Saudi Arabia: The Muttawa are now Online


There is no doubt the use of social media is on the increase in Saudi Arabia.  Now, even prominent sheiks, clerics and Islamic leaders are discovering the advantages of social media to spread their messages.  Many Saudi clerics are now tweeting and using Facebook to reach new audiences among Saudis youth and women.  Thus far they are not facing the same kind of restrictions with social media as they would if they were to attempt and broadcast their messages on Saudi television or local papers or even in the mosques which they preach.


For example, Sheik Youssef Al Ahmed, a professor at the ultra conservative Imam University in Riyadh has 13,000 followers on Twitter.  He recently used his twitter account to hold a “town hall meeting” during which he discussed the evils of liberal agendas.  Sheik Salman Aloda has a twitter following of 113,000.  Additionally, Sheik Mohamed Al-Arefee is another popular sheik on twitter.  Al-Arefee has become a heart throb among his female followers who admire his photo showing his piercing dark eyes, jet black hair and beard.


The article states that the clerics with their twitter and facebook pages are more popular and have a greater following than bloggers who blog about Saudi Arabia.


17 Responses

  1. Yes!! Sheikhs can be heartthrobs! LOL

  2. LOL!!!!!

  3. Hmmm, interesting!

  4. I was just about to vomit. Heartthrob indeed.

  5. that is so true how do you know all that stuff do you still work for the cia

  6. WTF what is the matter with you all yes sheikhs CAN be hearthrobs i love mohammed al areefe

  7. Lol…Please don’t let him hear you call him a heart throb. Wouldn’t that be considered haram? lol 😀

  8. never a heart throb , just another dude with a beard and white outfit on like an angel 😉

  9. I’m amazed at how some American singers become heart-throbs, and I think I could say the same about some religious leaders. People will subscribe to twitter feeds if they find the person interesting, whether or not they agree. In fact, sometimes the funny ones are the best!

    Considering twitter and facebook are both very popular social media networking websites, it doesn’t surprise me that these could reach a wider audience than a blog could. Besides, tweets and facebook updates are both relatively short and simple compared to blog entries. My advice is this: Bloggers, get a twitter & facebook page for your blog! I bet you’ll have more hits on your site if that is your goal.

  10. That shows you the dangers of segregation…
    If the girls don’t know any better, anything male can become a ”heart throb”….

  11. What surprises me is that the sheiks don’t think being on facebook and twitter is “imitating the west” or supporting evil and haram social networking sites..

    I can see why they would call him a that, take of the shumagh and shave the beard, he is a relatively handsome fellow.

  12. Aafke-Art, I think I’m offended by that remark!! What about the non-segregated societies that choose the likes of Megan Fox as “heart throbs?”

  13. Layla, ”relative” is the right word, and with no competition even a ”relatively” reasonably not-too-ugly bloke can still become the object of haram adoration and inspire zina…

    robinrcks, Are you being sarcastic? Not sure here.
    Anyway if you are not, No idea who Megan Fox is but trying to make a comparison between what happens in The Wanton Wicked West and The Neurotic Dysfunctional East is of course completely useless.

    However, I am tickled pink that I still have it in me to offend people, so thank you very much.

  14. You say that these sheikhs have large followings on twitter,etc. Only in the arabic speaking world, or do they “tweet” etc. in english for those of us that have not had the chance to learn classical arabic!? Maasalaama, Amelia

  15. I believe they are targeting the arabic speaking audience.

  16. Aafke-art, you said that girls in a segregated society, if they didn’t know any better, would label anything male a “heartthrob” as if they were so enamoured at the mere sight of the species, they couldn’t differentiate between someone blessed with both good looks AND intellect and just some vapid, pretty boy! I found that patronizing. I would think you would know that woman don’t function like that. (As for Megan Fox, she was the first person to pop into my mind. She is the proud owner of the former, only).

    The fact that you are “tickled pink” to have offended me, is just lovely. So, thank YOU!

  17. I have always found it interesting that due to the segregated society, some young Saudi women will practice flirting with their Uncles.

  18. Salam alikum
    Mutawwes are hypocrites , they are living in palaces and driving Mercedeses and make a big money from showing themselves into TV

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