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'Blocked' Doha News website scales back on content

Doha News co-founder has said the news website is scaling back its operations for now as it tries to resolve issues with authorities over access to the website in the country.

The website is still open to traffic outside of Qatar, but remains blocked internally.

In a message on the website, Doha News co-founder Omar Chatriwala said there are possible issues with the website’s licensing that may have led to the popular news portal being blocked.

“We’ve since come to understand that this was an intentional act, in part due to issues with our licensing,” said Chatriwala.

“We’re continuing to speak to officials this week to see how we can resolve the problem.”

He said blocking the website over licensing concerns was a “clear act of censorship, and a fairly unprecedented one in Qatar”.

Doha News will reduce the number of articles it produces, he said, in an effort to ‘protect’ the website’s team.

The website was blocked by simultaneously both of Qatar’s internet service providers, Ooredoo and Vodafone on November 30.

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