min read
15 April, 2015
Analysis: The explosion that took Egyptian television channels off the air was followed by an explosion of sarcasm on social media outlets.
Social media gives users more leeway to mock the government [Peter Macdiarmid/Getty]
Social media started buzzing in Egypt just a few minutes after the explosion at the electricity transmission towers in Cairo's Media Production City (MPC), which caused Egyptian television channels to go off air.

News websites covered the incident, and as usual there were conflicting reports about whether it was an act of vandalism or an accident, before a group called "Ajnad Misr" (Soldiers of Egypt) claimed responsibility.

Social media users, meanwhile, had their own blast. Opposition activists wasted no time in expressing their happiness that the TV channels had gone off air. They launched the Arabic hashtags thankyoubomber and MediaProductionCity to express their satisfaction that the pro-government media channels had been silenced, and the hashtags quickly became a top trend on social media in Egypt.

Surprisingly, pro-state news websites did not immediately accuse the Muslim Brotherhood (MB) of the bombing. The only website that hinted at the MB's involvement said "analysts say it is likely the MB is involved in the MPC bombing."


In the same context, director of the private CBC television network said they were waiting for the findings of the investigation "to avoid wrongfully accusing someone", which led to many sarcastic responses.

A security source has confirmed that the overload of hypocrisy and adulation led to the MPC power cut.
- Social media user.

There were also many sarcastic accounts of what happened right after the explosion. Stories circulated of Ahmed Moussa hiding in the ladies room while others fled the studios.

"Since King Menes unified Egypt thousands of years ago, Egyptians have never been so united over one matter. May God preserve this blessing," an Egyptian account tweeted.

As usual, the ever-so-insightful presenter Tawfik Okasha said in a video circulated on social media: "I told the MPC director about the explosion before it happened."

"You do not need to take a close look to see the people's joy over the MPC channels going off air. The people certainly understand how immoral the channels are, but they ignore them," TV presenter Moatza Mattar commented.

"Most Twitter and Facebook users are happy the so-called state and private TV channels went off air following the MPC explosion," journalist Nadia Abul Magd tweeted.

Another user sarcastically commented on the explosion: "A security source has confirmed that the overload of hypocrisy and adulation led to the MPC power cut."

Journalist Ahmed Samir also added a comment: "The Habisha channel (a low-budget Arab movie channel) is the only one broadcasting now. If was in their control room, I would issue a statement proclaiming myself King of Egypt and Sudan, and no one would dare disobey me."

"Outside the Box: Reham Said is currently interrogating the perpetrators of the attack, and the bomb squad is being interviewed by Fifi Abdu in her show Five Kisses," journalist Mohammad Abdul Rahman tweeted.

‏This is an edited translation from our Arabic edition.