I am SOOO angry!

Moon

New member
I just have to share this with you all.

October 19th, I went to this mini concert of an Egyptian ud player. Furthermore, my teachers performed and one of them gave a short work shops for the guest who liked to participate. Also, information was given about what Oriental dance is etc.

There was a photographer present, and I heard he was making pictures for the university newspaper. So, I was very exited the past few weeks and could hardly wait to read the article about this great evening.

This is what the article said, the literal translation:
"Seduction
The women who participated in the bellydance workshop of October 19 were told that the purpose of bellydancing is to seduce men. However, they couldn't try if they already mastered this art, as all male visitors left already during the break.
Before the break, Haytham Safia gave a concert. He played the U'd, an Arabic instrument which looks like a long, pear shaped guitar. He played traditional and modern music together with percusionist Osama Mollagi, for an audience of about 25 people.
Organiser of the event: "We knew in advance not many people would come, but the fortunately, the people who came were there especially because of Haytham, and they apreciated the music.""

What the ******??? :protest:
No-one told us bellydance is meant to seduce men! Really, I was there and no-one said that and I know my teacher would never say such thing. And during the workshop, I was dancing next to a guy!!!!
Of all the beautiful pictures they could have made, they placed one of my teacher showing only her back and bottom in a hipscarf.
I really don't believe this! This evening was designed so that the audience could listen to Egyptian music and learn a bit about Oriental dance! Why has this stupid journalist have to spoil everything and write stuff that never happened????
I'm planning to write them a letter and ask for rectification. My teacher agreed with me on this.

I could continue this rant forever, but I have to go to class now.
 

Mosaic

Super Moderator
I'm planning to write them a letter and ask for rectification. My teacher agreed with me on this.

I could continue this rant forever, but I have to go to class now.

That is so rude and utterly mean of the journalist, I would be ranting as well. I think all of the dancers who were there and any of your friends as well should write not only to the journalist and demand an apology but also cc the editor and write a letter to the your say part of the newspaper (if your newspaper has a letter section). Also send any such letters to a rival newspaper and ask them to print it.

Don't let that nasty journalist get away with it!
good luck.
 

Ankhet

New member
I think that journalist should have done some research before writing that. What he wrote and the picture is just plain ignorant! I agree, do not let him get away with it!:naghty:

(((hugs Moon)))
 

Stella Zahir

New member
Maybe..............

Maybe he would like to be sedused by a bellydancer!!!:pray:!!!Only in his dreams!!
I agree with the other members do not let him get away!!!!!:mad:
 

Aisha Azar

New member
Newspapers and belly dance

Dear Moon,
I no longer try to get any positive press from newspaper journalists. In 33 years of dancing, I have yet to have a really good piece done on myself and have seen only one that did justice to the dance and dancers in all that time. The first time I was ever interviewed, the journalist came to one of my classes and sat in to watch and then interviewed me. I was SO excited!! When it came out in the paper, she called the article "They belly up at the YWCA". I almost died.
One of the dance companies I was with years ago was asked to perform and be interviewed on a very serious Public Television program called "Women in Dance". We went, did a 15 minute show and were interviewed. In our show we performed belly dance and folkloric dance. The interviewer's first question??? "So, do you like, pop out of cakes?" I was taken totally by surprise, but one of the dancers who was thinking on her feet replied in a very caustic voice. "We prefer to dance AFTER dessert."
So, the lesson is, we keep falling into the same traps and wanting positive press from the papers, but it just does not seem to be in the cards that this is something that is going to happen very often.
Regards,
A'isha
 

Ranya

New member
Moon I am so so sorry for what happened and trust me if it happened around here I definitely would do something about it! I think writing a letter to the editor and forcing him to correct the stuff is a very good suggestion.
If that doesn't work, call me over and I promise that guy will have a lifelong trauma from that!
 

Aziyade

Well-known member
Moon, I'm sorry too. I can imagine and appreciate your frustration and anger. Can you write a letter to the editor to try and undo some of the damage?
 

Moon

New member
Thanks for the support ladies. Aziyade, I'm defenitely going to write a letter. I just send an e-mail to one of my fellow students who was also at the concert and also studies at this university. I asked what she thinks about the matter, if she wants to write a letter too, or we could do it together. I'm going to send one anyway.

