Batelco and The Ministry of Culture and Information in Bahrain

deviantART is a popular online artistic community. It was first launched on August 7, 2000 by Scott Jarkoff and Matthew Stephens. Angelo Sotira is the CEO.

deviantART aims to provide a place for any artist, photographer, or writer to exhibit and discuss his or her works. It also provides a community of like-minded individuals and is visited by 1.5 million individuals per day who view 35 million pages (per day). The site consists of over 3.5 million users and over 28.5 million submissions as of December, 2006. Submissions to the site grow at a rate of 40,000 per day.

deviantART now displays multiple forms of art and creative expression laid out in an extensive category structure. The artwork on display includes photography, digital art, traditional art, literature and skins for applications. The site also has extensive downloadable resources for use within artworks such as tutorials and stock photography.

I got really shocked and upset today after trying to log in to DeviantART, as the site was blocked!!! Why? I will show you the reason, which is something I quoted from the page given everytime a log in attempt, from Bahrain to DeviantART, is done:

"Site Blocked

This website has been blocked by the order of the Ministry of Culture and Information based on Article 19 of Decree Laws No. 47, 2002 regarding the organization of the press, printing and publishing in the Kingdom of Bahrain due to the publication of prohibited content on the aforementioned site."

Really, it is not fair what they´ve done and they dare to call themselves Ministry of Culture?? How could they block an art site and still be the Ministry of Culture?

I´ve joined this site since September 1st 2007, and I´ve been uploading my art to the site, so that people could take a look and give me tips in order for me to improve my skills, and I must say I had quite a lot of progress since I joined DeviantART.

And also, there is the wonderful fact that I made new friends there, and all of them are polite and have pure artist heart, which means they are people who truly appreciate art!!!

Please, help me my fellow Bahraini artists so that we can get justice and have the site back, and go on improving our skills in art.

Speaking on behalf of the above mentioned fellow Bahraini arists, I also state that any person, not necessarily from Bahrain, is more than welcome to help, and said help will be really appreciated.

Thank you very much for the attention.

The Unblock DeviantArt in Bahrain petition to Batelco and The Ministry of Culture and Information in Bahrain was written by Maha and is in the category Culture at GoPetition.