<CPOV> BBC Arabic report about the Middle East conflict and Wikipedia

Dror Kamir dqamir at bezeqint.net
Wed Dec 1 22:03:29 CET 2010

A follow up on this -

I added English subtitles - 

After listening carefully to the whole report in order to translate it, 
I should say that the picture arising from this report is rather 
distorted. It might be interesting to speculate why it is so. While the 
content of the report is not going to bring any of you new information, 
we might want to figure out why the overall impression that derives from 
this report is somewhat peculiar. First of all, such a report in 
English, German, French, Swedish, Hebrew or Persian would be discarded 
as "old news". It gives very basic description of the Web 2.0 
phenomenon, but apparently such a description is still relevant to many 
Arabic-speaking viewers.

The reporter is also rather concerned about who wins the "war", while 
bypassing  the issue of how information should be conveyed. The dialog 
with the Huffington Post reporter also concentrate on the issue of how 
we Arabs should win this "war", rather than asking how Arabs can benefit 
from the fact that they can access information from various sources in 
various languages, and whether the public opinion within the Arab world 
can or should change owing to that.

The Palestinian blogger also talks about the problem of poor English, 
rather than asking how the information available in Arabic can be 
improved. I think the inferiority the Palestinian blogger talks about is 
not technological or linguistic. I think it is a feeling of inferiority 
that drives many Arabs into concentrating on their image and on pushing 
their narrative in the global scene, rather than to harness the new 
technology for the benefit of their own society.

This "complex" is also found in the Israeli society but to a lesser 
extent, at least to my objectivenessly-challenged judgment.


בתאריך 30/11/10 15:15, ציטוט Jodi Schneider:

> Thanks Dror -- never apologize for sharing something even though we can't read it! Hopefully someone will subtitle this!
> If you hear of anybody writing a transcript (even in Arabic), let me know -- automatic translation has been pretty reasonable recently.
> :) -Jodi
> On 29 Nov 2010, at 12:41, Dror Kamir wrote:
>> Hello,
>> This report is entirely in Arabic, so I suppose most of you won't benefit from it, and yet, you never know when a source of information in a language you don't understand might come in handy. Besides, yours truly pops up in this report twice talking Arabic in a bad accent.
>> The trigger for this report by BBC Arabic is the workshops organized by some Israeli right-wing organizations on how to introduce "Zionist edits" into Wikipedia. For the time being, I haven't seen any significant influence of these groups. Anyway, I was asked to give my five cents about the reflection of the Middle East conflict on Wikipedia. A few extra dimes were given by a Palestinian editor. Then there is a long interview with an Arabic-speaking Huffington Post reporter about how the new media changes the nature of the Middle Eastern conflict.
>> http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=86vokoQBom0
>> Dror K
>> _______________________________________________
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>> cpov at listcultures.org
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