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Islam in Cyberspace: Muslim Presence on the Internet
Abder Rahmane Azzi


The author is head of the Department of Communication, International Islamic University, Malaysia. (Editor)


The Internet phenomenon is a historical ‘synthesis’ of the different media: print, audio and visual communication. This technology, which comes at the edge of the third information-communication revolution, brings back the pertinence of a substantial component almost peculiar to Islamic civilisation: the text. As such, the Internet, unlike radio and television, is to be viewed from the start as a positive development as far as Muslims are concerned. Needles to say, perhaps, that the content of the Internet comprises both good and evil. The morality of the medium is certainly the centre of concern for Muslims. This legitimate concern is to be addressed at different levels: individual, social, and political. The Islamic principle of moral struggle is very discrete in this context. This principle invites man to make the truth prevail when encountered with evil ways. In the Qur’ān, we read:

By the soul, and the proportion and order given to it; and its enlightenment as to its wrong and its right: truly he succeeds that purifies it, and he fails that corrupts it (91:7-10).

This requires enormous efforts to produce virtually a new ethical culture and transform the existing cultural heritage into a new form of cyberspace reality. The process is to be strengthened by a degree of moral supervision that can infuse the notion of moral and social responsibility and thus limit the negative dimensions of this medium. The Muslim data entry in cyberspace needs to be enhanced and re-examined as well. The Islamic input on the Internet is still in its infancy and much awaits to be done to convey the authentic message of Islam in the different areas of knowledge and interest. Certainly the materials that favour the existing dominant institutions at the global level overwhelm the content of the Internet. Still, the inherent qualities of the medium extend the space for other competing alternatives. As such, the Muslims need to seize this opportunity and provide a coherent, high quality and structured content whose nature can only be the right path for human beings in this new world of communication. Furthermore, definite strategies are required to deal with the contents that pretend to represent or intentionally misrepresent and distort the truth about Islam and Muslims.

The current communication technologies offer a broad spectrum of opportunities that outweigh any previous technology since the invention of writing. The new media of electronics, computing and telecommunication infrastructure are distinct from the traditional media in that the content is interactive, instantly delivered and integrative: texts, sounds and images. This technology, however, is to be used with the perspective that can channel visions and worldviews in addition to other practical functions of communication and economic transactions. The Islamic input on the Internet is scanty and originates mostly from cultural associations and private individuals who strive to disseminate the message of Islam and restructure the image of the Muslims in the Western media and literature.

The credit for what can be called Muslim’s Internet goes to independent Muslim technicians and scholars based in many Western societies where such medium emerged and where the public sphere is not very much restricted. The governments’ contribution in different parts of the Muslim world is overshadowed by the tendency to favour a form of PR content which enhances the image of a given institution or country. This new online world of computer networks has generated a new Muslim cyber community that can now interact in ways that transcend political divisions, national boundaries and other traditional barriers of communication. Even though the Internet is still an elite medium in the Muslim context, the speed by which the medium was introduced and the enthusiasm that it has generated have certainly opened new ways of communication that were until recently beyond imagination. The effects of this new media may generate a new Muslim consciousness that is shaped not only by national considerations but also by a consciousness that can be effective and instrumental in this new world of global Gemenshaft. The main ethical and cultural concern remains as to whether such medium would shake the moral foundations and basic social institutions of the Muslims society.

Sources of Islamic Input

There are hundreds of institutions, associations, private individuals and a number of government and religious agencies that seek to enhance the Muslim presence on the Internet. Let us examine the most important ones in the field.

1. Independent Cultural Nets

The pioneers of these associations include:

i) Muslim Scientists, Mathematicians and Astronomers: The site of this association provides extensive material about Islam and Muslim contribution in different fields of knowledge. The site introduces early Muslim scholars from Al-Khawarizmī to Ibn Khaldūn. It includes glimpses of Islamic civilisation, Andalusia, the Holy Qur’ān, the Prophet’s Sīrah and a variety of links to related materials.

