Internet traffic to and from Egypt by centralasian via flickr

Egypt was on everyone’s radar this week, but the story spanned beyond the country’s political unrest. Social networking sites like Twitter, Facebook, Flickr and YouTube were a huge part of the conversation in the news and around the blogosphere.

Facebookwas at the forefront of the anti-government movement, uniting more than 85,000 people in protests and demonstrations – a not-so-subtle reminder of the sheer numbers behind our social networks.

In addition to mobilizing Egyptians, social media were used by reporters, bloggers and ordinary citizens to keep the world updated on the situation in real time. In recent days, journalists became part of the story as pro-government rioters singled them out as targets.

The award for most resilient social media site goes to Twitter, whose network prevailed even when Egypt’s Internet was disconnected. Teaming up with Google, citizens moved to “tweet” via phone lines that converted their messages into text.

Of course, not everyone was impressed by the role Twitter or Facebook played in the revolution. The New Yorker’s Malcolm Gladwell ruffled many feathers by suggesting that the medium just wasn’t as important as the message.

For businesses outside Egypt, the crisis presents a good learning opportunity. CBC Business Network took a closer look at the Egyptian government’s actions to find lessons about customer complaints and corporate flexibility.

Top stories

News Corp Launches its iPad-exclusive Newspaper, The Daily, to mixed reactions.

Facebook Deals rewards consumers for “checking in” to its partners’ locations.

Pepsi Refresh takes a gamble – and hopefully not a fumble – choosing a social media campaign over an ad during the Superbowl.

Views from around the Web

Google’s Honeycomb heats up the tablet market, officially taking aim at the iPad.

Facebook capitalizes on trust, turning our friends’ “likes” into “sponsored stories.”

Following the likes of Mozilla and Microsoft, Google Chrome lets users opt out of ads.

Is Heidi Klum the new Lady Gaga? The supermodel is the newest content creator for AOL.

Google accuses Bing of cheating.

This week in social media

Mercedes launches Tweet Race in time for the Superbowl:

The Old Spice guy is back in the new Super Fan video:

Honda promotes its Jazz model with the interactive app, “This Unpredictable Life:”