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Arab Big Brother show suspended (Protests against Arab reality show)
BBC News ^ | 3.1.04

Posted on 03/01/2004 4:00:23 PM PST by mhking

The Arabic satellite TV channel MBC has suspended its version of the reality TV show, Big Brother.

The series, which began on 22 February, caused a public outcry in Bahrain where it was being filmed.

On Friday 1,000 people protested against the show and a group of Bahraini MPs threatened to question the information minister on the issue.

A spokeswoman for the station told BBC News Online that the show was unlikely to be put back on air.

"We don't want to be the cause of differences of opinion, so MBC decided to suspend production of the programme Big Brother from the kingdom of Bahrain," said an MBC statement.

It added that the decision had been made "so as not to expose the network to any accusations that it is offending the virtues and traditions of the Arab world".

Following Friday's demonstration, several Bahraini women's groups protested against the show outside the information ministry on Saturday.

"I have watched the show and it must be stopped," said 34-year-old teacher Shahnaz Rabi'i, who helped organise the demonstration.

"Our religion has strong values which say boys and girls should not mix together," said Ms Rabi'i.

"This programme is a threat to Islam. This is entertainment for animals."

Segregated sleeping

The Arab version of Big Brother, which has been renamed Al-Ra'is (The Boss) in Arabic, put 12 housemates - six men and six women - from around the Arab world in a purpose-built house on Amwaj Island in Bahrain.

For the first time since the show's inception, men and women were barred from each other's sleeping quarters.

There was also a prayer room, a separate women's lounge and a mixed-sex communal area.

But these modifications to reflect Arabic customs did not go far enough for some protesters.

"It is normal for males and females to mix, but not to put them together in the same house for a long time," said 21-year-old student Maryam al-Sayrafi.

Dating game

The controversy over Big Brother came as another Arab reality TV show ended.

Al Hawa Sawa - which means On Air Together - paraded eight women from across the Arab world before suitors in a luxury apartment for 24 hours a day.

The men could contact the woman of their choice to propose marriage.

The show was criticised for being too liberal.

It ended on Monday when one of the last two contestants said she refused to get married.

TOPICS: Culture/Society; Extended News; News/Current Events

1 posted on 03/01/2004 4:00:24 PM PST by mhking
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To: Howlin; Ed_NYC; MonroeDNA; widgysoft; Springman; Timesink; dubyaismypresident; Grani; coug97; ...
This programme is a threat to Islam - it is entertainment for animals

That's a heck of a quote...

Just damn.

If you want on the list, FReepmail me. This IS a high-volume PING list...

2 posted on 03/01/2004 4:01:04 PM PST by mhking (Summon the Holy Hand Grenade of Antioch!)
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To: mhking
"it is entertainment for animals."

Oh, I see they too watched the Academy Awards show last night. ;-}
3 posted on 03/01/2004 4:05:46 PM PST by Arpege92
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To: mhking
CAUTION! Sterotyping in progress....

There's a fortune to be made in arab reality shows...
Arab Average Joe: Salah, come here, I have sold you to Ammad for marriage you will be his third wife!

Arab Survivor: Little Osama, come, I will show you how to wear this belt of silly putty!

Arab Cops: I divorce you! I divorce you! I divorce...SIKE! **slap** make me some couscous and fried goat biatch! I did not hit her hard enough officer?

Arab Fashion Court: This fashion court finds you guilty Anilah for showing your ankle, we hereby sentence you to de-footing...Muhammed, get your axe and carry out the sentence.

Arab Queer Eye: You see, when prayer time comes, it's like a smorgasboard!
4 posted on 03/01/2004 5:02:46 PM PST by Stopislamnow
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To: mhking
On a similar note, Arabs have been boycotting reality for the last few centuries. Jews and Americans are to blame for everything wrong with their civilization. Any talk about civilization has to include obligatory referrences to the 'great' things they did back in the Middle Ages when in fact all they did was store knowledge they got from elsewhere (the math was from the Greeks and Indians). I also find it odd that they hate Jews for their stereotyped avarice but it's the Arabs and Muslims who dominate OPEC - a cartel formed specifically to rip off the rest of the world. Given all that, I can understand why they wouldn't want a real look at themselves either.
5 posted on 03/01/2004 5:46:48 PM PST by pragmatic_asian
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To: mhking
...when all else fails, blame reality...Reality used to be a friend of mine....
6 posted on 03/01/2004 6:39:41 PM PST by Grendelgrey
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To: pragmatic_asian
Some very good points made there Prago.
7 posted on 03/01/2004 7:13:04 PM PST by battlegearboat
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