Is Saudi Prince Steering News Corp. Coverage?

January 12, 2013

Diana West


Ever since Al Gore sold Current TV to Al Jazeera, the network founded and funded by the oil-rich emirate of Qatar, the former vice president has drawn continuous fire in conservative media. Fox News, the New York Post and The Wall Street Journal, for example, have all castigated Gore, a man of the Left and leading avatar of “global warming,” for such hypocrisies as timing the deal to avoid Lefty tax hikes and bagging $100 million in greenhouse-gas money.
These same news outlets share something else in common: They all belong to Rupert Murdoch’s News Corp. That means they also belong to Saudi Prince Alwaleed bin Talal.

Alwaleed owns the largest chunk of News Corp. stock outside the Murdoch family. Shortly after his purchase of 5.5 percent of News Corp. voting shares in 2005, Alwaleed gave a speech that made it clear just what he had bought. As noted in The (U.K.) Guardian, Alwaleed told an audience in Dubai that it took just one phone call to Rupert Murdoch — “speaking not as a shareholder but as a viewer,” Alwaleed said — to get the Fox News crawl reporting “Muslim riots” in France changed to “civil riots.”
This didn’t make the “Muslim” riots go away, but Alwaleed managed to fog our perception of them. With a phone call, the Saudi prince eliminated the peculiarly Islamic character of the unprecedented French street violence for both the viewers at home and, more significantly, for the journalists behind the scenes. When little owner doesn’t want “Muslim” rioting identified and big owner agrees, it sets a marker for employees. Alwaleed’s stake, by the way, is now 7 percent.
We can only speculate on what other acts of influence this nephew of the Saudi dictator might have since imposed on Fox News and other News Corp. properties. (I have long argued that News Corp. should register as a foreign agent, due to the stock owned by a senior member of the Saudi ruling dynasty.) Alwaleed hasn’t shared any other editorial exploits with the public. But that opening act of eliminating key information from News Corp.’s coverage of Islamic news might well have set a pattern of omission.
Recently, such a pattern of omission in News Corp.’s coverage of the Gore-Al Jazeera deal seems evident. I say “seems,” because I can’t be entirely certain that I haven’t missed something in my research. But judging from online searches of news stories and audio transcripts, two salient points are missing from at least the main body of News Corp.’s coverage.
One is reference to the noticeable alignment of Al Jazeera with the Muslim Brotherhood, the global Islamic movement whose motto is, “The Koran is our law; jihad is our way; dying in the way of Allah is our highest hope.” The second (with an exception noted below) is reference to Al Jazeera’s superstar host and ideological lodestar, Yusuf al-Qaradawi, a leading Muslim Brotherhood figure. The influence of al-Qaradawi at the network and in Qatar — where, according to Freedom House’s 2012 press report, it is against the law for journalists to criticize the Qatari government, the ruling family or Islam — can hardly be overestimated.
Strange omission? This relationship between the Qatari-controlled network and the Muslim Brotherhood organization has been observed for years. Back in 2007, for example, Steven Stalinsky reported in The New York Sun that various Arab commentators referred to Al Jazeera as “the Muslim Brotherhood channel” and the like. What’s more, reference to the relationship appears at least in passing in coverage of the Gore deal at mainstream media sites such as USA Today and the Seattle Times. More discussion is available at some conservative outlets, including Rush Limbaugh and The Blaze. (Searches at Breitbart and the Washington Examiner, like News Corp. sites, yielded nothing on these same points. Call it, perhaps, “the Fox effect.”)
Given the rise of Muslim Brotherhood parties in the revolutions of the so-called Arab Spring — undeviatingly cheered on by Al Jazeera — the network’s Muslim Brotherhood connection, which extends to Al Jazeera’s sponsors inside the Qatari ruling family, is a crucial point to miss. Especially when it seems to be missed across the board.
The same goes for failing to mention Al Jazeera’s leading personality, Yusuf al-Qaradawi, in the Gore deal coverage. This longtime “spiritual guide” of the Muslim Brotherhood hosts one of Al Jazeera’s most popular shows, “Sharia and Life.” Among other poisonous pronouncements, al-Qaradawi has called for Americans in Iraq and Israelis everywhere to be targeted by terrorists (“martyrs”) who would then find a place in Islamic paradise. Given Al Gore’s refusal to sell his network to Glenn Beck’s The Blaze TV due to political differences, Muslim Brother Al-Qaradawi and his Shariah ideology become highly relevant. Then again, maybe one man’s news story is just another man’s clipping on the cutting-room floor.
Meanwhile, the one story I found in News Corp. coverage of the Gore deal that mentions al-Qaradawi — a column by Gordon Crovitz — neglected to note al-Qaradawi’s place in the Muslim Brotherhood. Particularly given current events, this is a little like forgetting to mention that Hermann Goring was in the Nazi Party.
Could normal editorial discretion or plain ignorance be at work here? I suppose so. Still, there is that tie-in between News Corp. and the House of Saud to consider, a partnership I find more troubling than Gore’s deal with the Qatari emirate. Not only does Alwaleed own a stake in News Corp., Murdoch owns an even more substantial stake (18.97 percent) in Alwaleed’s Arabic media company Rotana.
Within the Alwaleed-Murdoch-Rotana galaxy is a 24-hour-Islamic outlet called Al Risala, which Alwaleed founded in 2006. The channel’s director and popular “tele-Islamist” is Tareq Al-Suwaidan, widely reported to be a leader of the Muslim Brotherhood in Kuwait. The station’s “Supreme Advisory Committee” includes Abdullah Omar Naseef, who, according to former federal prosecutor Andrew C. McCarthy, is “a major Muslim Brotherhood figure” involved in the financing of al-Qaida.
Al Risala, then, would seem to fit right into the Al Jazeera-Qaradawi-Muslim-Brotherhood lineup.
We know Alwaleed has influenced Fox editorial matters before. Could that Alwaleed influence — even his very presence – account for why News Corp. hasn’t hit harder on the Muslim Brotherhood and al-Qaradawi angles of the Gore-Jazeera deal?
I don’t know, but I wonder. Don’t you?

