27 July, 2008

Anti-Hate Code of Ethic Draft Approved

Yesterday several Bahraini bloggers and web admins gathered in Alwaqt Newspaper's premises for the Anti-Hate Code of Ethics meeting. I was delighted that the turn up was better than the last meeting. After some discussions we were finally able to agree on a final release candidate copy. We need to run it by some lawyer type dudes first to make sure we didn't miss anything. Oh, and a glossary of terms is to be attached.
I am honestly proud by this effort, it's about time we, as citizens of this country, do something to control the often overly emotional and unobjective hate speech in our virtual space.

Oh, and in case you caught it, yes the news paper mis-spelled my last name. It is Almuhandis, not Almuhannadi.

An updated blog post of the latest copy is on Mahmood's Den. Well, it isn't updated yet but I'm sure Mahmood will get to it in the next couple of days.

Finaly some good news! Forgot how this felt!

24 July, 2008

Anti-hate code meeting next Saturday

Heads up fellow bloggers and web admins, next Saturday, at five PM, a follow up anti-hate code meeting will be held at Alwaqt newspaper premises.
I have expressed earlier my disappointment at the low turnout in the previous meeting, but I am quite optimistic about this one. more people know about it now and even Radio Bahrain will be present.
I'm looking forward to a good turnout and a productive meeting.

18 July, 2008

New Look Redbelt?

As you can probably see, I'm trying to change how theRedbelt.com looks like. This is still work in progress so I apologize in advance if things do not look right or work as they're supposed to.
Any comments about the face lift is highly appreciated.

16 July, 2008

Anti-Hate Pact: Does anyone care?

Last Saturday, a meeting was held at the Alwaqt Newspaper premises to discuss the draft of an Anti-Sectarianism pact which was penned by blogger Mahmood.
The meeting was quite productive, we changed the focus from "anti-sectarianism speech" to "Anti hate, violence and discrimination speech". It has a wider focus to include more than the sectarian feuds encompassing all kinds of discrimination.
We also discussed how it would be implemented, how we will approach offenders and how to identify offenders as well. After the meeting, Mahmood started a mailing group and met with the Minister of Information in what seems to be quite a positive and receptive meeting.
But does anyone care?
The attendees represented 2 blogs and 2 forums only. despite several days of printing a quarter page coloured advert in Alwaqt, not many were there to help form something that touches all.
To make matters more strange, it seems that Alwaqt themselves didn't pay much attention to the matter. With one reporter that left the meeting before it starts, they printed nothing about the matter until today, full three days after. Which is rather strange because I thought since they are sponsoring this movment, they would show more interest in it.
I hope that my fears are unfounded and the rest of the community proves me wrong at the next meeting. This effort will only succeed if all concerned parties take ownership and adopt it.

Signed Up to Lightspeed (experince log)

After the Epic Fail that is Zain@Home, I decided to follow up the footsteps of fellow blogger (Yagoob) and several of my friends and sign up with Light Speed for their internet service.
I walked up to the stand in Bahrain Mall, with my ID card in one hand and a Batelco bill in the other. Chose the 512MB plan, paid BD 10 and walked away.
The application was very simple, very easy. The guy promised connection within 10 days (lets hope) and they said they will disconnect my current Batelco inet themselves and connect their internet the same day.
I will be getting an Orange box, which is kind of a wireless router with a socket for a regular phone. No longer will their internet be without limits for Lightspeed users, they have recently imposed a threshold. But it still seems fine, the 512 line gets you 16 GB of data. After which it simply reduces to half (unlike other carriers who give you a platry .. what? 64k?). Furthermore, I can upgrade (or downgrade) my packages for free anytime I want. So if you want the unlimited package, avoid the BD 30 connection fee, sign up with any other package for a month (For BD 10) then switch packages for free.
I will follow up on that application in this blog and keep you posted on how it transpiers.

12 July, 2008

Alwaqt's anti-sectrainisim draft meeting today

Alwaqt newspaper is holding a meeting today at 4 pm for bloggers and website admins to discuss the draft of the anti-sectrainism memorandum. Despite my relative silence about the issue, I do think it is quite important. Mahmood (of Mahmood's den) made a draft and I am not sure if it will be the base for today's gathering or not. I shall attend and hope that my fellow bloggers follow suit.

07 July, 2008

Where is the Bahraini Control?

In psychology, External Locus of Control means that one blames his or her problems on external factors. For example; if one is to fail an exam, then the teacher is to blame, or the exam is hard, or the book was confusing. Never will they say that they should have studied harder. Life is not controlled by them. It is controlled by something or someone else. But not them.
External Locus of control is one of the signs of low self esteem. Where a person believes little in him or her self. A person with high self esteem has an Internal Locus of Control and rarely blames misfortune on external factors.
The reason why I am saying this to you all is that from my experience at work, going into different companies all over Bahrain, I can safely say that most Bahrainis have an external locus of control. I saw many Bahrainis, unemployed or stuck in low paying jobs. They complain that their boss doesn't appreciate them. They complain that companies don't like Bahrainis. That the government didn't "give" them a job. Not once have they looked into a mirror?
They show up to job interviews wearing T shirts and slippers. They either demand a job or beg for it. They complain that they don't get a chance to better them selves, expecting employers to pay for their education, but they never read a book or looked something up online.
Why don't you have a job? is it the government? Or evil business men? Why are you over weight? Is it god's will? Are you unlucky? Why did your business fail? Is it because of oil prices? Is it because new local laws?
It takes a strong person to stand up and say "I should have done things differently". Even if you are all alone, it takes guts to say it.
Can you spot the External Locus of Control around you? This is a cultural problem that plagues many people from school children to whole corporations.
Squint, look hard. Can you see it around you? Better still, can you see it in you?
Bahrain must change and look in the mirror.