First published 2007-03-10, Last Updated 2007-03-10 11:06:34

The rapid growth of the blogging phenomenon in the Middle East in the past five years, with the number of blogs today estimated in the hundreds of thousands, was marked by the rise of fresh voices that succeeded in making their presence noticed and in distinguishing themselves in this age of information overload, says Ahmed al-Omran.

Riyadh – For a very long time, almost everyone agreed that media in the Arab world did not reflect the reality of things in a part of the world that has been plagued with wars and conflicts over the past six decades. Some 10 years ago, satellite TV channels started to proliferate in the region, ushering in a new era for Arab media, especially with the introduction of channels like Al-Jazeera which changed the way we received our news. However, Arab media remained for the most part either owned or controlled by governments, and the few alternative news sources available were highly censored and access to them was limited if not nonexistent.

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