Diana West

Diana West is a contributing columnist for Townhall.com and author of the new book, The Death of the Grown-up: How America’s Arrested Development Is Bringing Down Western Civilization.


#SMUG #ELITISTS think Believing Is Seeing at the #NYTimes?

September 3, 2011

toysYikes: NYTimes Puff Piece on Mickey Mouse Photos from Lebanon? Remember when photographers like Ben Curtis got caught placing child’s toys in rubble in Lebanon bomb sites? The NYTimes debates whether such dishonesty has any truth it it. It is almost as if they are claiming bullshit is art. Why can’t the media just apologize? Say.. gee I’m sorry… I did wrong. why can’t the propaganda machine admit that what they are doing is unethical. Instead we get a backhanded comparison to some civil war photographer that placed cannonballs to tell a story. It is annoying that this paper has no integrity. Rather then owe up to unethical behavior they are now trying to spin their sins. That takes a lot of Chutzpah.

Israel Matzav: If the Mickey Mouse was in a building that was bombed out, what is the likelihood that it was undamaged like that? And second, if the toy wasn’t planted by someone (and I believe Curtis that he did not plant it), then how is it that at just about every bombing site that was photographed during the Second Lebanon War, posed pictures of children’s toys would show up? Could that be coincidence? I doubt it.

Zombie Time: While it may be possible that these photographers all just happened to stumble on toys and stuffed animals perfectly positioned for maximum emotive response, the cumulative effect of all the pictures together (along with others visible on Slublog) suggests that some if not all of the photographers moved the toys to be better positioned for a good photo. Several readers have also written in to point out how new, clean and undamaged the toys look — unlikely, if they had all just been in an explosion. But this is not a definitely conclusive example of fraud — it’s almost impossible to prove that a photographer moved an object to his benefit. Instead, the images just feel faked.



CNN was attacking NEWS CORP for the hacking scandal… but their shit stinks too!

