The magazine awards its annual title, not to a celebrity, but to the everyday people who changed the Arab world’s political landscape.
Kate Middleton? Gabby Giffords? Yes, these are some of the people included in TIME‘s list of the year’s most influential people, but when it came to naming its Person of the Year, the magazine’s editors had only one clear choice: “the protestor.” Yes, rather than bestowing the epic title on one singular person, it goes this year to a collection of individuals who changed the world forever.
Specifically referring to the Libyan protestors who ultimately ousted Muammar Gaddafi, TIME refers to the group as “the people who toppled governments and brought a sense of dignity to a people who didn’t have it before.”
Other names on this year’s list include Seal Team 6’s Admiral William McCraven, Congressman Paul Ryan, and Chinese artist Ai Weiwei.