Picking up from Alexander’s post. Youtube will probably get banned soon in the UAE, no more jizzing in the pants, you've been warned.
Lt Gen. Dhahi Khalfan Tamim, Dubai Police Chief, was addressing the assembly of Juvenile Education and Care association, when he said that some of YouTube content sparks dissent. The media took that as a cue that the video-sharing website might get banned. I am not so sure that will be the case.
If the Juvenile Care association is still as I remember (from couple of articles few years ago), then their recommendations are not at all obligatory to the executive leaders of Dubai. Dignitaries, senior citizens and businessmen meet in a Majlis-like forum, and they discuss the status quo of juveniles and the problems they face in their education and social life. Couple of years ago they recommended (rightly, in my opinion) banning the silly songs-request-SMS-stupid-flirting- sleaze-promotion TV channels. What happened? The channels proliferated exponentially. (Sounds like Haifa Wahebe’s breasts and half-moon ass aren’t as arousing as youtube videos, but I digress.)
There comes the inevitable question, is youtube totally ‘safe’? Of course not, and I wholeheartedly support censorship on some of its content. Especially the kind of hate inciting content. You might choose to believe otherwise, but WE DO NOT have democracy and total freedom of expression in the Arab World. We have a vicious Sunni-Shia sectarian strife. We have an intimidating rate of illiteracy. We have an intimidating rate of credulity. The stable and relatively prosperous Arab societies are stable because there are measures that ENSURE everything stays stable. Even when stability sometimes borders on stagnation….. in short, I am not worried about moral disintegration of societies, I am worried about strives and rifts. So for the time being, some of the content, in my opinion, may have to be censored.
Having said that, and with all due respect to Lieutenant General Dhahi, he is a law enforcement officer, he sees the darker side of town every day; murders, riots, drug smuggling...the whole nine yards. He might have come across crimes that were, for the sake of argument, inspired by youtube. But that’s not the grand picture is it? the society, any society as a whole, needs interactive media websites because the benefits outweighs the damages by many folds. Youtube isn’t only about dissent and defamation, it’s also about education, interaction, dialogue and understanding. So a total ban on the website is not the answer.
What y’all guys think?