July 23, 2011

James HipwellA former journalist for the Daily Mirror has claimed the News Of The World was not the only British newspaper involved in phone hacking. via news.sky.com

James Hipwell, 45, alleged the illegal practice was “endemic” at the Daily Mirror while he worked under the editorship of Piers Morgan between 1998 and 2000.
The irony is this what not something that was unique to Rupert Murdochs ventures. It was leaked because of the bigotry of the U.K. public against Conservatives, but now all of the liberal media will fall like dominoes. Rupert’s Fall is ALL MEDIA’s FALL


Google abandons newspaper scanning project

May 22, 2011
Media_httpitelegraphc_emgdj

“We don’t plan to introduce any further features or functionality to the Google News Archives and we are no longer accepting new microfilm or digital files for processing,” it said in a statement. The initiative was launched in 2006 as part of Google stated mission to make all the world’s information easily available. It signed up major US newspapers including The Washington Post and The New York Times, and defunct UK publications such as The London Advertiser, plus hundreds more. The project sought to circumvent tricky copyright issues dating from the pre-internet age. By posting image files rather than text files online, it was thought newspapers would not have to negotiate rights to republish freelance content from the pre-internet era, according to The Boston Phoenix, another partner in the effort. “The [scanning] process may have turned out to be harder than Google anticipated,” the newspaper speculated.

image via telegraph.co.uk

reposting other people’s stuff is an addiction…. ‘NARF’!


A Little Bit.ly Sharia? Tech Business Builds on Libya Domain « Creeping Sharia

January 24, 2010

via creepingsharia.wordpress.com

In other words, as Gawker titled their story: Muammar Qaddafi More or Less Owns Your Links. Astute reporting below from a blog entitled Workbench:

Bit.ly Builds Business on Libya Domain

The URL shortening service Bit.ly just secured $2 million in financing from investors including O’Reilly’s AlphaTech Ventures. Though URL shorteners have been around for years, Bit.ly believes there’s money in offering Twitter-friendly short links along with web analytics to track how the links are used. The company reports that its links were clicked 20 million times last month.

So far, the news coverage I’ve read about Bit.ly has neglected an unusual aspect of the startup: It’s one of the only prominent online ventures using a domain name in the .LY namespace, which is controlled by Libya.

There are two issues that arise from this relationship.

First, of course, is the appearance of an American company doing business with Libya, a country that the U.S. considered a state sponsor of terror from 1979 through 2006. On Dec. 21, 1988, Libyan intelligence agents planted a bomb on Pan Am Flight 103 that blew up 31,000 feet over Lockerbie, Scotland, killing all 259 people onboard.

Bit.ly’s only doing a trivial amount of business with Libya — the domains sell for $75 per year from the registrar Libyan Spider Network — but its use of .LY domain is helping to popularize and legitimize the top-level domain for general use on the Internet. It’s only a matter of time before a reporter decides to ask the families of Lockerbie victims what they think of the arrangement. I can’t imagine that story going well for the company.

Even without that PR hit, there’s another potential concern for Bit.ly and any other venture that builds its business on an .LY domain. These domains are governed by Libyan law, as it states on the Libyan Spider Network site:

Any .LY domain names may be registered, except domains containing obscene and indecent names/phrases, including words of a sexual nature; furthermore domain names may not contain words/phrases or abbreviations insulting religion or politics, or be related to gambling and lottery industry or be contrary to Libyan law or Islamic morality.

So the names must conform to Islamic morality, and it’s possible that the use of the domains could fall under the same rules. What are the odds that some of those 20 million clicks on a Bit.ly-shortened URL end up at sites that would be considered blasphemous or otherwise offensive in an Islamic nation? Bit.ly conveniently provides search pages for such topics as Islam, sharia, gambling and sex, any of which contain links that could spark another controversy.

Bit.ly’s building a business atop a domain that could be taken away at any time, and the company’s only recourse would be to seek redress in the Libyan court system. Take a look at Section 11 of the regulations for .LY owners:

The Arabic language is the language of interpretation, correspondence and the construction of the Regulation or anything related to it. … In case of conflict between the Arabic and the English versions the Arabic version shall prevail.

I hope Bit.ly’s attorneys are brushing up on their Arabic. ~end

More from Domain Name Wire:

Is it wise to run a web service using a questionable country code domain?

I’ve warned about the dangers of country code top level domains. Rogers Cadenhead made some interesting observations about Bit.ly, a URL shortening service that just scored $2M in funding.

You see, .ly is the country code for Libya, which has a not-so-great history with the United States. He also points out some of the rules attached to country code domains. I’ve written before about .AE for United Arab Emirates that restricts uses within Muslim law. There’s no poker.ae, for example. The same thing goes for .ly. This presents a problem since the Bit.ly service let’s you forward to just about any web site with any topic. Technically the content isn’t hosted on a .ly domain, but the danger is there that Libya would lay the hammer on this.

