Politico: Arabic social media remains an unchecked Wild West

Politico: Arabic social media remains an unchecked Wild West. “Suspected Kremlin agents peddle falsehoods masquerading as Instagram models. The terrorist organization Hezbollah posts propaganda updates as if it were a news organization. More than 2 million Iraqis join Facebook groups where guns are bought and sold without checks. Welcome to the world of Arabic-language social media — a Wild West where content moderation is minimal, foreign governments act with abandon, and jihadists foster online hate in arguably some of the world’s most war-torn countries.”

New York Times: Cooking Online, Arab Women Find Income and Community

New York Times: Cooking Online, Arab Women Find Income and Community. “The kitchen, historically the symbolic heart of domesticity in the Arab world, has often kept women tethered to household responsibility, and out of the work force. Only about 25 percent of women in the Middle East participate in the labor force — the lowest such figure in the world, even as female university graduates in the region often outnumber their male counterparts. But the rise of social media platforms, YouTube in particular, is changing the power dynamic for Arab women, allowing them to turn the kitchen into a source of income and influence.”

BBC: How TikTok is fuelling dreams of wealth in the Arab world

BBC: How TikTok is fuelling dreams of wealth in the Arab world. “Mohamed Ghadour spends four hours every day on his mobile creating new TikTok videos. He says the return is very rewarding, earning him a monthly income between $1,000 (£840) and $3,000 (£2,520). Although TikTok is not his only source of money, it is an essential one. He says a lot of people he knows are generating up to $10,000 from the video sharing app.”

Rest of World: Diaspora communities reframe history, one Instagram post at a time

Rest of World: Diaspora communities reframe history, one Instagram post at a time. “Marwan Kaabour has always been a collector. The London-based designer traces the hobby back to his childhood in Beirut, Lebanon. ‘Perhaps the most serious collection was an insanely well-organized collection of Spice Girls merchandise,’ he remembers with a laugh. Today, Kaabour is collecting photographs, video clips, and other rare visual media on the Instagram account Takweer, a digital archive with 16,000 followers that maps the intersections of queerness and Arab history.

University of Exeter: Experts to establish new archive of Kurdistan’s culture, history and politics

University of Exeter: Experts to establish new archive of Kurdistan’s culture, history and politics. “An international team of experts are establishing a major new archive of Kurdistan’s culture, history and politics. University of Exeter academics are working closely with colleagues from leading Kurdish archival repositories, the Kurdish Heritage Institute (کەلەپووری کورد ئەنستیتیوتی) and the Zheen Centre for Documentation and Research (بنکەی ژین) on the project.”

Pitchfork: The Syrian Cassette Archives Explore a Pivotal Era of Middle Eastern Music

Pitchfork: The Syrian Cassette Archives Explore a Pivotal Era of Middle Eastern Music. “In February, he launched the website for the Syrian Cassette Archives, a multimedia project that focuses on a vibrant cassette culture that flourished in Syria from the 1970s to the 2000s. Since founding the project in 2018, [Mark] Gergis and a small group of collaborators have spent countless hours digitizing his collection of around 400 tapes. He’s also amassed new acquisitions of tapes and conducted interviews with artists and tape sellers from Syria.”

Vanderbilt University: Heard Libraries acquire collection of jazz, world music master Yusef Lateef

Vanderbilt University: Heard Libraries acquire collection of jazz, world music master Yusef Lateef. “Vanderbilt’s Jean and Alexander Heard Libraries are now home to a rich collection of research materials from the life and career of Yusef A. Lateef, a Grammy-winning musician who played a pioneering role in bringing Middle Eastern and Asian sounds to American jazz. Lateef also was an author, visual artist, educator and philosopher. He died in 2013, but his cultural significance lives on through his artistry.”

Gulf Times: MoCI launches Qatar Business Map portal

Gulf Times: MoCI launches Qatar Business Map portal. “The business map portal provides a comprehensive database for users, allowing them to view the investment advantages of Qatar’s various regions through a search service for commercial establishments per region, and for the various available commercial activities. The portal also offers statistics on several commercial licenses registered in each municipality, new and signed-off commercial licences, and the latest commercial establishments registered in Qatar.”

Zawya: Ibtikar enables open access to digital library during UAE Month of Reading (PRESS RELEASE)

Zawya: Ibtikar enables open access to digital library during UAE Month of Reading (PRESS RELEASE). “Ibtikar, a UAE-based Educational Technology company, in cooperation with United Educational Publishing (UEP), a UAE-based Educational Press, has announced that 1,000+ Arabic stories on their reading platform, Al Diwan powered by Akadimi, is now available for access without log-in during the UAE Month of Reading this month.” I’m sorry this is so late in the month but the announcement is dated March 23. You don’t have to register to use the library, just click on a book and start reading.

MEMRI: MEMRI Launches New Website Dedicated To The Russia-Ukraine War

MEMRI: MEMRI Launches New Website Dedicated To The Russia-Ukraine War . “The Middle East Media Research Institute’s new Research On The Russia-Ukraine War page, and its Trending page, both highlight the most recent MEMRI research on the conflict: reports and clips from the MEMRI Russian Media Studies Project (RMSP), as well as content from the MEMRI Jihad and Terrorism Threat Monitor (JTTM), Domestic Terrorism Threat Monitor (DTTM), South Asia Studies Project (SASP), and Chinese Media Studies Project (CMSP) on global reactions to the crisis.”

Homeland Security Today: Program on Extremism Launches Nexus Project to Track Global Jihadist Movement

Homeland Security Today: Program on Extremism Launches Nexus Project to Track Global Jihadist Movement. “On March 7 at 09:30AM EST, the Program on Extremism launched a new project— The Global-Local Jihadist Nexus: Islamic State and Al-Qaida Affiliates Monitor (Nexus). This project draws on a global network of subject matter experts and locally-based researchers to monitor Islamic State and al-Qaida affiliates across the Middle East, Africa, and Asia, as well as their support and enabling networks in the West.”

The National Weekend: Vintage photo archive ‘The Old Bahrain’ shows island life in simpler times

The National Weekend: Vintage photo archive ‘The Old Bahrain’ shows island life in simpler times. “As we find ourselves flung headlong into another uncertain year, it’s not surprising that some of us may prefer to peer back through the cloudy gauze of nostalgia. Enter The Old Bahrain: a growing online photographic and video archive that not only enfolds an anxious populace into the past’s comforting arms, but also aims to highlight the huge changes in the country.”

Brookings Institution: How Middle Eastern conflicts are playing out on social media

Brookings Institution: How Middle Eastern conflicts are playing out on social media. “The Middle East has always been rife with enmity and rivalry, and its regimes have long taken advantage of the region’s many linguistic, religious, and cultural connections to shape the overall political environment. Regimes that do not control the information space risk being destroyed by it.”