The vendor is iUpload . Beta testing starts in December. Here is how they describe the project:
We are funding the development of an Arabic blogging (Web logging) tool and, with donor support, we will host the blogs at no cost to the bloggers. This will allow blogs to be created easily. It will give voice to those working for freedom and democracy in the Arab world. And it will enable them to more easily connect with and share ideas with their peers.
The site is soliciting donations. More about hosting and future plans:
Every blog developed using the Arabic blogging tool will include space that is under the control of organizations that we work with, such as Friends of Democracy . This space or “real estate” will be a portion of the blog header (top of the page) and the left column. The organizations will use the space to promote groups, individuals and news that, in the big picture, advance freedom, democracy and peace in the region. Thus, everyone that creates a blog will be promoting moderate and progressive information and viewpoints in the Arab world. Friends of Democracy will use the space to publicize pro-democracy groups, election information and related news. The blogs created under Friends of Democracy will be ambassadors of democracy in the Arab world.
Friends of Democracy
The first group of blogs will be under Friends of Democracy . It will focus on Iraq but anyone, and any group, anywhere that wants to be a “friend of democracy” will be able to create and maintain a Friends of Democracy blog in Arabic at no cost. Friends of Democracy will establish and enforce policies regarding blog use and blog content.
If enough funds are raised, we will seek other moderate organizations to oversee blogs in other Arab countries such as Saudi Arabia and Syria. We will also fund the development of the blogging tool in Farsi so it may be used in Iran and in Kurdish.
I wonder what criteria and measures will be used to "establish and enforce policies regarding blog use and blog content."
In December we'll be able to ask participants from Spirit of America how this will work.
(cross posted at RConversation.com )