tuque /tūk/ n Canadian English, var. toque [19th c. Canadian French, from the French toque, from the Basque tauka] 1 A close-fitting knitted cap, often with a long tapering end or tassel or pompom. 2 fig Something quintessentially Canadian.
souq /sūk/ n from the Arabic سوق var. souk 1 An open-air marketplace. 2 fig A central meeting place for the circulation of news and ideas.

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

Syria bans The Tuque Souq!

A new report from the Damascus-based independent Syrian Media Centre called "Syrian Pens Fall Silent" laments that a record 225 Internet sites and portals are now blocked in Syria.

Among the URLs that can't be accessed from within Syria's borders: social-media favourites like Facebook, YouTube, Skype, and Google's entire suite of blogs (including The Tuque Souq).

In a related report, Syrians were found to have the world's lowest adult rates of Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD), Carpal Tunnel Syndrome (CTS), and Post-Traumatic Twitter Disorder (PTTD), a relatively new affliction in which sufferers cannot be in a confined rectangular space with more than 140 characters at a time.

Also purged from Syria's domain: An-Nahar and most other Lebanese news sites, the official website of former Lebanese Prime Minister Rafik Hariri, as well as websites of dissident Kurdish and Islamist groups.

Syrian cybercafé proprietors are required to spy on their customers' surfing habits. Journalists and bloggers are routinely harassed for their online revelations; accused by the mukhabarat of "weakening state security."

In a Facebook posting to his 12 friends (all of whom are outside of Syria), President Bashar al-Assad* said: "Bashar al-Assad is lonely, might rent a film tonight. Any suggestions?"

Reached at his global headquarters, the Tuque Souq's supreme commander declined to comment on being banned in Syria. But he did say, Check out these other Tuque Souq postings about Syria:

* Bashar al-Assad is also president of the Syrian Computer Society**
** Wikipedia is not banned in Syria.

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