No serious business should use a country code domain name other than a major, unrestricted domain without special content rules.

Update: Twitter’s selection of bit.ly is demise of popular URL shortening service tr.im:

tr.im is now in the process of discontinuing service, effective immediately.

Statistics can no longer be considered reliable, or reliably available going forward. However, all tr.im links will continue to redirect, and will do so until at least December 31, 2009.

Your tweets with tr.im URLs in them will not be affected.

We regret that it came to this, but all of our efforts to avoid it failed. No business we approached wanted to purchase tr.im for even a minor amount.

There is no way for us to monetize URL shortening — users won’t pay for it — and we just can’t justify further development since Twitter has all but annointed bit.ly the market winner. There is simply no point for us to continue operating tr.im, and pay for its upkeep.

We apologize for the disruption and inconvenience this may cause you.

(there’s money in tr.im somewhere – how about an auction?)

Another update: Feedback from tr.im users convinced them to continue the service.

April 1, 2009 at 9:34 AM
[…] about Gawker as of April 1, 2009 A Little Bit.ly Sharia? Tech Business Builds on Libya Domain – creepingsharia.wordpress.com 04/01/2009 In other words, as Gawker titled their story: Muammar […]


Jewish Internet Defense Force Says:
April 19, 2009 at 12:49 PM
Thinking we should get Tweet Deck to remove it from their URL shortening options through a campaign possibly. Also, perhaps an automated Tweet to everyone who uses bit.ly on Twitter that they shouldn’t use it, and why.


CO2 HOG™ Says:
April 20, 2009 at 12:48 AM

dividend Says:
June 1, 2009 at 3:09 PM
think we should also ban the english suffix -ly. it’s too adverb-y, and who know how those unpredictable adverbs are gonna modify…


Libya OWNS Your Shorten Links « ~Pop Culture Menace!~ Says:
September 26, 2009 at 10:39 PM
[…] Libya OWNS Your Shorten Links 2009 September 26 tags: bit.ly, Libya, Sharia Law used on internet links by popculturemenace The most used link shortener for sites such as Twitter is http://bit.ly Even I used it more than any other link shortening service out there. However, I had a huge change of heart when I came across this article: A Little Bit.ly Sharia? […]


Libya OWNS Your Shorten Links « ~Pop Culture Menace!~ Says:
September 26, 2009 at 10:41 PM
[…] Libya OWNS Your Shorten Links 2009 September 23 tags: bit.ly, Libya, Sharia Law used on internet links by popculturemenace The most used link shortener for sites such as Twitter is http://bit.ly Even I used it more than any other link shortening service out there. However, I had a huge change of heart when I came across this article: A Little Bit.ly Sharia? […]


A Little Bit.ly Sharia? Tech Business Builds on Libya Domain « Creeping Sharia « Simon Studio Analysis Says:
November 30, 2009 at 10:21 AM
[…] I hope Bit.ly’s attorneys are brushing up on their Arabic. ~end via creepingsharia.wordpress.com […]


Un:dhimmi Says:
December 11, 2009 at 1:22 AM
I mailed Robert Spencer and others about this aeons ago. I was ignored.

I use tr.im (Isle of Man) with kl.am (Armenia) as a backup for my URL shortening.

Together they spell ‘Imam;’ LOL

Using Bit.ly supports Jihadis « Avid Editor’s Insights Says:
December 15, 2009 at 8:09 AM
[…] Even with more info from Creeping Sharia […]


teksquisite Says:
December 16, 2009 at 7:21 PM
I was not aware of this and will be using a different service ASAP.

Knowledge is power 🙂

/Bev


Frugal Dougal Says:
December 21, 2009 at 9:01 PM
Possibly people are letting Twitter shorten URL’s with bit.ly because they don’t know how to use URL shorteners – this was the case with me until I was told.


teksquisite Says:
December 21, 2009 at 9:56 PM
“I mailed Robert Spencer and others about this aeons ago. I was ignored.”

