Fouad is back, Why are we never ready?

  • My good friend and fellow blogger Fouad al-Farhan has finally decided to restart his blog after more than two years of hiatus. During these two years, he experimented with Twitter, Facebook, and Tumblr, but he eventually admitted that there is nothing like blogging as a platform for personal publishing. Fouad is one of the most prominent people in the Saudi blogosphere, and I’m sure the whole blogging community is delighted to have him writing at length again. Welcome back, Fouad! You have been missed.
  • Abdulrahman al-Hazzaa, deputy minister of information and culture, keeps pushing for MOCI’s proposed law for regulating news websites in this column for Okaz daily. His latest argument: we are not ready for the freedom offered by such websites. We’ve heard this argument before. Government officials like al-Hazzaa keep telling us that we are not ready for civil society, not ready for elections, not ready of democracy, etc. We are pretty much not ready for anything, until they say we are, which, depending on their whims, can be next decade, next century, or sometimes never.
  • A little housekeeping note: the short linky posts are open to comments again. When I redesigned the blog earlier this year, I decided to close comments on these posts as an experiment. As part of the experiment, all posts are open to comments now. Let’s see how that goes.
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6 thoughts on “Fouad is back, Why are we never ready?

  1. Thanks for the news about Fouad Alfarhan, whose absence from the blogosphere (except for the occasional comment) coincided with my presence, so I am happy to be able to read his posts.

    I am glad the linky articles are now open to comment. If I may be so bold, as a regular reader of your blog, I wish you would be more assertive in deleting without response comments that attack you personally. They are tediously unimaginative, using standard adolescent male bullying tactics, and repetitious. They clog the comments section for the rest of us who value your blog of the quality of the posts and the comments. I don’t think there is any value in leaving them up, even in the name of free speech, which all bullies eventually and dishonestly invoke.

      • Ahmed–thanks for your reply. Your blog to do with as you wish, of course. Unfortunately, since they never comment substantively the ones leaving them just become a blur of same old same old bullying, and sometimes in gangs, since at core all bullies are cowards.

        This is different than the bullies (male and female) on other blogs who are regular commentators and hide their developmental delay in early adolescence somewhat better–for a while! :)

        Hmmm I’m feeling a gender analysis of bullying coming on so I will stop there.

        Anyway, I am glad the comments will be open again.

  2. I’m glad to hear that Fouad is back to blogging.

    I agree with you that certain Saudi government officials treat us Saudis as babies that have no capacity of choosing anything, or of having any critical powers. Forcing blogs to register with the Ministry of Culture and Information is just another step in keeping us in a police state!

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