13 September, 2007

The first legal action against a website owner in the UAE

Just because we blog, we should not think ourselves to be safer than other website users. Link here.

The court modified the charges pressed against the two Emiratis, the supervisor of the website and the writer, to public defaming crime from publishing news about people over the internet.

A few weeks later, another official complained against the same website.


Misdemeanour Court sentenced the supervisor to a year in prison. The website will pay Dh50,000 in fine and Dh20,000 in compensation to the official. The website was closed down.

This is extremely worrying to me as an Emirati, that our freedoms in this country, such as a freedom of speech, and tolerance for a different opinion is being eroded. And that it is being replaced by agressive and intolerant values such as these.

I advise those who have mentioned any officials in their blog to conduct an immediate edit of their posts and save whatever posts they intend to delete.

9 comments:

localexpat said...

we shouldn't be surprised at all...

There is a reason why most of us blog anonymously. And that is because we all know that freedom of speech is non-existent and are aware of the repercussions we would face if we are identified.

Otherwise we would all have our pictures and names splashed all over our blogs ;-)

moviemania said...

There never was any freedom of speech to begin with.

Anonymous said...

Middle East should be erased from this planet

Anonymous said...

Anonymous said...

Middle East should be erased from this planet
------------------------------
First, that's an ignorant thing to say.

Secondly, since when did the UAE ever have freedom of speech? Your leaders were never elected.

azucenamaryam said...

people who blog anonymously are just weak. You don't have to say everything that comes to your mind, and you have to be tactful and respectful. It's as simple as that. Now the ignorant comment that was made shows that only no name cowards would come out of and write something like that.

Dynamic Deeds said...

Emarati "defaming" any sort of entity or even a person is ILLEGAL.

We don't know the full story!
Perhaps they went over the top, and maybe they didn't.


I think this story should've been reported in more detials so that other people would know..
Mubrook 3laaik elshahar!

truly puzzled said...

"This is extremely worrying to me as an Emirati, that our freedoms in this country, such as a freedom of speech, and tolerance for a different opinion..."

Since when...?

Emirati said...

Since the changes in the government as of 2004, many of the "old ways" have changed.

People are no longer locked up for criticsm of the state, and are for the most part, 'free' to express their opinion.

The problem is that many of you are expats who are oblivious to anything outside of their gated communities or Emiratis who have no interaction with any government authorities at all to be able to know of these changes.

Avaya said...

Okay... wait.. you don't *have* to say everything that comes to your mind, but you *have* to be tactful and respectful....? why?

and people are no longer locked up for criticism of their state? yeah they are. you're free to express your own opinion as long as you don't say anything 'bad' about the guys on the top.

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