Twitter is big in Saudi Arabia. There, I said it. While no one can say for sure how many Saudi Twitter users exist, I think it is safe to say that the number is in the thousands. Regardless of the numbers, there have always been questions about the influence of social media on public discourse in the Middle East, with many dismissing these new tools as factors for stimulating change. However, I think that the past few months have showed some clear examples for what is possible using social media, as we have seen in stories like those of Samar Badwai and Abdulwahab al-Essa. With Twitter announcing their plan to launch an Arabic version next year, we can only expect that the influence of Twitter will grow and increase.
Now when you first register to Twitter, the website shows lists of suggested users to follow. Unfortunately, these lists are not exactly helpful if you are interested in following people in a certain country. That’s why I wanted to create this list. The list, which ranks users according to the number of their followers, is based on my own personal unscientific research, and it includes only real humans, compared to those Twitter accounts populated by bots/feeds. If I missed anyone, feel free to correct me in the comments.
Without further ado, here is my list for the top 10 Twitter users in Saudi Arabia:
- @Azizshalan: This was a surprise to me. I have never heard of Aziz Shalan before working on this list, and his bio offers very little on who he is or what he does. What we know is that he is based in Jeddah, he has more than 12,000 followers, and he tweets in both Arabic and English about many different things.
- @TurkiAldakhil: Turki al-Dakhil hosts a popular weekly talk show on Al Arabiya channel, owns Al-Misbar research center in Dubai, and writes a daily column for Al Watan newspaper. Since joining the service last year he has been pretty active, using Twitter to express his thoughts and opinions. He recently asked his followers to suggest names for his show and what questions to ask them.
- @RayeD_X: Another surprise on the list. I don’t know much about this user except for what he provides in his bio: he is apparently an engineering student at Umm Al-Qura University, and he ranks #2 on the world in Killzone, which is a first-person shooter video game.
- @essamz: A relatively distant fourth, Essam Al-Zamil is an entrepreneur and blogger from the Eastern Province. He focuses on economics, especially issues related to real estate and unemployment in Saudi Arabia.
- @alfarhan: Fouad al-Farhan is the most well-known Saudi blogger. Even when he was not blogging, he was regularly tweeting, and has been for the past four years. Fouad tweets about politics, society, and entrepreneurship.
- @Nejer: Cartoonist Malik Nejer uses Twitter to share his latest work and comment on social and political issues. In his bio, he describes himself as someone who is interested in natural sciences and human rights. Recently, Malik announced his engagement to another user, @contradict1987, and they occasionally have cute exchanges on Twitter ;-)
- @ahmed: Yours truly.
- @alzaid: Saleh Alzaid is not merely a Twitter user. As the founder of TwitEmail and the owner of TwtBase, this programmer has made his mark on the Twitter community not just in Saudi Arabia but around the world.
- @ibrahemsu: Ibrahem AlSuhaibani blogs in Arabic about marketing, branding, and corporate identity. This kind of content is severely lacking and much needed in the Arab speaking internet. On Twitter, Ibrahim shows a more lighthearted side, but also shares links to creative works with brief commentary.
- @Bandar: Bandar Raffah is a graphic designer who makes beautiful things. You can take a glimpse of his recent work by looking at successful iOS apps such as 2Do, QamarDeen, and iPray. His Twitter stream is a mixture of distinctive ranting with occasional links.
- Bonus! @azizkhoja: With 123 tweets only, the Saudi minister of information and culture Abdulaziz Khoja is not the most prolific Twitter user. However, his presence as a senior government official on this social network is definitely interesting. The minister links to his recent articles and sometimes replies to fellow tweeps questions.
18 thoughts on “Top Ten Twitter users in Saudi Arabia”
Ahmed you’re one of the best blogers in Saudi Arabia
I agree with u bro ! Ahmed is an amazing blogers .
Hey guys im RayeD_X , i just want to say thanks for adding me in this list .
I want everyone to read my interview on the biggest gaming websites http://bit.ly/aHoPq7
Also , take a look to my channel http://www.youtube.com/k1llzoneLEGEND
new videos are coming up soon ! i dont know exactly when but i can promise u it’ll be soon becoz im so busy with my college right now !
Im the best player and the fastest killer on the world 207 Kills/Hour
In a videogame called Killzone 2 and its the best game on the Playstation 3
Thank you for making this list.it’s suprising to me in mainly 2 ways ..first I never knew of number 1 & 2, and second their bios are not helping…it’s known that many people look at the bio to decide to follow or not…but you know Saudi Arabian usually don’t fit into the usual concepts and rules :)
Besides, those 2 twitter celebrity manage with their tweets to capture people attention …
Twitter is great social media for us Saudi Arabian.. It doesn’t break our conservative laws and you can protest without physically protesting ..because ad you know massed protest here is against the law… Because usually they end up in tragedy like people fighting, killed or injured.
I personally like twitter because you can speak your mind and there is nothing a side to distract you.. And there is nothing in your time line except the tweets if people Im following
*** @ibrahemsu ,not @ibrahimsu
I think I follow 5 guys in or from Saudi on Twitter. Of course you are one, Qusay, Nidal, Murtadha and Saad al Dosari.
Thanks for the list!
It’s clear that @Azizshalan & @RayeD_X have bought fake twitter users to follow them. There are a number of online websites where you go and buy fake followers. I think that’s a shame!
I think your jealous and a liar , one of them is number 2 on the world in a video game and thats why he has that many followers.
Give us a top 10 Saudi female twitter users. :D
What about @khaled?
That’s a good idea, Sara. Maybe you want to give it a try? :-) Re @Khaled, he has 3,200 followers, which is below Khoja and some other people.
هلا أحمد ، اليوم قرأت إسمك في أحد الوثائق السرية لويكي ليكس ، فحبيت أخبرك :
You did not mention @mujtahidd ?
You missed the top Saudi on twitter ،،، Fahad Albutairi ،،،،،،،،، he has over 600,000 followers he’s #1 in Saudi
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