ii) Dunya, Cyber Muslim Information Collective: A huge site for Muslims and others interested in Islam. It contains a large amount of information as ‘Digital Activism’ and ‘The Whole Dunya Bookstore and News Stand’. The latter includes links to online newspapers and magazines. The ‘Hyper Qur’ān Prophet’, a hypertext version of the Holy Qur’ān, is also located here along with ‘Islamware Mart’, where Muslims can look for share wares and commercial softwares specific to Islam.1

iii) Muslim Students Associations in America: This well-established institution provides the most comprehensive online link to the Muslim world. The institution adheres to the principles of neutrality and does not judge the content or the source of the material in question. The institution acts as a facilitator and organizer of online communication about the Muslim world. The MSA Home Page includes a number of directories such as the World of Islam Resource Guides, World of Islam Directory, Scholars Base, Translatus, Shuhuf, etc. these directories, however, are not well developed and tend to be very selective. This apparent shortcoming needs to be weighed against the fact that the institution is not a content provider but a gateway to different content providers in the Muslim world. The institution’s launch pad is the most extensive web site in the Muslim world. This particular site, apparently preferred by many Muslim educators, permits easy navigation through the site and the ability to call up information on demand.2

iv) International Institute of Islamic Thought: This intellectual and cultural foundation is committed to a critical examination of issues underlying the state of the Muslim world. The Institute advocates a particular endeavour that stresses the Islamisation of knowledge which includes attempts to integrate contemporary sciences and revealed knowledge. The Institute makes available on its website valuable Islamic resources such as the Holy Qur’ān, periodicals and publications, etc.3

The list of such associations is quite exhaustive indeed. There is a lot of redundancy that may create a sense of deja vu to the extent that every institution seems to act independently from other related entities and duplicates more or less the same content in different styles. Needless to say, this diversity is to be encouraged, provided that there is some form of centralised co-ordination which, to one’s regret, is currently missing. This has led a number of Muslim scholars to criticise this chaos in what is called Islamic Internet.

2. Governments

Until recently, much of the Muslim world was an ‘empty quarter’ in terms of the Internet access and other communication technologies. Now, many Muslim countries such as Saudi Arabia and the Gulf states and Malaysia are fully wired. This process has also affected even the least developed regions in the Muslim world. Yemen, for example, has its websites. Micro-sized satellite dishes are found everywhere in North Africa and the Gulf. Cairo has its cyber-café, and the World Wide Web has its Café Arabia. This communication explosion is left with little control. The Muslim countries do not have the same appreciation of these recent communication technologies. There are countries like Algeria which have no restriction on Direct Broadcasting System whereby individuals or groups can have direct access to foreign TV channels through satellite dishes, but seem to restrict access to the Internet. There are also other countries, such as Malaysia, which supervise access to foreign channels through local cable TV, but encourage access to the Internet and other information technologies. Still, the Middle Eastern countries seem to be selective in introducing many forms of communication technologies including the Internet. Needless to say that the Internet ‘invasion’ seems to override genuine efforts to control or transform the medium into a positive factor in the world of interactive communication. The Islamic input of governments’ sites varies from country to country. However, most of these sites are about governments’ agencies, business, advertisements, tourists’ materials and PR products, and not about Islam as such.

The highly present countries on the Web are: Egypt, Iran, Lebanon, Morocco, Turkey, United Arab Emirates, Saudi Arabia and Malaysia. Egypt’s WWW sites includes companies, personal Home Pages, colour tours, institutes such as the Museum of Egyptian Collection, Egypt TV stations and Home Pages of consulates like the Consulate of Egypt in Chicago.4 Saudi Arabian sites offer news, radio, TV and collections of Arabic entertainment. News and analyses include articles written by leading journalists and editors in the region such as Khālid Al-Ma‘īna, Abdullāh Al-Rafā‘ī, and Mustafā Amīn whose columns appear in such  journals as al-Sharq al-Aawsat and al-Muslimūn. These sites also offer programme listings of many radio and TV stations through Orbit Satellite and Television Network.5

There are many sites that are being fuelled by commercial drives. The most overwhelming examples are Arabia On Line from Jordan and Arab Net for the Gulf. The US-Arab Chamber of Commerce has its ‘1001 Sites’ on the Web. The Internet is gradually becoming a medium of transactions and may soon become as essential carrier of business life in many parts of the Muslim world.

The most active universities on the web are those of Pakistan and Turkey. The International Islamic University Malaysia seems to have the best university site in the Muslim world. The site of this university includes a network of Islamic resources as well as literature of different departments and faculties. Educators and intellectuals are challenged to be acquainted with the university’s vision of integration of revealed knowledge and social sciences. The site in question incorporates the University’s Research Centre’s databases on different cultural and scientific endeavours in the Muslim world.6

The data classification on the Internet including those provided by search engines seem to favour the actual socio-political divisions in the Muslim world. The Arab world, for example, is treated independently from the Muslim world. The same phenomenon is reproduced when such terms as Middle East, South Asia, and North Africa are used. This categorisation limits the ability to search data and material about the Muslim world. This can be seen in such sites as Arab Net,7 Arab World Online, Model League of Arab States, Middle East Network, Regional Arab Information, Arab resources, Arabia, etc. The same trend characterises individual Muslim states that are portrayed as independent entities. This includes such sites as Oman Net, Qatar Online, Iran Net, Djazair-Online,8 etc.

