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A group of Muslim Brotherhood (MB) youths has started a campaign on Facebook and YouTube for their new news website “Ikhwan Offline,” which it hopes to establish as an alternative to the group’s official website Ikhwanonline.com.
Although the youths harshly criticized the official website, they voiced opposition to anyone looking to tarnish the group’s image.
A founder of Ikhwan Offline described the idea as “an initiative made by young brothers in an attempt to improve Ikhwan Online, the group’s official website, by way of constructive criticism.”
“We are committed to the line, but we reckon that the continuation of the Ikhwan Online website in its current form causes great harm, and that is why we adopted the initiative,” the founders stressed on their website, which remains under construction.
Ikhwan online was subject to criticism during recent months, especially with regard to its coverage of protests and mass demonstrations, which were boycotted by the Brotherhood.
Last May, Abdel Galili al-Sharnouby, the editor-in-chief of Ikhwan Online, submitted his resignation in protest against Brotherhood leaders for the way the website covered the Second Friday of Anger, a demonstration that took place on 27 May in Tahrir Square.
Abdel Gilil pointed out that coverage of the protest occurred “in light of… the Brotherhood’s opinion [of the protest].”
The day of the protest, Ikhwan Online reported that only 5000 people participated, contrary to news outlets and eyewitnesses, who estimated the number of participants at tens of thousands.
According to Ikhwan Offline founders, they resorted to creating another website after they lost hope in the official one.
The founders of the Ikhwan Offline say they seek to establish a professional media outlet unaffected by political affiliation.
Some have criticized the initiative via Facebook and called on the founders of Ikhwan Offline to submit suggestions to Brotherhood leaders rather than go public with problems internal to the group.
The founders stressed that they complained more than once, but did not witness any significant change, adding that they contacted Brotherhood media committees but did not receive a response to satisfy them.
Translated from Al-Masry Al-Youm