November Saudi Fun Quiz is Ready!

The November Fun Quiz has been added to our quiz page or you can access it directly from here.


And just a little hint…you might want to go back and review November postings before taking the quiz!

Impact of Blogs and Bloggers in Saudi Arabia

SAUDI-INTERNET-GULF-BLOGGERSI am frequently asked by individuals when they learn that I maintain a daily blog what impact are blogs and bloggers having in Saudi Arabia. That’s a good question and one which deserves some analysis and discussion.


Saudi Arabia is one of the most closed and conservative societies. It is also a country with culture and traditions which are continually filled with contrasts and contradictions. There is not a “one-size-fits-all” description that can be applied to Saudi Arabia. And naturally ones impressions, views and experiences of Saudi Arabia will vary greatly by not only what nationality an individual is but where they are in Saudi Arabia and why they are in Saudi Arabia. The Western nurse who is living in shared housing on a hospital compound will have a vastly different experience than the western wife who accompanied her husband and living on a western-only compound resembling a resort retreat. The same is applied from the expat from another third world country who has come to the Kingdom to work as compared to people the world over who have only come to Saudi Arabia to perform Hajj or umrah. And of course the views and perspectives of Saudi nationals who are bloggers will be quite different from those who are guests in Saudi Arabia. In addition, the global media has a tendency to give only a narrow glimpse of Saudi Arabia and usually on such issues as oil, terrorism or women driving.


As a result, blogs and bloggers have a continually emerging role in Saudi Arabia by keeping readers who do have an interest in the day-to-day realities of life in the Kingdom informed. Blogs help in opening up people’s eyes and further personalizing the Kingdom, its cultures, traditions, customs and beliefs. And as I stated in the paragraph above, depending on ones circumstances not all views will necessarily be the same. There are always two sides to every story and not everyone has either had the same experience or shares the same views. Yet in my view, blogs are an excellent mechanism to further balance out and learn about Saudi Arabia.


The media is not always biased. Do not be naïve and expect a blog or blogger to be biased either. I’m speaking from experience on this one. I’ve tried to be overall biased or as Fox News would say “fair and balanced” but I’ll be the first to admit there have been occasions when I have failed. Yet this is one of the joys of blogging where a blogger can express himself or herself freely…. Well, almost freely to be politically correct if blogging from and about Saudi Arabia.


One should never assume that there is freedom of speech here in Saudi Arabia whether in the spoken, written or digital prose. While there is less scrutiny in English language blogs than the Arabic language blogs I never assume that my blog could not be shut down if I were to say something viewed as “too offensive” or crossing a red line.


My blog stats indicate that there is an interest and demand for information about Saudi Arabia. This is also further reinforced by the daily search statistics my blog provides too. So what I would ask of readers is to tell me what kind of impact do you believe my blog provides about Saudi Arabia? Where are the areas in which you believe I have not covered enough and merit more exposure? What issues do you find either most interesting and most pertinent?


And in closing, I also wish to express my thanks and appreciation to you for visiting, reading and commenting on my blog.


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