Back from Eid – a little update on what’s new

I’m back from Eid after spending some time with a friend in London! I hope you’ve all had a great time too. I’ve been bad at keeping my blog up to date, but I’ve got a good reason! I’ve been working hard on partnerships with some great companies, creating loads of QTips with the team (thanks for all the support and helping us get loads of viewership by the way!), and we’re working on new shows, new series like our Top 10 lists on the website, working on the mobile version of ILQ and some amazing apps.

So yes I’ve got an excuse :)

We’re always looking for more people to join the ILQ team though, so if you’re enthusiastic, passionate, and want to make the world a better place, then let me know. We’ve supported LOADS of charitable causes since we started. We’re so proud that we’re a website that spends profit we get to help the community. That was always the goal. To create a great ecosystem where the community helped itself through our portal.

Thanks to the interns and volunteers that spend time with us, we managed to grow into a fantastic network that’s much bigger than just ILQ itself.

Having said that, bare with me and I hope we’ll be able to share some cool new stuff with you soon.

I’m away by the way (in Japan) and Jame’s Blunt is coming to Qatar

I guess I should have posted this a while ago but I’m currently away for a bit of a vacation. Chilaxing in Japan at the moment. So far I’ve been to Osaka’s Universal Studios for the New Year count down, Gifu for snowboarding and now I’m hanging out in Nagoya. In a few days I’m going to be heading off to Tokyo!

I’ve decided to try out Vlogging and hopefully you’ll like it! If you do, I’ll keep going! Oh and don’t forget to visit the ILQ YouTube channel as well as Facebook page. The team and I have added some great stuff!

Oh! Almost forgot, yes the rumors are true the Intercontinental, Alive and ILQ are partnering up to bring over James Blunt on February!
There’s loads more to share but I need to cut it short!

Ma3asalama!

We’re getting there!

So Dine Out Doha has been getting off to a great start and the reviews and comments are starting to come in! Exciting stuff!

If you haven’t been yet, click here for Dine Out Doha. Be sure to start rating, commenting, posting micro-reviews or even submitting your full fledged restaurant reviews too!

Now you’ll remember we launched what we called the Beta of I Love Qatar at http://beta.iloveqatar.net (it’s actually an alpha). We did something special which was taking the link live even though it was still being built! We did that so that people could watch the site come together! Now the great news is that we should be around 2 and half weeks away from completion!

What’s even more exciting is that we’re going to revealing the awesome new MyLife function as well as the new ILQ Originals which will host a great amount of original content too! We’ve got some great Qatari comics, Online videos, skits, and some stuff that’s under wraps for the moment too.

In the mean while, you can go ahead and sign in (or sign up) in the beta section of ILQ and play around by posting events in the new event section or even start posting in the new forums.

(Don’t worry, you won’t lose anything once we remove the ‘beta’ tag from it).

Anyway! That’s my update!

Please support ILQ :)

Hey there all! I just thought I’d let people know of the many ways people can support ILQ!

1) Clicking on ads! Yep, the easiest way is to just click on banners! ILQ relies on sponsors, so if you click on banners then that helps us not only maintain the site but also generate funds to sponsor more events!

2) Spreading the word. Let people know about the fantastic community that iLoveQatar.net is.
People can make friends here, find answers on the forums, check out the classifieds, find out the latest events in Qatar, read up on Qatar related news, join one of the largest friend networks there is (Qfriends) and read up on a great guide!

3) Adding ILQ buttons in your signature! Create a button and add it onto your signature or blog! We’ve also made some buttons for you to use here http://www.iloveqatar.net/linkus.php

4) Share your articles and opinions. Why not write and share articles on ILQ’s forums. We’ll be launching a dedicated section out of the forums but until then, you can write reviews or even share some funny stories!

5) Link exchange. If you’ve got a site, ILQ would love to know about it. We don’t mind people linking to their sites on the forums (as long as they either link back or participate on ILQ).

6) Volunteering! We participate and sponsor loads of events in Qatar. It could be something charitable (like a red crescent event or doing something nice for the labourers) OR something more entertaining (like helping out at the David Guetta or Akon events). Yep not only are you helping out the community but you’re also

7) Updating the guide! If you spot something that isn’t right or something that should be added. Let us know! Drop us a line at contact@iloveqatar.net and we’ll get the guide updated.

8) Install the alexa toolbar from (http://www.alexa.com) and then set ILQ as your homepage. [www.iloveqatar.net]

Do you prefer setting google as your homepage? Here’s an ILQ version! http://www.iloveqatar.net/search

Want to set google as your homepage AND help the environment? Then set http://www.iloveqatar.net/search/black.html as your homepage.

Read this article http://blog.iloveqatar.net/2009/11/energy-efficient-google/ for how you’re helping the environment!

I’m sure you guys can come up with other ways of helping out! Whether it be partnering, sticking stickers around, or just helping out on the forums or our facebook group (which as of today has over 8,400 members!)

Oh! Don’t forget to ‘Like’ ILQ’s Fan page http://www.facebook.com/iloveqtr and Join the ILQ Facebook group! http://www.facebook.com/khalifas?v=wall&story_fbid=158935400797225&po=1#!/group.php?gid=36900681716

Update to ILQ and Newsletter!

Although I’m ill with a cold. I figured I’d be a bit more productive than just laying around watching tv. Tomorrow is the ILQ team meet-up so I figured I’d at least have a nice web update to share.

You can now view the spotlighted events on the front page. Besides the list of events, we’ll be highlighting major events or events that are special to ILQ.

We’ve also gone ahead and added a newsletter sign up box to the left of the site! (I’ll be adding one to the right on blog).

Want to sign up? Just click on this link and it’ll take you to the sign up page.  It’s called The Buzz http://eepurl.com/-WUE

Don’t worry, you won’t get spammed and we will never share your email address with anyone. You’ll get a monthly digest from ILQ that lists events that are coming up, note worthy blog and forum posts and maybe a few vouchers or offers here and there!

Hukoomi (Qatar eGovernment) has a new layout

This was a bit of surprise. Hukoomi now has a new layout and design. Feels more blog like. I kind of miss the older design.
(For those that don’t know what it is, it’s a page for people to renew visas, pay traffic violations, renew documents etc..)

What say you?

Visit Hukoomi at www.hukoomi.com

Blog update

With all the updates going on at ILQ, I thought it was about time we tweaked the blog a bit.

On the right hand side, you’ll now notice a few changes. 1) There’s a tag cloud so you can find the most common tagged terms, there’s my twitter feed, and there’s the Qatar Events twitter feed.

For those who don’t know there are a few great ILQ powered Twitter channels.

QatarEvents – http://www.twitter.com/qatarevents

It’s updated with the latest events and happenings in Qatar.

QatarNews – http://www.twitter.com/qatarnews

Grab important news from a variety of sources related to Qatar.

Freedom of Expression

    Article 19 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights which the Qatari Government is a signatory of states: Everyone has the right to freedom of opinion and expression; this right includes freedom to hold opinions without interference and to seek, receive and impart information and ideas through any medias and regardless of any frontiers.

    The Emiri Decision Number 86 of the year 2007 on the establishment of the Doha Free Information Centre marked yet another step towards establishing a State of rights and freedom of speech. The decision stipulated that the Centre be a non-profit organization, headquartered in Doha City, and have the authority to establish other affiliated centres inside and outside Qatar. It is worth mentioning that His Highness the Emir issued a decision in 1998 annulling the ministry of information, giving birth to a new era of freedom of speech where censorship was removed from local media.