January, 2009

Stories from January, 2009

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Egyptian Quranist Blogger Released

  30 January 2009

Egyptian blogger Reda Abdel-Rahman (32) is freed on January 23, 2009, after being detained since last October. Reda is a social worker at a Religious Institute affiliated to Al-Azhar. The young blogger is known as a “Quranist” who rejects the Sunnah (which means “the way and the manners of the prophet Muhammad” - wikipedia) and considers the Quran as the only source of Shariaa (the body of Islamic religious law).

Morocco blocks four opposition websites

22 January 2009

Four websites of the Jama’a Al Adl wa Al Ihsan (Justice and Spirituality), Morocco’s largest Islamic movement (officially illegal), have been blocked in Morocco this week and redirected to the following blockpage:

Bahrain: Scores of Websites Blocked

  21 January 2009

Scores of websites have been blocked in Bahrain, following a new crackdown by the Ministry of Information. The latest sweep makes sites ranging from Google Translate to those of social, religious, human rights and political groups inaccessible to people in Bahrain.

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Harry Nicolaides, Thailand's latest political prisoner

  21 January 2009

The Harry Nicolaides case raises vital issues, procedurally, legally and in Thai society. Was Harry arrested because he wrote in English and therefore his self-published expat bargirl novel of 50 paid-for vanity copies of which seven (we repeat, seven) copies were actually sold, represented a clear and present danger to the Thai monarchy from the world community?

Debate over indecency filtering in Hong Kong

  20 January 2009

Hong Kong government is completing its first round of consultation on the Control of Obscene and Indecent Article Ordinance (COIAO) at the end of January, 2009. The most debatable section is on the control over online new media as the existing practice of indecent and obscene censorship is very arbitrary...

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Syria blocks personal blog of Human rights activist

  19 January 2009

Syrian authorities have blocked access to the personal blog of the 26-year-old Syrian Human rights activist and blogger Mohammad Al-Abdallah who is blogging at Raye7wmishRaj3 (I’m Leaving and I’m Not Coming Back). Syrian Netizens can access the blocked blog via HTTPS or simply by visiting the mirror blog at http://rwmr.wordpress.com/.

Arrest of Christian Convert blogger in Saudi Arabia

  15 January 2009

According to the Arabic Network for Human Rights Information (ANHR), Saudi authorities have arrested the 28-year-old blogger Hamoud Bin Saleh and blocked his blog Masihi Saudi (A Saudi Christian). The ANHR adds further that blogger Hamoud Bin Saleh was arrested “due to his opinions and announcement at his blog that...

China's Anti-Smut Campaign and Political Censorship

  15 January 2009

There is a patriotic saying in Chinese: you can kill one, thousands of us will be reborn (to fight against you). The new round of internet crack down has begun in China at the beginning of 2009 and bullog.cn, one of the most influential blog hosting platform in China for more than a hundred outspoken bloggers and citizen reporters, was forced to shut down on 9 of Jan. Now, they are rebuilding their blogs in various platforms, scattered but aggregated through various Feed readers and new websites.

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Lessons on libel: South African blogger sued for defamation

  14 January 2009

After South African Donn Edwards wrote in his blog about the dubious marketing tactics of a holiday rental company called Quality Vacation Club, he was sued for defamation. This was interpreted as an attack on all bloggers in South Africa so a campaign to support him was launched, a Facebook group and dozens of bloggers wrote about it. Here are a few lessons on libel for bloggers.

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