3. Private Individuals

There are many scholars and private individuals who are using cyberspace to provide Islamic resources and particular experiences pertinent to different regions in the Muslim world. The most apparent example is the Home Page of one of the most eminent Muslim scholar Shaykh Yūsuf al-Qaradāwī. This Home Page virtually includes Qaradāwī’s Library which contains a large number of references about a wide variety of Islamic topics including sharī‘ah, da‘wah, Islamic economy, the Holy Qur’ān, the Sunnah, ‘Aqīdah, education, Islamic awakening, literature, etc. These highly valuable English language materials, originally sponsored by the General Institute of Islamic Culture of al-Azhar University in Egypt, address the contemporary concerns of Muslims abroad. The site also includes Fatāwā, research articles, comments, etc. and provides the opportunity for interactivity.9 The new generation of Muslim students is also busy trying to make their presence on cyberspace, a fact of modern cyber world. The example is a Home Page constructed by a student at the Department of Communication, International Islamic University Malaysia. The Home Page in question introduces the home region of the students of Kashmir and offers a large number of Islamic resources and links.10 This writer’s Personal Home Page also provides resources in the filed of Islamic communication for students and scholars.11

4. Muslim Minorities

There are Muslim minorities in many parts of the world which seek to reaffirm their attachment to Islam and provide the basic Islamic resources for both Muslims and non-Muslims. The most active Muslim minorities in cyberspace are those of India, South Africa, Singapore and Hong Kong. The web site of a Muslim association in Singapore, for example, provides valuable Islamic resources.12 These Muslim minorities seem to operate in an environment that is advanced in terms of use of online and multimedia. Furthermore, the ability to communicate in English has given these Muslim minorities the opportunity to register their effective presence on the Internet to a greater extent than in most of the Muslim majority countries.

5. Political Parties

There are many political parties in the Muslim world which use cyberspace to propagate views of different political orientations. These parties include Islamic parties and movements, both those that are generally recognised as such and those that are not so recognised. The most active Islamic parties and movements are those of Lebanon, Algeria, Iran, Libya, Pakistan, Palestine and Turkey. This controversial development is sensitive and complex indeed. The main issue that the Muslims will soon face is whether they are ready to carry on their local disputes and conflicts at this global level and bear the consequences of making such internal structures vulnerable to influential global powers. The cyberspace is an open space indeed. Nonetheless, the questions of moral and social responsibility have not been very much discussed in the context of the Muslim society.

6. Islamic Centres in the Western World

There are many Islamic centres in U.K and USA in particular, which seem to introduce the basic principles of Islam to the cyber community in these societies and abroad. These sites provide texts as well as audio material. The latter includes, for example, recitation of the Holy Qur’ān, ie Huthayfi recitation, etc. The example of such sites is the Islamic Centre in Blacksburg Virginia that has developed an Islamic Audio Studio among other things.13

7. Specialised Western Centres and Agencies

There are many centres and institutions in England, the Unites States, etc. which specialise in Islam and Muslim affairs. A number of these represent a continuation of Orientialism that sought to examine Islamic heritage from the perspective of an outsider. This enterprise is envisioned for many practical purposes. There are other institutions that specialise in certain regions of the Muslim World: Middle East affairs, Iranian affairs, North African affairs, South-eastern Asian affairs, etc. As such, the Muslim world is not treated as a single coherent entity. Rather, this specialisation reflects the state of division that characterises the Muslim Ummah today. The common example of such institutions is the Institute of the Arab World in Paris which specialises in different aspects of Arab culture: literature, education, politics, etc. Generally, these institutions provide more extensive material on Muslim than those found in many specialised institutions in the Muslim world. Needless to say that the content provided needs to be viewed critically and in the right perspective.

