Monday, March 24, 2008

Call to Muslim bloggers

This is a call to Muslim bloggers and all Muslim internet types to do some more journalism. We need more more journalism and less comment. The war of positioning that has been on-going for the last few years has meant that many of us have written, rightly so, on the various matters and issues around the debates (I will be posting on these issues). Ayaan Hirsi Ali, Ed Hussain and Anjum Chowdhury amongst others provide a plethora of debate about how Muslims should respond to the various issues that face us today and we should rightly be enagaged in these debates, whether it is about the niqab, or terrorism, or Muslim schools etc. However, what has happened simultaneously is that there has been less and less journalism. Journalism is the documentation of recent history whether this is about arrests. politics, funding decisions, reports etc. Though some of this is being covered in the blogosphere, there are still many issues and events that are going completely unnoticed. This is especially important because narratives are built upon events - or reported events - it is therefore very important for us politically to ensure that all that is happening on the ground is sent out into the public sphere. As you are all aware, parts of the media are very selective about what is reported. Whether this is about the Charity Commission investigating an important mosque in Bradford, or deaths in custody in Armley jail, or attacks on Muslims in the streets, or the nature of government spending on counter-terrorism (neighbourhood policing versus community development), or the many, many other things that should all be followed and monitored as a matter of justice, in the absence of any effective news journalism from the main national Muslim media outlets, it remains the job of the bloggers to inform the rest of us in straight, evidential detail as to what exactly is going on in the rest of the country.