The Irony of Sisi’s War on Disinformation

By Dounia Mahlouly|March 29, 2023|Uncategorized|0 comments

In 2018, Egypt passed a new law criminalising the publication of online content deemed “fake news”. Since then, the issue of disinformation has been conveniently invoked to legitimise state control over the media and further securitise the online space. Human rights advocates reported that Sisi’s war on disinformation is used to reassert the agenda of national security. This became particularly obvious in the context of the COVID-19 epidemic, during which

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Egypt Claims to Counter Disinformation, but Whose Disinformation is Sisi Fighting?

By Dounia Mahlouly|March 29, 2023|Arab uprisings, Digital cultures, Social media, The Middle East, Uncategorized|0 comments

Misinformation – whether deliberately harmful or unintentionally misleading – is nothing new. Political actors have always competed for attention and legitimacy by strategically framing their narrative, occasionally distorting the facts or counteracting alternative versions of the truth. The term ‘disinformation’ however became somewhat of a buzzword in recent years (Bennett and Livingston, 2018). In today’s media environment, the debate surrounding this issue specifically pertains to unverified or misappropriated claims as

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Marvel’s Captain America and Sabra’s origins in propaganda

By Dina Matar|September 20, 2022|Uncategorized|0 comments

SOAS MA Media and the Middle East graduate Nadine Sayegh comments on the latest Marvel comic For Marvel comic fans, the introduction of the new character ‘Sabra’, announced last weekend at the D23 Expo held in Anaheim, California, generated considerable discussion, particularly because the comic introduces Israeli actress Shira Haas cast as ‘Sabra’ in the upcoming Captain America franchise, New World Order. Discussions ranged from the title of the film

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The Spotify Dilemma: what is the problem?

By Dina Matar|February 15, 2022|Uncategorized|0 comments

Dina Matar[1] The ongoing public controversy around the use of Spotify by podcast host Joe Rogan to spread misinformation and false claims about Covid vaccines has sparked fresh concerns about the role of Big Tech in spreading misinformation and fake news, the assumed power these networks have in changing or influencing social and political attitudes and the need to regulate their content. The controversy escalated last week as several high-profile

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By Dina Matar|July 13, 2021|Uncategorized|0 comments

Race and the media; is more regulation the answer? Dina Matar, Centre for Global Media and Communication[1] The highly publicized incidents of virulent British racial abuse against young black football players following the defeat of the English team in the Euro 2020 championship at the weekend, and reactions to these abuses, are not new. Indeed, in February this year, online racist abuse also aimed at Black football players provoked a

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Is Clubhouse the latest new media technology for change in the Middle East?

By Dina Matar|April 15, 2021|Digital cultures, Uncategorized|0 comments

Dina Matar, Chair, Centre for Global Media and Communication The story of the popularity of the audio chatroom app. Clubhouse, in the Middle East seems to follow a well-trodden route – the platform is launched in the region and elsewhere; the app is quickly taken up by users eager to talk about anything- from what to wear in Zoom calls to discussions of taboo topics, such as honour killings in

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MA |Media student discusses Palestinian LGBTQ Al-Qaws decolonisation practices throughout the pandemic

By Dina Matar|March 19, 2021|Uncategorized|0 comments

By Deirbhile Ní Bhranáin, MA Media in Development Centre for Global Media and Communication Seven years ago, almost to the day, Palestinian grassroots activist Haneen Maikey spoke in London about the organisation of which she was the director, Al-Qaws for Sexual and Gender Diversity. Al-Qaws, which in Arabic means ‘rainbow,’ was established independently in 2007 and works to provide services and support for LGBTQ+ Palestinians. As stated on their website,

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How “post-truth” has failed us, book review

By Saeed Zeydabadi-Nejad|February 7, 2021|Uncategorized|0 comments

How “post-truth” has failed us Book Review: Post Truth: The New War on Truth and How to Fight Back (Matthew D’Ancona 2017) “Post-truth” has become the zeitgeist-y catchphrase since Donald Trump’s election coincided with the UK’s vote to leave the EU. Matthew D’Ancona argues that 2016 launched the ‘post-truth era’: emotion is now valued over reason and facts are no longer central to politics. Despite only referencing the US and

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Why do we need to think about capital and communication in an age of crisis?

By Dina Matar|October 27, 2020|Uncategorized|0 comments

Dina Matar At no other time in contemporary history has a critical understanding of communication and the structures and regulation of complex media systems been more important and more urgent than during this current historical moment of multiple crises, marked by dysfunctional political communication practices (just witness the US election debates), the dominance of mainly US tech giants in mediation processes, digital surveillance, hateful speech and disinformation. It is a

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