Blogging in Iran

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Blogging in Iran operates under special circumstances because the government restricts certain views. Blogs in general tend to be unregulated compared to other forms of expression in Iranian society. This characteristic can account for the huge popularity of blogs especially among Iranian youths. As of October 2005, there are estimated to be about 700,000 Iranian blogs (out of an estimated total of 100 million worldwide, of which about 40,000-110,000 are active, mostly written in Persian, the Iranian language).

There are also many weblogs written by Iranians in English and other languages. Most of them, though, belong to expatriates who live in North America, Europe, Japan, etc. Iran is the third-largest country of bloggers in the world after the United States and China.[1][2] With more than 700,000 Persian blogs, mostly based in Iran, the Persian language is ranked as the second-most-popular language in the entire blogosphere.[3][4]




  • 7 September - The first Persian blog is published by Salman Jariri, using manual coding[5].
  • 25 September - The blog using manual coding is published.
  • 5 November - Instructions on "How to make a blog in Persian" using Blogger's free service is published, in response to readers' requests.


  • 2 June - Cappuccino magazine is launched.
  • 13 June -, the first free blog service in Persian, is launched by Ata Khalighi Sigaroudi,[6] amongst others.
  • 10 November -, the second free blog service in Persian, is launched.


  • 20 April - Sina Motallebi, journalist and blogger is arrested.[7]
  • 26 September - Cafe Blog opens in northern Tehran.
  • 24 November - Mohammad-Ali Abtahi, then Vice President for Legal and Parliamentary Affairs, starts Webnevesht, the first blog by a member of the Iranian cabinet.[8]


  • 16 January - Protesting MPs on sit-in start a weblog.
  • 6 June - Persian Blogging festival starts.
  • November - Iranian blogger Mojtaba Saminejad arrested for writing about the arrests of three other bloggers.[9]


  • 5 January - Saeed Mortazavi, Tehran's Chief prosecutor, ordered major ISPs to filter PersianBlog and other blogging service websites.
  • 27 January/12 February - Iranian blogger Mojtaba Saminejad briefly released, then rearrested
  • October Blog Herald estimate: 700,000 Iranian blogs, of which about 10% are active
  • 11 October - Blogging courses starts in the holy city of Qom, the traditional home of Iran's religious establishment. They are run by the newly-established office of religious weblog expansion.[10]


  • Persian language was listed by Technorati among 10 most common languages among bloggers.[11]
  • 14 August - President Ahmadinejad starts his multilingual blog with one long entry.[12]
  • 13 September - Mojtaba Saminejad is released from prison, after serving term.
  • December: Mehrnoush Najafi Ragheb won city council election in Hamedan.
  • 4 December: Masoumeh Ebtekar, the first female vice president of Iran starts her blog in Persian.


  • 24 December: Almost a year after starting her blog in Persian, Massoumeh Ebtekar starts her blog in English, under the title "Persian Paradox".


  • 1 November: Hossein Derakhshan, credited with starting the blogging revolution in Iran[13] and frequently called "the father of Persian blogs"[14] was arrested at his family home in Tehran, not long after arriving there.[15][16][17] He was allowed four calls to his family, each lasting about one minute, during November.[15] Amnesty International suggested that he was likely to face charges of "insulting religion", but he had not yet been charged as of mid-December.[15]
  • November: Revolutionary Guards announced its plan to launch 10000 blogs.


  • January 1, 2009: Iranian's own video sharing site "" was created


Related books

  • We Are Iran: The Persian Blogs by Nasrin Alavi (Soft Skull Press /November 28, 2005) ISBN 1-933368-05-5
  • We the Media: Grassroots Journalism by the People, for the People by Dan Gilmor (O'Reilly, 2004) ISBN 0-596-00733-7

Academic papers

See also


  1. "Iranian hackers strike China". Financial Post. 2010-01-13. Retrieved 2010-01-26. 
  2. "Hackers Take Iran's Civil War Online". The Media Line. 2010-01-25. Retrieved 2010-01-26. 
  3. Salon. 2006-03-06. title = The revolution will be blogged. Retrieved 2010-01-26. 
  4. Herald Sun. 2009-06-18. title = The revolt in Iran continues. Retrieved 2010-01-26. 
  5. "The land of Goder and Ferfer, blogging with a Persian accent". DW-World. 2009-12-07.,,4973862,00.html. Retrieved 2010-01-11. 
  6. [1]
  7. "Three journalists transferred to notorious "special wing" of Evin prison; exiled journalist's father arrested". International Freedom of Expression Exchange. 2004-09-14. Retrieved 2009-03-18. 
  8. Fathi, Nazila (2007-12-11). "From Iran’s Fiery Leader, a Slightly Tamer Blog". New York Times. Retrieved 2009-03-18. 
  9. "Blogger Mojtaba Saminejad freed". International Freedom of Expression Exchange. 2005-01-31. Retrieved 2009-03-18. 
  10. Iran's clerics caught up in blogging craze | Technology | The Guardian
  11. BBC Persian | وبلاگ بی بی سی فارسی | رشد وبلاگ نويسی در دنيا
  12. BBC NEWS | Middle East | Iran's president launches weblog
  13. Perrone, Jane (2003-12-18). "Weblog heaven". The Guardian. Retrieved 2009-03-19. 
  14. Heller, Z.P. (2005-02-22). Retrieved 2009-04-19. 
  15. 15.0 15.1 15.2 "Document - Iran: Incommunicado detention/ fear of torture or other ill-treatment/ possible prisoner of conscience: Hossein Derakhshan (m)". Amnesty International. 2009-12-15. Archived from the original on 2009-04-20. Retrieved 2009-04-20. 
  16. Gharbia, Sami Ben. "Iranian blogger Hossein Derakhshan "arrested" In Tehran". Global Voices Online. Retrieved 2009-04-20. 
  17. Theodoulou, Michael (2008-11-20). "Iranian 'Blogfather' Hossein Derakhshan is arrested on charge of spying for Israel". London: The Times. Archived from the original on 2009-04-19. Retrieved 2009-04-19. 
  18. "The judiciary system confirmed the arrest of Hossein Derakhshan" (in Persian). BBC Persian. 30 December 2008. Retrieved 2008-12-31. 
  19. "Omid Reza Mir Sayafi, Iranian blogger Dies in Prison". GlobalVoices. Retrieved 2009-04-29. 
  20. Fathi, Nazila (2009-04-19). "Iranian President Asks Court to Reconsider Spy Case". New York Times. Retrieved 2009-04-20. 

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