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Yemen Portal Presentation

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Walid Al-Saqaf talk about Yemen Porta

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Yemen Portal Presentation

  1. 1. Yemen Portal : A gateway to online content on Yemen Walid AL-SAQAF Arab Techies Workshop Cairo – 24 Dec 2008
  2. 2. YemenPortal.net <ul><li>Aggregating news, opinion, blog, forum, and video content covering Yemen. Currently standing at over 800,000 items retrieved since June 2007. </li></ul>
  3. 3. How Yemen Portal works
  4. 4. Since its launch, YemenPortal.net experienced steady growth, greater popularity and exposure <ul><li>Feedback was generally positive as the portal did not filter content based on content or affiliation of sources. </li></ul><ul><li>- whether a website was banned in Yemen or not was not taken into consideration when included on YemenPortal.net. All websites with their various affiliations were indexed and included. </li></ul>
  5. 5. Analysis of the database content of YemenPortal.net
  6. 6. Things were going well, until... YemenPortal.net was blocked in Yemen On January 19 th , 2008   A spike! 
  7. 7. What happened on January 13, 2008?
  8. 8. What happened on January 13, 2008?
  9. 9. Most coverage on the demonstration was on the web & very little was reported in mainstream media
  10. 10. Following the ban, there were only three choices: 1) Surrender to government pressure and close down the website, 2) Filter out sources the government does not improve, OR 3) Resistance! 
  11. 11. Resistance starts... <ul><li>Solidarity meetings </li></ul><ul><li>Renewing domain promptly </li></ul><ul><li>Constantly updating members and online media with new domain </li></ul><ul><li>Putting up advertisements on websites pointing to new domain </li></ul><ul><li>Starting a public campaign locally, regionally and internationally </li></ul>And started a blog to campaign for freeing YemenPortal.net (freeyemenportal.org)
  12. 12. Resistance goes full-scale <ul><li>A portal that includes the content of all banned Yemeni websites in one place </li></ul><ul><li>Includes a web-based proxy allowing users access to any Yemeni banned website </li></ul><ul><li>Members were kept updated about the new domain and means to reach the banned content </li></ul><ul><li>Stories that appeared on YemenPortal.net were accessible in their original website even if the later was banned (through the internal web-based proxy) </li></ul>
  13. 13. and it was named...
  14. 14. Government meets expectations... and the second domain was also banned... 
  15. 15. And it just went on...  There must be another way!
  16. 16. Access YemenPortal! (Firefox plug-in) <ul><li>Accessible by email, on multiple open websites </li></ul><ul><li>Applies multiple encryption methods </li></ul><ul><li>Promoted through a network of Yemeni websites </li></ul>
  17. 17. Result... 
  18. 18. but less than 24 hours after that...
  19. 19. Work in Progress… Road ahead <ul><li>Expanding YemenPortal.net’s outreach and services </li></ul><ul><li>Replicating its example for the Arab world by launching ArabiaPortal.net </li></ul><ul><li>Working on circumvention technologies with global players and other ‘techies’ </li></ul><ul><li>Promoting legal efforts to promote access to information in Yemen and the region </li></ul>
  20. 20. Contact information: Walid Al-Saqaf Founder, Administrator YemenPortal.net [email_address] Tel: +46 076233 9737

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