A'isha, that is so frustrating! I thought an oppertunity to provide the general public with some good information would be a great idea. But this journalists apparently only write what they want to hear. I wouldn't have minded so much if he had asked an ignorant question at my teacher, but he didn't ask anything at all. I don't even know if the person who wrote this is the same guy as the one who made the pictures. If so, he was probably too busy taking pictures of my teacher's butt to listen to the information about the dance!
 

Safran

New member
Aww, Moon, I am sorry about what happened. But I am glad you're taking action against it. Definitely send a letter and ask others to send it. Is you teacher going to write or sign your letter as well?

I can't actually recall any situations that bad with the bellydance in our media (knock wood!), although it has got quite a bit of attention during the past years. There was a moment where the only male dance teacher of last year's festival was titled "the world's only male bellydancer" by a gossip paper, but that is the only colourful incident I can remember.

,
The interviewer's first question??? "So, do you like, pop out of cakes?" I was taken totally by surprise, but one of the dancers who was thinking on her feet replied in a very caustic voice. "We prefer to dance AFTER dessert."

:clap::clap::clap:
 

Shanazel

Moderator
:rolleyes:

A year or two ago, a reporter from the local paper did an article on the classes a friend teaches here in town, but the emphasis was on "belly dance for fitness" and mentioned how the students had broken out in a gentle sweat by the end of the class and what a nice workout it was. Nothing about her years of dancing, or teaching, or the type of dance she taught... At least there were no ridiculous remarks about seduction. Guess the reporter thought her students were all too sweaty for that.
 

Aniseteph

New member
...At least there were no ridiculous remarks about seduction. Guess the reporter thought her students were all too sweaty for that.

And too sweaty to jump out of cakes?
:think: you can get away with a bit "glowing" for seduction, but its plain unhygienic when using cake....:naghty:

Moon, I agree the editor should have it pointed out what a lousy job of reporting the journalist did.
 

Farasha Hanem

New member
Bellydancers, UNITE!

Moon, I am so sorry that you had such an awful experience. Perhaps if you can get the address of the paper this "journalist" (and I use the term loosely) writes for, maybe we can all write letters of complaint to let them know that their writer has misinformed notions of what bellydance is (and isn't)? It sounds like this guy needs to experience the wrath of angered bellydancers on a world-wide level! :mad::mad::mad:
 

Lydia

New member
Hi Moon sorry to hear this....
I never allowe anybody to film or write anything if i did they did not agree on signing a contract before hand that i will see the finished product.before it go,s out
tv or film or magazine whatever it is.
I hade shows where i walked up strait to camera people and pulled out the electric wires from their camera,s if they did not ask me for permission before hand
people always think o cool i will be on tv,or in the papers ..not treu you must be always carefull as you can see now...
good lesson for the next time....take care Lydia
 

lizaj

New member
Dear Moon,
I no longer try to get any positive press from newspaper journalists. In 33 years of dancing, I have yet to have a really good piece done on myself and have seen only one that did justice to the dance and dancers in all that time. The first time I was ever interviewed, the journalist came to one of my classes and sat in to watch and then interviewed me. I was SO excited!! When it came out in the paper, she called the article "They belly up at the YWCA". I almost died.
One of the dance companies I was with years ago was asked to perform and be interviewed on a very serious Public Television program called "Women in Dance". We went, did a 15 minute show and were interviewed. In our show we performed belly dance and folkloric dance. The interviewer's first question??? "So, do you like, pop out of cakes?" I was taken totally by surprise, but one of the dancers who was thinking on her feet replied in a very caustic voice. "We prefer to dance AFTER dessert."
So, the lesson is, we keep falling into the same traps and wanting positive press from the papers, but it just does not seem to be in the cards that this is something that is going to happen very often.
Regards,
A'isha

Oh this rings sooo true. The local college pulled out form funding leisure classes this academic year and I went private. headlines in local freebie paper. belly up for classes with a picute of a NY(!) dancer they must have googled. I went in "on the bounce" ,as we say, OK you lot number one my classes carry on so you are misleading the readers ( this had effect) and where did you get the picture and why the silly headline..Belly Dance was only one of the classes closed..ah you thought it made good cover.
next issue handsome article with tasteful picture of my own good self!
Go back a couple of year's radio interview with local girl reporter.
"Oh I believe belly dance is good for your sex life?" Oh how original:(
my response: " Mmmm do you ask Morris dancers the same question..after all most dance is about fertility and courtship and ...I'm usually too tired for anything after a frantic work out.what about you?"
Her interview was edited when it went on air!

