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Spreading rumours on social media is ‘haram’ — Iftaa Department

By Maram Kayed - Aug 08,2018 - Last updated at Aug 08,2018

AMMAN — The Iftaa Department on Wednesday issued a fatwa, classifying “misuses” of social media as “prohibited by Sharia and totally rejected by the people of sound mind and nature”.

The department said its fatwa came in response to question about the Sharia ruling with regard to people circulating rumours on social media networks.  

Acknowledging the positive role of social media as “facilitating communication amongst people and making their life easier”, the Iftaa Department ruled that  misuse of social media networks “leads to corruption, spreading rumours, slandering, impugning people`s honour, committing sins and publishing scandal broadcast”.

Hassan Abu Arqoub, the department’s director of PR and international cooperation, told The Jordan Times, “the fatwa comes in light of the fact that in the last two months, the number of rumours that are circulating around the Kingdom have increased”.

“What we define as a rumour is simply any piece of information that is untrue. It is not to be confused with freedom of speech within legal limitations, as that is a fundamental human right.”

Comments on social media have been mostly aggressive regarding the Fatwa, with most people commenting that the department should give priority to other pressing issues such as taxes, nepotism and low income when issuing Fatwas.

Taha Al Maharmeh, a Jordanian citizen living in Saudi Arabia, commented on his Facebook page: “Of course it’s haram. But what about corruption? Is that halal or haram? We do not trust you anymore.”

Another citizen, Suradi Yousef, wrote: “True, True, True. So is hiding vital information. So is insensible taxation. So is staying silent when treated unfairly.”

Abu Arqoub told The Jordan Times that they frequently deal with backlashes, but “enforcement of God’s law and the security and stability of the nation” are their two top priorities and not the reaction that they may get when dealing with such matters.

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THIS TYPE OF DEBATE IS UN-JORDANIAN AND CLEALY A DEVIATION OF THE JORDANIAN STANDARD OF ETHICS AND MORALITY. ONE NEVER HEARS THIS TYPE OF DEBATE ABOUT JORDAN SO IS THIS A STEEP FOWARD OR BACKWORDS. WHILE I AM NOT A FAN OF GOING ON LINE FOR GOSSIPS AND / OR ANY RUMORS, I WILL ALWAYS RESPOND TO ANY OFFICIAL NEWS PRINT AND/OR OFFICIAL NEWS REPORT. JORDAN IS A VERY MODERN COUNTRY WHERE TRUTH AND HONESTY RULES BUT I THINK THAT THE SYSTEM IS DRIFTING INTO AN UN-CHARTED TERRITORY THAT MAY TANISH THE IMAGE OF A COUNTRY THAT WE ALL LOVE. WHAT HAS TRIGERED THIS FATWA? IS THIS SECONDARY TO THE CURRENT EVENTS AND DIPLOMATIC PROXY WARS. AS LONG AS WE ARE ALL HUMAN AND HAVE CHILDREN, THEY ARE ALL BOUND TO DO THEIR THINGS ON THE LINE. IS THIS WHAT WE CALL HARAM? IF SO WHAT ABOUT SMOKING TOBACCO, HAVING CONCUBINES AND MISSTRESSES, BRIBERY AND CORRUPTIONS, DOUBLE TONGUE DIPLOMACY
AND TALKING ABOUT THE OPPRESSED PEOPLE LIKE IN WEST BANK AND GAZA?. JORDAN SHOULD BE JORDAN AND AVOID SOME OF THESE TANGENCIAL ISSUES. THE MORE WE DRIFT INTO THESE SIDE SHOWS, THE MORE PEOPLE SAYS " SEE, I TOLD YOU SO ".
ANY THING THAT IS NOT BROKEN, IT WILL BE WORK DONE AGAINST FRICTION TO FIX IT. FOR ONE THING, THE SOCIAL MEDIA WE ARE TALKING ABOUT IS JUST WHAT ANY GOVERNMENT WILL WANT TO USE TO MEASURE THE PULSE OF THEIR CITIZENS WHICH SURELY CAN BECOME AN IMPORTANT TOOL IN DEVELOPING PUBLIC POLICY. ALL GOVERNMENTS FROM AMERICA TO AMMAN SHOULD DO A BETTER JOB THROUGH THEIR INFORMATION MINISTRY TO INFORM AND EDUCATE THEIR CITIZENS RATHER THAN IMPOSING GAG ORDERS TO SILENCE THEM. THIS IS THE YEAR 2018 AND NOT THE YEAR 1820.

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