Sounds Iranian

May 10, 2008

Statistics of Persian Blogs/Websites

Filed under: iran, research — soundsiranian @ 5:34 pm

Kamangir says that through analyzing links shared by Persian bloggers, I regularly search for the hottest points in the Persian blogosphere (a brief introduction to the methodology is given in here, for more information please send me an email or leave a comment). This report is based on 171 sources and over 30,000 shared links.Read more here.


November 28, 2007

Iranian Islamist Bloggers:Iran is not enough

Filed under: iran — soundsiranian @ 9:50 pm

First part of artilce: “Comparative Study of Iranian Islamist Bloggers” has been published on George Mason University’s Site.History News Network:Iranian Islamist blogs probably provide one of the best places to learn information and news about power and state-related issues in the Islamic Republic, because some of their writers have close ties with Iranian leaders and some of them even are leading figures in the regime.

By studying and reading the Islamist blogs, we get an insight into the dynamism and evolution of the Islamic Republic’s power structure, its ideology, its interests, and its conflicts.

Islamist blogs are not monolithic and, like many other non-Islamist blogs, provide us a window into Iranian civil society, daily life, and ideas.

July 16, 2007

Iranian Blogs as Social Indicators

Filed under: crosscultural, dialogue, iran — calexander @ 3:49 pm

Hey all. Farid recently asked me a few questions about the work I’ve done on Iranian blogs. I’ve reproduced the snippet below here because I think it says alot about the power and the danger of bridgeblogs. For good and for bad, we find what we want in these posts (see the first comment from the complete GVO interview for further evidence of what I mean).

Q: Do you think Iranian blogs can give you an image of Iran that we do not find in the mass media? Can you cite an example?

I definitely think that, especially in the case of Iran, blogging gives a welcomed alternative perspective that often diverges radically from what traditional mainstream media provides us here in the US. In my mind this is one of the most important contributions that the Iranian Weblogestan makes.

One of the most interesting and exciting discoveries I made during my study was the perspective of the Iranian blogosphere. The odd mix of familiarity and strangeness of their worlds provided a much more complex, nuanced, and sympathetic picture of Iranian society than traditional sources of news did.

The fact that I had such access to these people also gave me an important sense of empowerment. Learning about the intricacies of taxi culture in View From Iran’s “Taxi Talk,” or about daily street life from Mr. Behi gave me a glimpse into the heart of Iranian society that traditional media stories left out. Daily coverage of the Iranian-US nuclear stand-off and Iranian involvement in Iraq by the mainstream media continually creates a false impression of Iran that blogs often work to deconstruct.

But the Iranian blogosphere represents a very small demographic. As in other “developing” countries, the internal “digital divide” between those with access and those without significantly shapes the perspective and climate of the Iranian cyber-society.

Reading Iranian English-language blogs in the months and weeks leading up to the 2005 presidental elections, it would have been hard, if not impossible, to predict that Ahmadinejad would win. Clearly the views of these bloggers were at odds with a substantially large portion of the rest of Iran. The surprise/shock/denial illicited by many of these blogs in the aftermath illustrates how specific group this group was/is within the broader Iranian population.

June 27, 2007

On fakes, plots and handshakes: Mr. Khatami in Udine and “YouTube” video

Filed under: dialogue, east, iran, italy, Khatami Exit-2, udine, west, YouTube video circulating on the internet — soundsiranian @ 11:51 am

Udine, Italy

Dear friends of “Sounds Iranian”

I have one last word to say about my video “Khatami Exit-2”. The movie was recorded in Udine, Italy, last 12th of may, some minutes after 1.30 p.m. And, I must add, it is authentical.

“Khatami Exit-2” is a seven minute video which was published by my site, “la casbah di Udine”, in the context of an entire series regarding mr. Khatami’s visit in Udine. The movie shows your former president at the end of a long speech receiving claps, greetings, hugs, kisses. And handshakes.

My video came then to represent, in our point of view, a sign of succes. Don’t ask our opinion on the handshakes. If you insist, we will gladly say that we consider them part of a bigger news: the warm welcome our town gave to a man which, last 12th of may, symbolized a hope. The hope of a dialogue between two worlds which too many times seem colliding. Look at the several “thanks and goodbye” mr. Khatami receives during his seven minutes walk and you’ll probably come to the same conclusion.

There is another, not less important point I wish to underline. Everybody can see now that the situation is completely out of control. There are hundreds maybe thousands of copies of “Khatami Exit-2” fluctuating on the internet, “embedded” in web sites and blogs. And this is not the real problem. The problem comes from the “new” copies, made by people who “steal” the original images in order to create their own Khatami video. And use it for their own purposes.

These purposes clearly do not adhere to mine. But I know that, in the eyes of many, these difference do not exist. My website entered all the way in the struggle consuming Iran’s soul and became, unintentionally, a “tool”. Or maybe not so unintentionally, someone say. Ask Langley, they suggest. Ask the neocon. Ask Bush.

You can ask whomever you want, but if you ask me I will give you a short answer. I am choosing the same words used as caption in the last video of “la casbah di Udine”. A video dedicated to mr. Khatami’s visit and the ensuing scandal.

Mr. Khatami came to Udine shaking hands. Welcome to Udine Mr. Khatami.


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