Never ever trust the media not the newspapers, the radio or the TV..they just want to make milage out of your endeavours and preferably to make a fool of folks.:mad:
 

janaki

New member
You go girl!!! This bellydance world needs people like you to set things right. As A'isha said it happens repeatedly every where. I would like to post later about soemthing similiar/uglier happening in HK right now. It is sooo ugly. I am wating for a clearance signal so that I can post it.

Lydia advise is also great. I strated to do the same like Lydia. Some of the titles I was associated in the press are belly aches, Shake your belly, trim your belly with belly dance. :mad::mad::mad:. All that time I was thinking they were going to write something cultural about this dance.
 

KuteNurse

New member
I think that journalist should have done some research before writing that. What he wrote and the picture is just plain ignorant! I agree, do not let him get away with it!:naghty:

(((hugs Moon)))

Moonie,

Ankhet has a good point. You should email this journalist telling him about oriental dance, origin etc and ask him why he would say such things about such a beautiful dance? If you won't well, just let me at him! lol
 

Moon

New member
You are all so sweet! It's great to be able to talk with people who uderstand my feelings!
I talked about the matter yesterday with one of my fellow students who was also at the concert, and she told me she spoke again with our teachers. She said our teachers are going to send a letter to the newspaper together to tell them what bellydance really is about and this journalist just made up his whole story :D
I hope they'll ask to see future articles in advance before it's placed in newspapers.

Aniseteph said:
you can get away with a bit "glowing" for seduction, but its plain unhygienic when using cake....
:lol:
 

lizaj

New member
You are all so sweet! It's great to be able to talk with people who uderstand my feelings!
I talked about the matter yesterday with one of my fellow students who was also at the concert, and she told me she spoke again with our teachers. She said our teachers are going to send a letter to the newspaper together to tell them what bellydance really is about and this journalist just made up his whole story :D
I hope they'll ask to see future articles in advance before it's placed in newspapers.


:lol:

The problem with dealing with journalists is their agenda and livelihood. newspapers want to sell copy and sensational or sleazy items sell and the jounalist who brings that home to the editor/owner keeps his or her job or gets the fee. You only have to look at the Death of Diana. Selling photos of a dying woman..wot!
They are not really interested in serious academic debate on the origins of belly dance. I once complained to the BBC and the Arts Council that they allowed Brucie Forstyth and his crew put on a Day of Dance feature on channel one that was advertised it was supposed to be all about getting people to dance for their health and about local dance communities. Yes there was a bit but when it came to the mass dance in London...did we see much of the hip hoppers, salsa and Indian dancer...did we hell ....it was all about the old poser and did either reply to me, did they h....? Fortunately some newspaper crits did make the same comment as I ?
I also complained to ITV about their featuring of belly dance only at the sleaze end of the market and did they not consider it non PC as this was a dance of another 's culture and there was so much more to it. Did I get a reply...nah...
Forget the media and their promises..never trust them for one minute or make sure you cannot be edited or manipulated and that isn't easy.
 

BellyDance Girl

New member
Moon, I am so sorry to hear this. I was a journalism major in college ('93 - oh my ...). My first job was at a newspaper, then at a radio station. I hated it. Ethics consistently takes a second seat to profit; and, the shortest route to profit is sex or violence. What would happen if hundreds or thousands of bellydancers signed a petition condemning the paper. Wouldn't that be newsworthy? Is there another paper, or tv or radio station in competition for advertising dollars? Perhaps you should take your story and protest to another media vehicle. It is sad to say but true - you can manipulate the media just as they have manipulated you. Media competitors LOVE to expose wrongdoings to advertisers and audiences. Send a press release to a local TV station exposing the newspaper's 'yellow journalism.' Tell them about any action you decide to take:
you wrote a letter to the editor and it was ignored,
you and others submitted a petition to the paper,
you and your associates write a boycott statement and list all the advertisers in the newspaper,
you sent these letters to the advertisers explaining why your group will not buy/use their services, collect donation and place a classified ad (usually less expensive than display ads) in the same newspaper explaining your boycott,
schedule a picket line in front of the newspaper's offices and call the tv stations - they'll eat it up - at least they would here in the states.

You have the truth on your side; therefore, you have much power at this point. Use it and keep us posted.
 
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