The Robert Spencer site is all about the Great Robert Spencer and donating money…


Elisse Says:
December 27, 2009 at 2:09 AM
We use http://www.wvurl.com as our shortener here in West Virginia. trust it’s not connected tos omething ghastly, too…


AmasNevy Says:
December 27, 2009 at 9:31 PM
There is American Oil Companies doing billions of dollars deals with the libyan gov and i bet the gas that you are using to drive your car to work today is imported from libya

Why you people making a big deal of this


Bigbrovar Says:
January 9, 2010 at 2:29 AM
scare mongering. you forgot to add how much the families of the Lockerbe Bombing got, a million dollars each to moan their loved ones.


fred Says:
January 12, 2010 at 4:18 PM
Rate This

This article inspired us to survey webmasters to find out their feelings about bit.ly, ow.ly and other rogue country domains. Our report is here: http://4wrd.us/ahox


creeping Says:
January 12, 2010 at 5:06 PM
Thanks Fred. Interesting survey.


Naomi Litvin Says:
January 18, 2010 at 12:44 AM
I have cited your bit.ly article on my latest post on my blog.

Thank you!

Sincerely,

Naomi Litvin


Jerry2665 Says:
January 18, 2010 at 10:43 PM
http://tinyurl.com/create.php This one works good


Rex Dixon Says:


January 24, 2010 at 11:42 AM
Let’s all get facts before we post and stir up people to knee jerk reactionary type of action.

First and foremost – we would appreciate you asking Bit.ly directly before you go out and post on your site about Bit.ly and our supposed conspiracy theorized type of Libyan connection.

Here below are the most common Q&A concerning Bit.ly and Libya. Please feel free to engage us in dialog via our direct support channel which is – support@bit.ly – We are way to busy with actual work, and keeping the billions of bit.ly urls running live than to engage in a discussion via this or any blog, but we feel since a concerned member of our community took the time to e-mail us, that we would respond here directly. Please direct any further questions to the address above.

Thank you.

–Why did you pick the name bit.ly?

We picked the name bitly because it’s short and it is evocative of small bits, loosely coupled, a theme at betaworks. Bit.ly is a shorter url than bitly.com, which we also use, and echoes the name of several micro-blogging services like present.ly, song.ly and near.ly.

To purchase the domain, we paid $75 to an online registrar accredited by ICANN, the international nonprofit that governs internet domains and naming, which is headquartered in Marina del Rey, California, here in the US of A.

–Are you confident the site will be safe?

ICANN signed an accountability framework with Libya Telecom and Technology in March 2007, which sets out the telephone company’s (LTT’s) obligations as a registrar for the .ly domain and provides an internationally-accepted mechanism for dispute resolution.

ICANN sets a standard for responsibility and reliability, and we have confidence in their framework.

We’ve also got a tremendous confidence in our engineering team, which has built a redundant, secure, highly-scaleable site. Every single bit.ly short url also exists as a bitly.com page.

–Do you have any issues doing business in Libya?

We don’t do business in Libya, but it’s worth noting that on May 31, 2006 the United States reopened the U.S. Embassy in Tripoli, a step the State Department described as marking “a new era in U.S.-Libya relations.”

creeping Says:
January 24, 2010 at 12:58 PM
Rex Dixon,

If you are from bit.ly your response if more than disappointing.

First and foremost, the story came from sites including Gawker, Workbench, and Domain Name Wire – none of which you chose to leave a comment on.

In none of those stories nor here did anyone even come close to suggesting any type of “conspiracy” between bit.ly and Libya. To even suggest so is the purest of propaganda and obfuscation.

Further, no one ever suggested that your site was not secure either. But again, that is not the issue. Nor is the issue doing business in Libya, as you and other commenters suggested.

We posted the information in April 2009 and your are now responding, proving that you are clearly NOT too busy with your billions of Libyan-domain-named short URL’s to formulate a comment that does nothing to address the issues brought up by the various sources.

While you may not want your users and the general public to know that the .ly domain name is a Libyan controlled domain and disputes are potentially subject to Islamic morality law – which is completely opposed to the U.S. Constitution – other sites and blogs chose to share that information.

Users can make up their own mind based on the totality of information and potential risk.

If bitly were to unequivocally announce it will support and defend any bitly user who in the future might face legal action from a knee-jerk reaction from Libya as a result of a bitly url containing content that is “contrary to Libyan law or Islamic morality” then skeptics might have more confidence (that would apply to any business using the Libyan domain).

