It was in Beirut that the idea for Mashallah News was born. In spring 2010, free-lance journalists Jenny Gustafsson and Isabelle Mayault started discussing an idea for creating a collective online platform covering life in the Arab world, Turkey and Iran.
Frustrated by mainstream media’s biased coverage, they saw a need for reporting on interesting transformations taking place in cities across the region. In April, they contacted Istanbul-based journalist Clément Girardot, Beirut-based activist Micheline Tobia and Geneva-based graphic designer Ismael Abdallah.
Mashallah News was launched in November 2010. The quest to share disOriented stories began.
Next year, Mashallah News has the ambition to launch a multimedia platform, which will be dedicated to web documentaries, longer articles, photographic essays and sound reports. In these exciting times of social revolutions and technical developments, we want to provide opportunities for creators and viewers to write and share in an interactive way.
This new lab for journalistic experiments will use a full array of resources and will combine different forms of storytelling: from live reporting on Twitter to interactive maps and simultaneous investigations in different cities.
Our team of journalists, photographers and multimedia reporters will work in collaboration with specialists from fields such as urban planning, sociology, art and human rights, enabling MashaLAB to become a strong base for quality journalism and innovative storytelling in the region.
What We Need & What You Get
In order to make the MashaLAB project sustainable, we need funds to: hire a technical team to build the new multimedia platform; afford an office space; and encourage talented collaborators to join us and work full-time in our team. Any donation will be crucial to enable us to realize this innovative project.
To this day, all Mashallah News contributors have been working on a voluntary basis simply because they believe in the idea sustaining the project. Thanks to them, and to occasional private donations (fundraising parties and local networks), we have been able to remain online for a year now, and to increase the number of cities we cover, as well as our team of contributors.
We want to evoke new ways of thinking, share original and less-told stories, spread the work of artists and creators from the region, make a mark in society, create cross-border networks, contribute to the changing world of reporting, be an independent and critical voice, give space to innovative and creative citizen initiatives.