Egypt: Bad Bad Facebook

Last week, the daily talk show, Misr El-Naharda (Egypt Today), that is aired on the Egyptian state-run TV channel, Al-Masreya, discussed Facebook and its effect on the Egyptian society.

Zeinobia writes in her blog about the episode, and how the discussions there were mainly tended towards attacking Facebook.

National TV’s Misr El-Naharda discussed the pros and cons of the Facebook, with more focus on the cons that made it like the evil that will destroy the Egyptian society.

The show became the mockery of the Egyptian blogosphere, as the TV hostess, Mona El Sharkawy, along with the two guests there, Nadia Radwan and Gamal Mukhtar made many misleading – and even funny – statements during the show. The show was recorded and uploaded on YouTube [Ar], and bloggers like Aam Mina published the funniest quotes made there on his blog.

مني الشرقاوي: الفيسبوك طبعا تبع شركة جوجل العالمية وهو حجرة من حجيرات شركة جوجل.
نادية رضوان: فيه بردو موقع “مي بليس” شبيه ليه.

مني الشرقاوي: احنا بقينا جواسيس لبلدنا.. بنفضح بلدنا.
مني الشرقاوي: الحمدلله ان استخدام الانترنت لسة محدود
Mona El Sharkawy: Facebook for sure belongs to Google. It's in fact one of Google's rooms.
Nadia Radwan: There is also “My Place”, which is a very similar website.

Mona El Sharkawy: We now became spies spying on our own country.
Mona El Sharkawy: Thanks God, the internet penetration rate in Egypt is still limited.

UltimateServ also wrote on Twitter how the hostess made an episode about Facebook, which she has never used before..

مش عيب ان منى الشرقاوي تعمل حلقة عن الفيس بوك وتقول انا مفكرتش اشترك فيه أصلاً هو دا الإعلام الرسمي بتاعنا؟ منهم لله
Isn't it a shame that Mona El Sharkawy made an episode about Facebook, then she said that she never thought of joining it? This is just how state-run TV acts. May God punish them for this.

After the show, many bloggers started to think that it might have been a move from the government to repel people away from Facebook, in order to block it later on, especially given the recent developments in the Egyptian traditional and social media scene. Even some others started to wonder if the government might create an alternative social networking platform that it can control. Zeinobia wrote more about it in her blog.

This segment raised many fears and speculations to the level that there has been a rumor today that Link Dot Net presented a study for a Facebook alternative to the government , the rumor took the internet by a storm to the level that Link Dot Net officially denied it in a very clever move.

Amira Al Tahawi wrote in her blog that an alternative sect-oriented Facebooks already exist in Egypt.

عندنا اكاونتات ع الفايس بوك القبطي والاخواني والمصري . خلي الحكومة بقى تعمل فيسبوكها
I have accounts now on Coptic Facebook, Ikhwan Facebook, and Egypt Facebook. Let the government now create its own Facebook.

Finally the Egyptian Ministry of Communications and Information Technology denied all the Facebook-blocking rumours [Ar]. However this didn't stop the ongoing mockery on Twitter for the possibility of having an Egyptian government-made Facebook alternative, and how it might look like [Ar/En].


Join the conversation

Authors, please log in »


  • All comments are reviewed by a moderator. Do not submit your comment more than once or it may be identified as spam.
  • Please treat others with respect. Comments containing hate speech, obscenity, and personal attacks will not be approved.