Just like citizens have the option to vote/note vote for politicians who make policy decisions they don’t agree with (such as removing Libya from state sponsors of terror list), they also have the option of choosing which technology services they use.


Paul W. Swansen Says:
January 24, 2010 at 1:10 PM
A great story on how business gets done.


Noah David Simon Says:
January 24, 2010 at 1:33 PM
it is amusing to me that one of the comments here compared a url shortner to petroleum. Data that can be co-opted and abused should never be compared to a raw resource.

via creepingsharia.wordpress.com


A Little Bit.ly Sharia? Tech Business Builds on Libya Domain « Creeping Sharia

January 24, 2010

via creepingsharia.wordpress.com

In other words, as Gawker titled their story: Muammar Qaddafi More or Less Owns Your Links. Astute reporting below from a blog entitled Workbench:

Bit.ly Builds Business on Libya Domain

The URL shortening service Bit.ly just secured $2 million in financing from investors including O’Reilly’s AlphaTech Ventures. Though URL shorteners have been around for years, Bit.ly believes there’s money in offering Twitter-friendly short links along with web analytics to track how the links are used. The company reports that its links were clicked 20 million times last month.

So far, the news coverage I’ve read about Bit.ly has neglected an unusual aspect of the startup: It’s one of the only prominent online ventures using a domain name in the .LY namespace, which is controlled by Libya.

There are two issues that arise from this relationship.

First, of course, is the appearance of an American company doing business with Libya, a country that the U.S. considered a state sponsor of terror from 1979 through 2006. On Dec. 21, 1988, Libyan intelligence agents planted a bomb on Pan Am Flight 103 that blew up 31,000 feet over Lockerbie, Scotland, killing all 259 people onboard.

Bit.ly’s only doing a trivial amount of business with Libya — the domains sell for $75 per year from the registrar Libyan Spider Network — but its use of .LY domain is helping to popularize and legitimize the top-level domain for general use on the Internet. It’s only a matter of time before a reporter decides to ask the families of Lockerbie victims what they think of the arrangement. I can’t imagine that story going well for the company.

Even without that PR hit, there’s another potential concern for Bit.ly and any other venture that builds its business on an .LY domain. These domains are governed by Libyan law, as it states on the Libyan Spider Network site:

Any .LY domain names may be registered, except domains containing obscene and indecent names/phrases, including words of a sexual nature; furthermore domain names may not contain words/phrases or abbreviations insulting religion or politics, or be related to gambling and lottery industry or be contrary to Libyan law or Islamic morality.

So the names must conform to Islamic morality, and it’s possible that the use of the domains could fall under the same rules. What are the odds that some of those 20 million clicks on a Bit.ly-shortened URL end up at sites that would be considered blasphemous or otherwise offensive in an Islamic nation? Bit.ly conveniently provides search pages for such topics as Islam, sharia, gambling and sex, any of which contain links that could spark another controversy.

Bit.ly’s building a business atop a domain that could be taken away at any time, and the company’s only recourse would be to seek redress in the Libyan court system. Take a look at Section 11 of the regulations for .LY owners:

The Arabic language is the language of interpretation, correspondence and the construction of the Regulation or anything related to it. … In case of conflict between the Arabic and the English versions the Arabic version shall prevail.

I hope Bit.ly’s attorneys are brushing up on their Arabic. ~end

More from Domain Name Wire:

Is it wise to run a web service using a questionable country code domain?

I’ve warned about the dangers of country code top level domains. Rogers Cadenhead made some interesting observations about Bit.ly, a URL shortening service that just scored $2M in funding.

You see, .ly is the country code for Libya, which has a not-so-great history with the United States. He also points out some of the rules attached to country code domains. I’ve written before about .AE for United Arab Emirates that restricts uses within Muslim law. There’s no poker.ae, for example. The same thing goes for .ly. This presents a problem since the Bit.ly service let’s you forward to just about any web site with any topic. Technically the content isn’t hosted on a .ly domain, but the danger is there that Libya would lay the hammer on this.

No serious business should use a country code domain name other than a major, unrestricted domain without special content rules.

Update: Twitter’s selection of bit.ly is demise of popular URL shortening service tr.im:

tr.im is now in the process of discontinuing service, effective immediately.

Statistics can no longer be considered reliable, or reliably available going forward. However, all tr.im links will continue to redirect, and will do so until at least December 31, 2009.

