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  1. #1

    Joint Statement From Salafi Mosques and Centres Regarding Online Content Use, Dissemination and Copyright Issues

    The following is a joint statement by the various masaajid and maraakiz in relation to the content and resources published on their respective websites.

    View as PDF

  2. #2

  3. #3

    General Naseehah to Those Republishing Existing Content

    In relation to the above, we advise Ahl al-Sunnah not to engage in what are largely time-wasting activities that preoccupy them away from studying their deen. It is pointless to set up blogs and websites in order to reproduce content from other sites. On the whole there is no additional value being created here. If a person was to bring something original and of value, such as doing their own translations, or their own articles, and they are qualified and fit to do that in terms of knowledge and understanding then that is a separate matter altogether. However, we have seen over and over again, in many different places, from many brothers and sisters who are driven by a sincere zeal to give da'wah, they start operating a blog or a website or engross themselves in social media. Their actions brings nothing new and original onto the table and are overwhelmingly involved in republishing existing content. A significant amount of this person's time is then used up, day and night, morning and evening, looking after this blog or this website to such a degree it preoccupies them from seeking actual knowledge, from learning Arabic, from listening to the speech of the Scholars and so on. This in a way is a kind of trap from Shaytan in that he diverts a person away from what is more important for them (organized study of the foundations and branches of the deen) to that which he or she is not necessarily obliged or qualified to enter into and which eats up a large part of their time and which they then justify to themselves internally because they see themselves involved in the noble cause of da'wah. It is unfortunate to see large numbers of people being progressively wasted in this way. You see after them a year, two years or more and whilst they are still "engaged in da'wah" you see no signs of improvement, no progress in understanding, still unable to read Arabic, unable to listen to and comprehend the speech of the Scholars. So this is a great danger.

    As for activities which are original and useful, they include: Listening to and making transcripts of lectures, which can then be published in coordination with the respective masjid or markaz or speaker. Here a person benefits themselves and then benefits others with something original. Likewise, if a person, or a markaz or centre or a community has an email list, they can disseminate the content found on the various Salafi websites to those in their list, they can attach PDF's, link to audios and articles etc. Likewise, if a person has any useful technical or other skills, he may offer them and work in conjunction with the various mosques and centres, cooperating upon piety. Here, this person's skills will be harnessed and channelled in a useful and productive way by those mosques and centres in ways that it is most needed and will strengthen the existing infrastructure instead of making it fray at the edges with this person setting up "markaz so and so blog" and that person setting "maktabah so and so blog" - and its just one individual person, no masjid, no markaz on the ground, not a student of knowledge, no connection to Scholars, just duplicating already accessible content.

    In light of the above, we advise Ahl al-Sunnah in all places to think hard about how best their time can be used to benefit themselves and their families first and foremost (focusing on seeking knowledge), before they think about engaging in da'wah activities, and then how best can their time, resources and skills be used to bring something original and new to add to what is already out there.

  4. #4

    An Illustration of One of the Main Reasons Behind the Above Statements

    A few months ago the statements above were issued and there were many important reasons behind them. The intent was not, as some may have wrongly understood, to limit the spread of goodness. Rather, there were some very good and important reasons.

    Publishing has become very easy which means that it can be done recklessly when it is engaged in by people who are not qualified and not grounded in knowledge and who do not keep ties with the people of knowledge. We receive repeated complaints and concerns about certain websites (or networks) which are built upon systematic copying and reproduction of content from sites and authors, some of which the owners of such networks consider to be "loosely" Salafi. These platforms then became alternative sources of information, competing with the very websites where the original content was plagiarised from. One of the many consequence of this is creating confusion. The picture below illustrates one of the main concerns that were behind the copyright policy statement published above.

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    The author of the article is Naveed Ayaaz of Madeenah.Con. For many years the issue of Madeenah.Con has been apparent and clear and the individuals behind it have been spoken against with evidences. Their tamyee'ee manhaj on the one hand (towards the hizbees and the disparaged) and haddaadi manhaj on the other (towards Salafis) has been illustrated with clear evidences. The affair of this group has been known from 2007-2008 at least.

    Thus, it is not befitting that these people or their translations are promoted under the label of the "Salaf" when these people are far removed from the manhaj of the Salaf in numerous areas. This causes confusion amongst the people.

    We reiterate once more the importance of the above policy statement in that we do not want our content or content which is produced by Salafis, their mosques or institutions to be utilized in this way: To build competing platforms with the clear intent of diverting audiences away from the original source websites to dubious, confusing platforms where the objective is to gather everything and anything without any insight and without respecting the rights of others and without knowledge, awareness or even concern for important manhaj issues that are taking place and which impact the da'wah, thereby leading to the spread of confusion.


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