There is a strong sentiment among many Muslim scientists that what we can call Islamic Internet is largely chaotic. Efforts to provide Islamic resources are very often duplicated to the extent that many diverse sites are doing almost exactly the same thing with different techniques. A call has been made to establish a forum of World Islamic Network whereby these efforts could be used in more productive ways. This unification process requires co-operation of Islamic content providers, a task that seems to be unattainable in the conditions presently prevalent in the Muslim world. The medium of the Internet inherently encourages diversity whereby access, inter-activity and cost are no major obstacles to such communication. The gate-keeping function performed by traditional media of newspapers, radio and TV is hardly being performed on the Internet. There exists no institution right now which can filter the proclaimed content, authentic or otherwise. The specificity of the medium should not exempt the providers of Islamic input from co-ordination that would ensure authenticity and desired effect. This co-ordination should not only be of a technical character, but ought to be, above all, a kind of moral supervision.

8. Unauthentic Sources of Distortion

The dark site of this medium is the presence of many sites that intentionally seek to distort the message of Islam and image of Muslims and thus mislead the end users. These sites are mostly motivated by evil purposes, often of a political nature. The striking example is the heretic site called ‘The Queer Masjid for Muslim Homosexuals’ which proposes to publish, among other things, a book on the homosexual jihād.14 The content directly insults Muslims and misguides others as to the true nature of Islam and the position of Islam with regard to such immoral forms of behaviour as homosexuality. A number of sects, particularly in India, are also using this cyberspace to propagate uncertified claims in the name of Islam.

9. Muslim Media on the Internet

Many major daily newspapers in the Muslim world are on line. These consist of government-owned papers, independent papers and party papers.

The prominent papers such as al-Qabas (Kuwait), al-Sharq al-Awsat, (Saudi Arabia), Berita Harian (Malaysia), al-Watan (Algeria) were first to go on line. Shortly, the rest of papers followed. Now, we can find Afghanistan Daily News, Albanian Daily News, Maroc Hebdo (Morocco), al-Ayyām (Bahrain), Dawn (Pakistan), Bangladesh Newsletter, Berserkistan, (Bosnia and Herzegovina), Egyptian Gazette, Ittila‘ āt (Iran), al-Anwar (Lebanon), Kompas (Indonesia), al-Dastur (Jordan), etc. Many of these papers are published in the language of the former colonial powers: French in North Africa and Lebanon, and English in the rest of the Muslim world. Note that the French news agency, Agence France Presse (AFP) puts the French-language papers in North Africa and Lebanon under the umbrella of Francophone papers. This classification suggests that language extends the sphere of influence of certain nations even though the content of such language is fashioned by local considerations. Nonetheless, the different languages used by Muslims such as Arabic, Persian, Urdu and Malay are quite well represented. The most established ones includes al-I‘tidal, al-Jazīrah, al-Madīnah (Saudi Arabia) al-Nahr, al-Safīr (Lebanon), al-Sha‘b (Algeria) and al-Sabīl (Jordan) in Arabic; Ittilā‘āt (Iran) in Persian; and Urdū Akhbār (Pakistan) in Urdu; and Jawa Post (Indonesia) in Malay. Evidently, the prominent papers in the Muslim world are either government or semi-independent papers. The party press is not quite developed for many reasons among which are the underdeveloped political environment and lack of financial support. The exception to this rule is the Egyptian party press whose historical traditions provide the possibility to reflect, to a large extent, the diverse political orientations in Egypt. This party press, however, is quite invisible on the Internet. There are a number of Islamic movements, including the outlawed movements, which use the Internet to disseminate certain materials in the form of newsletters. The contents of these documents tend to be highly opinionated, sporadic and outdated in most cases. The print media institutions include a number of Islamic academic journals, bookstores and electronic news-stands.

A number of radio stations are also online. The example of these are Radio Midil of Morocco,15 Radio Tunis of Tunisia,16 etc. The few TV stations provide only print texts about programmes and summary of major reported events. The example of the stations on the Web is Kanal D of Turkey and Iran Sima of Iran,17 the latter is provided on-demand. Awmag (waves) in the MSA Web is probably the most exhaustive site which provides access to online radio and TV emanating from the Muslim world. A number of major news agencies in the Muslim world are using the Internet to provide local news, financial and economic services, etc. The example of these are the Algerian Agence Presse Service18 and the Malaysian News Agency Bernama.19 This seemingly extensive presence does not necessarily reflect Islamic input as much as classical material about local politics, official positions and PR discourses.