Your tweets with tr.im URLs in them will not be affected.

We regret that it came to this, but all of our efforts to avoid it failed. No business we approached wanted to purchase tr.im for even a minor amount.

There is no way for us to monetize URL shortening — users won’t pay for it — and we just can’t justify further development since Twitter has all but annointed bit.ly the market winner. There is simply no point for us to continue operating tr.im, and pay for its upkeep.

We apologize for the disruption and inconvenience this may cause you.

(there’s money in tr.im somewhere – how about an auction?)

Another update: Feedback from tr.im users convinced them to continue the service.

April 1, 2009 at 9:34 AM
[…] about Gawker as of April 1, 2009 A Little Bit.ly Sharia? Tech Business Builds on Libya Domain – creepingsharia.wordpress.com 04/01/2009 In other words, as Gawker titled their story: Muammar […]


Jewish Internet Defense Force Says:
April 19, 2009 at 12:49 PM
Thinking we should get Tweet Deck to remove it from their URL shortening options through a campaign possibly. Also, perhaps an automated Tweet to everyone who uses bit.ly on Twitter that they shouldn’t use it, and why.


CO2 HOG™ Says:
April 20, 2009 at 12:48 AM

dividend Says:
June 1, 2009 at 3:09 PM
think we should also ban the english suffix -ly. it’s too adverb-y, and who know how those unpredictable adverbs are gonna modify…


Libya OWNS Your Shorten Links « ~Pop Culture Menace!~ Says:
September 26, 2009 at 10:39 PM
[…] Libya OWNS Your Shorten Links 2009 September 26 tags: bit.ly, Libya, Sharia Law used on internet links by popculturemenace The most used link shortener for sites such as Twitter is http://bit.ly Even I used it more than any other link shortening service out there. However, I had a huge change of heart when I came across this article: A Little Bit.ly Sharia? […]


Libya OWNS Your Shorten Links « ~Pop Culture Menace!~ Says:
September 26, 2009 at 10:41 PM
[…] Libya OWNS Your Shorten Links 2009 September 23 tags: bit.ly, Libya, Sharia Law used on internet links by popculturemenace The most used link shortener for sites such as Twitter is http://bit.ly Even I used it more than any other link shortening service out there. However, I had a huge change of heart when I came across this article: A Little Bit.ly Sharia? […]


A Little Bit.ly Sharia? Tech Business Builds on Libya Domain « Creeping Sharia « Simon Studio Analysis Says:
November 30, 2009 at 10:21 AM
[…] I hope Bit.ly’s attorneys are brushing up on their Arabic. ~end via creepingsharia.wordpress.com […]


Un:dhimmi Says:
December 11, 2009 at 1:22 AM
I mailed Robert Spencer and others about this aeons ago. I was ignored.

I use tr.im (Isle of Man) with kl.am (Armenia) as a backup for my URL shortening.

Together they spell ‘Imam;’ LOL

Using Bit.ly supports Jihadis « Avid Editor’s Insights Says:
December 15, 2009 at 8:09 AM
[…] Even with more info from Creeping Sharia […]


teksquisite Says:
December 16, 2009 at 7:21 PM
I was not aware of this and will be using a different service ASAP.

Knowledge is power 🙂

/Bev


Frugal Dougal Says:
December 21, 2009 at 9:01 PM
Possibly people are letting Twitter shorten URL’s with bit.ly because they don’t know how to use URL shorteners – this was the case with me until I was told.


teksquisite Says:
December 21, 2009 at 9:56 PM
“I mailed Robert Spencer and others about this aeons ago. I was ignored.”

The Robert Spencer site is all about the Great Robert Spencer and donating money…


Elisse Says:
December 27, 2009 at 2:09 AM
We use http://www.wvurl.com as our shortener here in West Virginia. trust it’s not connected tos omething ghastly, too…


AmasNevy Says:
December 27, 2009 at 9:31 PM
There is American Oil Companies doing billions of dollars deals with the libyan gov and i bet the gas that you are using to drive your car to work today is imported from libya

Why you people making a big deal of this


Bigbrovar Says:
January 9, 2010 at 2:29 AM
scare mongering. you forgot to add how much the families of the Lockerbe Bombing got, a million dollars each to moan their loved ones.


fred Says:
January 12, 2010 at 4:18 PM
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This article inspired us to survey webmasters to find out their feelings about bit.ly, ow.ly and other rogue country domains. Our report is here: http://4wrd.us/ahox


creeping Says:
January 12, 2010 at 5:06 PM
Thanks Fred. Interesting survey.


