Monday, October 10, 2005
I have recently joined Jordan planet bloggers, this is my 12th discussion list, message board, forum, group, mailing list, or call it whatever name you want to give it. Prior to Joining Jordan planet, I was an active participant on Mahjoob, I spent a little over two years on that site, and what an experience it was. I'm not going to state any high lights from my presence in there since there weren't any of it worthy of any mentioning. Before Mahjoob I was a resident on a site called Jordan net.net for about 3 years. There were many mature participants in there, some of them were highly intelligent. we even had a Jordan net get together and we got to meet one another face to face. But then late in 2003, the site started having less and less visitors, and when the activities went down to almost zero, I migrated to Mahjoob. I recall my very first experience joining those internet discussion forums was in 1998, it was a list called Arab writers list. We were divided into different kinds of writers, some of us were writing columns, others were writing short stories, some were writing drama, fiction, tragedy, poetry and so on and so forth. I was primarily writing about politics since political science was my specialty and it was what I studied at the University. Most of my political writing centered around the Arab Israeli conflict, the American foreign policy, the UN, and the American domestic political policies,namely, the President, congress, and the Judicial processes. Like usual, people wouldn't leave one another alone and before you know it fights, arguments, and cursing started to be exchanged between members and not long after that the owner decided to close down the forum. At some point in time I tried to experiment with having my own discussion list, and sure enough I started what I named "Best of electronic media" I was able to enlist about 15 active members, and our group registered approximately 2200 quality messages, but I guess it was never meant to be, the members were getting lax by the day, and the posts were getting less and less, until at some point in time I was the only member posting. In other words I ended up being the owner, the moderator, and the poster. When that short lived experiment met its demise, I joined a group called Palestine media watch, the group was initially very active, the primary responsibility of the members were to check the major US newspapers like the New York Times, The Washington post, and The Wall street Journal, and we read all of the articles that talks about the Arabs, and when we find a factual error we write letters to the editor and we ask for a face to face meetings with the editorial board of that particular newspaper. We did real well, we managed to get the newspapers to call the west bank an occupied Palestinian territories, we managed to get them to call the Golan Heights an occupied Syrian territories, and we managed to have them refer to Jerusalem as a disputed territories instead of calling it an eternal capital of Israel. The main fights and arguments were about semantics, but then like everything else you get tired of it, in addition to being time consuming and too many bigoted editors and columnists. Their dogma blinds their writing. I still do some of that work on a volunteer case by case basis but I'm not as active as I used to be four or five years ago. The list of joining and quitting these discussion forums extended beyond what I have already manifested, at some point in time I was active in writing letters for an organization called the Arab American Anti Discrimination Committee, I was also active in a group called the National Arab American Journalist Association, and that is why Pal Force probably thought that I was a Journalist. In addition to the foregoing I also served in Al-Awda, Free Palestine, Arab community news, Ido net work news, and media monitor net work. If you ask me what is the purpose of being into all of these groups, my answer would be I have no idea. I guess for one thing I love writing, and I think that my experience finally helped me find my niche. I'm a blogger, there is no if, and, or but about it. It may have taken me since 1998 to try to figure it out, I think that it is now over and done with. I think that blogging for me is like what someone said it the other day : it is catharsis, there is no other way letting out the best of me the way I get done through blogging.