Duplication vs Originality

The Islamic input on the Internet is not by any means meagre. The efforts by a number of cultural associations need to be appreciated. Nonetheless, the initial impression about Islamic Internet is the aspect of repetition and lack of contemporary material on the different fields of knowledge. The Internet cannot be expected to produce knowledge as such. It can provide the space through which knowledge can be disseminated. Thus, the Internet can only reflect what a given society or civilisation can produce and has produced. The Muslim intellectuals and government institutions of research and higher learning bear responsibility of the shortage of Islamic input. Clearly, thus technology offers more space than what Muslims can deliver and use at the moment.

The Islamic content on the Internet tends to reflect the existing socio-political arrangement in the Muslim world with slight edge for the independent, highly reputed cultural associations. As known, not everything which carries the connotation of Islam is Islamic. In fact, much of the content produced by individuals and institutions in the Muslim world is secular material and is not much different from the Western model. Needless to say, such material can create immediate positive reaction from the online consumers who happen to come across such sites. The Internet seems to have this ability to make illusions look like a reality. In any case, the Internet is a reality and has to be recognised as such.

The Muslims can celebrate the fact that many original Islamic resources are online now. The most important of these are the Holy Qur’ān and the Sunnah of the Prophet (sws). The Holy Qur’ān is now accessible in many different languages. The text is indexed and classified for easy access. Islam, however, is to be disseminated through virtually unlimited number of ways including intellectual production, da‘wah and other diverse processes that can translate Islamic values into a living reality.

The Emerging Cyber Muslim Community

The Internet audience research is not yet available in the Muslim context. Nonetheless, a sizeable Muslim audience both in the Muslim and Western world is already a part of this global cyber community. The cyber community in the Muslim world is an elite audience composed of engineers, academicians, students and officials. This technology requires PC availability, electronic data and telecommunication infrastructure. The PC penetration in most parts of the Muslim world is quite low. The rates of illiteracy, not to mention computer illiteracy, vary from high to moderate. This has adversely affected access to such technology. The cost factor is another variable that makes computers the instruments of the rich. Further, telecommunication technology is not well developed, a fact which hinders the development of both intra and international computer networks.

This elite cyberspace community may grow and set the basis for a much important civil society in the Muslim world. However, neither the Internet users are close to a ‘critical mass’ stage nor is the Internet treated as a valuable market platform in many parts of the Muslim world. While the Internet market is saturated in America and AT & T expects electronic commerce via the Internet to reach $20 billion by the turn of the century in Asia alone, the Muslim region still suffers from inaccessibility.

Old Concerns and New Challenge

The fact the many Muslims are interacting with each other as never before is bound to have major culture, political and commercial ramifications. So far, the Internet seems to mainly affect the elite segment in the Muslim world. The Muslim intellectual community in the Western world has the advantage to be the first to use and introduce Islamic inputs in this new medium of communication. Soon, the medium gained grounds among educational institutions, intellectuals, business entrepreneurs and government agencies in many parts of the Muslim world. Today, the new communication technology is already affecting the Muslim environment and it is increasingly becoming a new reality that is not only shaping the way the Muslims communicate with each other but the way they think and perceive the local and global worlds.

The apparent positive outcome of this instant two-way communication is that many Muslim can have communication and share knowledge and experience with no apparent restriction. This may lead later to the emergence of a new Muslim cyber community that is not only shaped by national considerations, but by the universal values of Islam. The Muslims can also have access to knowledge and information that were until recently beyond reach. The commercial Internet also may change the way the Muslim do business and may improve their economic efficiency.

This communication technology produces drawbacks that raise solemn cultural concerns in the Muslim context. The most important component of this is the presence of pornography, violence and other meaningless content which adversely affect the new vulnerable generation of Muslims. This concern is not actually new since the media of television and video have previously generated criticism and resistance by the Muslims and the non-Muslim alike on the same score. The new element of such new technology is the inability to exercise any form of supervision and control. On the societal level, it is not quite clear whether this medium will weaken the family and erode the role played so far by interpersonal communication and social network in the transmission of knowledge, culture and heritage. There seem to be various political implications too. This technology can improve access to government. Contrarily, the medium can be used to spread rumours and engage in ‘dis-information campaign’ against governments and institutions.

Recently a number of software and technical devices have been introduced to block incoming and outgoing unwanted material and guard against security breaches on the Internet. The basic function of this “firewall” is to intelligently isolate unwanted material. All traffic coming from the ‘outside’ of a firewall is constrained to pass through a single choke-point. Because it does so, the firewall has the opportunity to check that the data passage is acceptable – that is, it conforms to the criteria of the site. Similarly, a firewall ensures that outbound traffic is also non-threatening or that people within your organisation are not communicating with outside entities that you have chosen to disallow. Other blocking software such as Cyber Patrol, Cyber Sitter and Cyber Watch are developed to keep certain segment of end users, such as children, away from inappropriate sites on the Web.

