- Global Voices - https://globalvoices.org -

Arab Bloggers Meet in Tunis

Categories: Middle East & North Africa, Tunisia, Citizen Media, Digital Activism, Freedom of Speech, Technology, Announcements

On Monday in Tunis, the 3rd Arab Bloggers Meeting [1] kicked off with a day-long public conference. The meeting is co-hosted by Global Voices [2], Nawaat [3] and Heinrich Böll Foundation [4] and is attended by around 100 bloggers from nearly all Arab countries. Naturally, the conference was well-blogged, not only on the official Arab Bloggers blog [5], but also by many participants.

Links to media and blog coverage are being collected here [6] (please post in the comments section to let us know what we may have missed).

An Al Jazeera story about the meeting proclaimed: “Arab bloggers say Arab Spring has gone global [7]“. English-language blog coverage included Jillian York's posts on Day 1, Part 1 [8] and a special panel featuring Tunisian bloggers [9] who are now involved with Tunisian politics in various ways. The biggest news came from a ground-breaking talk by the new president of the Tunisian Internet Agency, in which he revealed that Tunisia secretly tested censorship software for Western companies [10].


Mohamed ElGohary, co-editor of Lingua Arabic. Photo by Mohamed Alâa Guedich (used with permission)

The meeting continues in a smaller, invitation-only workshop setting for the next three days. Participants continue to tweet about the discussions in multiple languages using the #AB11 hashtag [12], and the conference blog will continue to post updates. So stay tuned.

The 2nd Arab Bloggers Meeting [13], held in Beirut in 2009, is believed by many bloggers to have played an important role in building personal ties and trust among bloggers throughout the region – ties which enabled them to coordinate more easily during the Arab Spring.