Naomi Litvin Says:
January 18, 2010 at 12:44 AM
I have cited your bit.ly article on my latest post on my blog.

Thank you!

Sincerely,

Naomi Litvin


Jerry2665 Says:
January 18, 2010 at 10:43 PM
http://tinyurl.com/create.php This one works good


Rex Dixon Says:


January 24, 2010 at 11:42 AM
Let’s all get facts before we post and stir up people to knee jerk reactionary type of action.

First and foremost – we would appreciate you asking Bit.ly directly before you go out and post on your site about Bit.ly and our supposed conspiracy theorized type of Libyan connection.

Here below are the most common Q&A concerning Bit.ly and Libya. Please feel free to engage us in dialog via our direct support channel which is – support@bit.ly – We are way to busy with actual work, and keeping the billions of bit.ly urls running live than to engage in a discussion via this or any blog, but we feel since a concerned member of our community took the time to e-mail us, that we would respond here directly. Please direct any further questions to the address above.

Thank you.

–Why did you pick the name bit.ly?

We picked the name bitly because it’s short and it is evocative of small bits, loosely coupled, a theme at betaworks. Bit.ly is a shorter url than bitly.com, which we also use, and echoes the name of several micro-blogging services like present.ly, song.ly and near.ly.

To purchase the domain, we paid $75 to an online registrar accredited by ICANN, the international nonprofit that governs internet domains and naming, which is headquartered in Marina del Rey, California, here in the US of A.

–Are you confident the site will be safe?

ICANN signed an accountability framework with Libya Telecom and Technology in March 2007, which sets out the telephone company’s (LTT’s) obligations as a registrar for the .ly domain and provides an internationally-accepted mechanism for dispute resolution.

ICANN sets a standard for responsibility and reliability, and we have confidence in their framework.

We’ve also got a tremendous confidence in our engineering team, which has built a redundant, secure, highly-scaleable site. Every single bit.ly short url also exists as a bitly.com page.

–Do you have any issues doing business in Libya?

We don’t do business in Libya, but it’s worth noting that on May 31, 2006 the United States reopened the U.S. Embassy in Tripoli, a step the State Department described as marking “a new era in U.S.-Libya relations.”

creeping Says:
January 24, 2010 at 12:58 PM
Rex Dixon,

If you are from bit.ly your response if more than disappointing.

First and foremost, the story came from sites including Gawker, Workbench, and Domain Name Wire – none of which you chose to leave a comment on.

In none of those stories nor here did anyone even come close to suggesting any type of “conspiracy” between bit.ly and Libya. To even suggest so is the purest of propaganda and obfuscation.

Further, no one ever suggested that your site was not secure either. But again, that is not the issue. Nor is the issue doing business in Libya, as you and other commenters suggested.

We posted the information in April 2009 and your are now responding, proving that you are clearly NOT too busy with your billions of Libyan-domain-named short URL’s to formulate a comment that does nothing to address the issues brought up by the various sources.

While you may not want your users and the general public to know that the .ly domain name is a Libyan controlled domain and disputes are potentially subject to Islamic morality law – which is completely opposed to the U.S. Constitution – other sites and blogs chose to share that information.

Users can make up their own mind based on the totality of information and potential risk.

If bitly were to unequivocally announce it will support and defend any bitly user who in the future might face legal action from a knee-jerk reaction from Libya as a result of a bitly url containing content that is “contrary to Libyan law or Islamic morality” then skeptics might have more confidence (that would apply to any business using the Libyan domain).

Just like citizens have the option to vote/note vote for politicians who make policy decisions they don’t agree with (such as removing Libya from state sponsors of terror list), they also have the option of choosing which technology services they use.


Paul W. Swansen Says:
January 24, 2010 at 1:10 PM
A great story on how business gets done.


Noah David Simon Says:
January 24, 2010 at 1:33 PM
it is amusing to me that one of the comments here compared a url shortner to petroleum. Data that can be co-opted and abused should never be compared to a raw resource.

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