Still censorship is becoming an important issue in the Muslim context. The old North South debate between advocates of free flow of information and promoters of balanced and guided system of communication has recently resurfaced. The political authorities find some kind of information objectionable. There is concern over the possible threat to moral values and traditions posed by the new medium of the Internet. The Internet provider in the United Arab Emirate, for example, is taking steps to censor Web sites that are deemed to violate moral standards. The perceptions about Islam and Muslims can now be restructured in such a way that a balanced and genuine representation may emerge in such a way that the Muslim master and extend their presence in this cyber world of communication.

Islamic Internet in the Age of Globalization

The Internet has generated a lot of enthusiasm combined seemingly with certain fear that such a medium may challenge the foundation of basic social institutions which have so far ensured some level of socialisation: educational, and socio-political. This enthusiasm-fear complex is historically associated with almost every new medium of communication. The invention of writing (6,000 BC), the printing press (15th Century), film and radio (1920s) and Television (1959s) have all engendered a psychological and cultural shock whereby people are prompted to make various adjustments in their life ways including the ways of communication. McLuhah, an advocate of technological determinism, has echoed this state of mind when he proclaimed his famous statement that ‘the medium is the message’. To him, every new medium alters perceptions and ways of thinking and thus generates certain resistance among the end users. The author maintains that such a process disturbs old habits and forces people to adopt new conventions through a tedious process of refitting and reconciliation. This view, however, is mostly technical, emphasising ways rather than contents of communication. As such, little is said about whether a new medium transfigures or deforms the nature of existing cultures and values. It is my considered opinion that the Internet is both a medium and a message. The content of such medium mainly reflects the already existing arrangements at the economic and socio-political levels both locally and globally. However, it seems in the fitness of things that the Muslims should use cyberspace in the most meaningful way to disseminate the true values of Islam. As for the dichotomy of good and evil, it seems to be inherent in every medium.

Muslim civilisation thrived when the message of Islam was conveyed through many channels, including oral and written communication. The Muslims used the written material effectively when the Holy Qur’ān, the Sunnah (first) and the major works of the Muslim scholars were preserved and documented. In recent times, the Muslims have also to utilise the modern media of newspapers to promote the cause of national independence from the control of the colonial powers. The audio-visual communication of radio and television has, however, shrunk Muslim participation in this content. The Muslims produced little content in the form of video materials. As such, they consumed a form of mass culture produced by others. The introduction of the Internet has brought back the importance of written material of which the Muslims have produced great works in literature, art, science, jurisprudence, etc.

The Muslim input on the Internet is currently modest. Certainly, the dissemination of the Holy Qur’ān and Hadīth outweighs any other content. This presence must be celebrated as the greatest event this medium has produced as far as Muslims and human beings in general are concerned. Nonetheless, much remains to be done on how to reproduce Islamic knowledge and ethics in different aspects of contemporary cultural, socio-political and economic life of society in general.

The negative aspect of the new medium of the Internet is the presence of the unauthentic content that pretends to represent Islam. There are sects, alien or deviant from the mainstream of Islam, which seek to spread certain ideologies in the name of Islam. This is the case of some important sects in India. There are many Websites that intentionally seek to distort the main thrust of Islam and paint the Muslims with certain classical biased stereotypes. Thus, there is an urgent need to develop constant awareness and start a vigorous campaign to expose and rebuke such provocative and demeaning material. The authentic Islamic input on the Internet could ensure that the message of Islam is universalised.

Suggested Readings

1. Featherstone, Mike and Burrows, Roger, Cyberspace,Cyberbodies, Cyberpunik: Cultures of Technological Embodiment (London: Sage Publications, 1995).

2. Steve Jones, Cybersociety: Computer-mediated Communication and Cultural (Thousand Oaks, Califs: Sage Publications, 1995)

3. Kahin, Brain and Nesson Charles, Borders in Cyberspace: Information Policy and the Global Information Infrastructure (Cambridge, Mass: MIT Press, 1977).

4. Brain Loader, The Governance of Cyberspace: Politics, Technology and Global Restructuring (London: Routledge, 1997).

(Courtesy: The ‘Islamic Studies, Quarterly’, Islamabad)




















14.  http://www.geocities    .com/West Hollywood/Heights/8977

15.  http://www/





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