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Arabisc: Sorting Through Arabic Blogs

With thousands of posts on blogs written in Arabic daily, do you realise how difficult it is to pick a handful for translation for Global Voices Online twice a week?

Moroccan
blogger Mohammed Saeed Hjiouij seems to be suffering from the same problem. He is at a loss on which blogs are better than others in the Arabic blogosphere.

حين أنشأت مدونتي هذه قبل سنتين تقريبًا، كان عدد المدونات العربية ما يزال محدودًا. كانت الجودة واضحة تماما وكان بالإمكان العثور على المدونات المميزة وتصفحها جميعها في وقت وجيز. الآن قفز عدد المدونات العربية إلى رقم كبير جدًا، وصار من الصعب تتبع كل المدونات العربية، فضلا عن صعوبة فرز المدونات المميزة عن المدونات التي هي أقرب إلى فقاعات صابون يلهو بها بعض الأطفال
“When I started blogging about two years ago, the number of Arabic language blogs was limited. Quality blogs were evident and it was easy to find outstanding blogs and scan them in a short period of time. At present, the number of Arabic language blogs has taken a quantum leap. It has become impossible to follow them all. Besides, it is extremely difficult to separate the outstanding blogs from those which are closer to soap bubbles made by children having fun,” he writes.

However, unlike me, Hjiouij has an ingenious idea to beat the blogging blues.

من أجل العثور على المدونات العربية المميزة وإضافتها إلى المفضلة الخاصة فكرت في هذه الفكرة/الاحتفالية. هي فكرة بسيطة ولن تأخذ من وقت المدونين الكثير، غير أن دورها سيكون واضحًا في إبراز المدونات التي تستحق المتابعة وتستحق البقاء في فضاء التدوين.
الفكرة ببساطة هي تخصيص الأسبوع الممتد من يوم الأحد 25 مارس إلى يوم السبت 31 مارس 2007، للحديث عن المدونات العربية. بحيث يمكن لكل مدون يرغب في المشاركة، اختيار سبع مدونات يراها مميزة، وفق معاييره الخاصة، ثم الكتابة عن تلك المدونات طيلة الأسبوع، مدونة واحدة كل يوم. يمكنه أن يتحدث عن قصة تعرفه على المدونة، الأشياء التي أضافتها المدونة إليه، سرد تدوينات مختارة من المدونة، حوار مع صاحب المدونة، تقييم لمحتوى المدونة… إلخ. لكل مدون الحق في الحديث عن المدونات السبع بالشكل الذي يراه مناسبًا.
“In order to find outstanding Arabic blogs to add to our favourites (bookmarks), I have come up with this idea. It is a simple idea which will not take much of the bloggers’ time but will have a vital role to play in ensuring that distinguished blogs get the attention they need to remain on the Arabic blogosphere. The idea simply is to dedicate the week beginning on March 25 to March 31 to talk about Arabic blogs. Each Arabic blogger can select seven different blogs using his own selection criteria and talk about one a day on his blog. He can discuss how he came upon the blog, what the posts in it add to him, shed light on some of the posts which left an impact on him, interview the blogger running it, assess the quality of posts in it, etc. Every blogger will have the right to write about the blogs he selects in the way he pleases,” explains the blogger.

Hjiouij also suggests that all the articles be tracked by technorati to ensure that a list is compiled of the best Arabic language blogs.

Well, I guess I will have to wait until March 31 to know what the result is.

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