Sunday, October 07, 2007

Egyptian Bloggers Supporting Press Workers on Strike

At the time it happened, no one imagined that the Montgomery Bus Boycott initiated by the black citizens of Montgomery, Alabama would be imporant. After all, what can any group do without political power, guns, economic resources or friends in high places? When a group of dedicated people unite for a cause, the effect is greater with a group than by individual members of the group acting separately.

With that in mind, look at this...

Egyptian blogs go on strike today, October 7th, together with daily and weekly newspapers protesting crackdown on blogs, bloggers and free press. Striking blogs placed this banner at their front pages.

Early on, Egyptian bloggers started a freedom of speech campaign, placing this postcard on line for e-purchase. Card reads: ‘Why should speech be taken to court?’. Several copies were mailed to President Mubarak from all over the world signed by prominent public characters and active citizens, like prominent Egyptian geologist Dr. Ruchdie Saied.

Seven editors and journalists of independent and partisan papers were recently sentenced to jail, others face charges for their writings, 50 blogs and websites (including mine) continue to stand trials and shut down threats by judge Abdel Fattah Murad, blogger Kareem Amer rests in jail for his blog writings.

Bloggers are making a difference and power structures based on mushroom management are beginning to crack. "Mushroom management" refers to an old-fashioned approach to employee control: Keep them in the dark, cover them with shit and pick 'em when they're ripe.
It doesn't work as well as it once did. is temporarily down for an upgrade and in solidarity with Egypt's press strike (over 15 independent newspapers have gone on a publishing strike to protest recent prison sentences for editors and journalists.)

In Solidarity with the Egyptian Press Strikers

المدونة محتجبة للاعتراض علي حبس الصحفيين

Egypt's Independent Newspapers Strike In Protest On Sunday

Voice of America story, last week...

Now with three more journalists sentenced to jail, the secretary-general of the Egyptian Press Syndicate, Yehia Kallash, says the editors will be meeting Wednesday to decide when the strike will take place.

He told VOA that the court cases are clearly aimed at stifling the country's boisterous independent press, and punishing journalists who criticize the government or the ruling party.
He says the goal of these verdicts is to frighten and silence the voices of reporters. But, he says, based on previous experience he believes they would rather make a sacrifice than be silenced.

He said even though President Mubarak has promised to eliminate the laws allowing journalists to be sent to prison for publishing offenses, it is clear from the recent string of prosecutions that the government is not really interested in changing that.


For press Freedom ("Zeinobia -- I am just Egyptian girl who lives in the present with the glories of the past and hopes in a better future for herself and for her country.")

No comments: