For several years, earlier times before the Moroccan independence, the only way of stating or expressing an opinion was through the media and the press, and the press was a powerful tool to deliver an idea or express an opinion about a certain issue, although after the independence the Moroccan government claim that the people enjoy freedom of opinion; but paradoxically many people were jailed or sometimes worst for expressing their revolutionary beliefs or opinions about the king along the years, but though journalism or the press in general or even the media are not the only way to share an opinion and now with the internet comes wider horizons of opinions to see and millions of people to interact with and are available for almost everyone.
It is remarkable that most political and social issues that Morocco is suffering, goes back to the independence in 1956, and the freedom of opinion and the press is not an exception, since after the independence, it was very important to discontinue any type of rebellion from the people and to create a consecrated image for the monarch (In This Case: The King), so by limiting the ways of media and the means of opinions there are less chances of opinions shared by the public to the public and therefore less chances of awareness, although some journalists have practiced their freedom of opinion by sharing their revolutionary beliefs, but they were all prisoned, per example Ali Lemrabet was a famous Moroccan journalist and after he published an article where he suggested the possibility of the royal palace of Skhirat being for sale he was sentenced four months of prison and a fine of 3000 €.
There is also the case of Rachid Nini who was a columnist for Al Massae, famous for his pole “Chouf Tchouf” (In English: a Moroccan Expression for: and you may never know) but after a rebellious article, the column was obliterated and Rachid Nini was convicted with one year in prison, which the absolute opposite case in other broad countries such as the United States or the Czech Republic, since in other countries journalist and almost everyone enjoy the freedom of opinion, but not absolute but the freedom of opinion or stating in Morocco is not only limited to the traditional ways like the media or books or art, but also to the protest now after the “Arab Spring” revolution, many people were injured during some protests while others are killed like the case of Oussama Lakhlifi and the media didn’t cover this update.
Although internet as a platform for expressing seems very tempting and sharing an opinion online has chances of reaching the right people but also to the wrong ones and it could resolve much bad results. There are many Moroccan bloggers who were prisoned, for instance there is Mohamed Sokrat, and also Kacem el Ghazali who was forced to leave the country after publicly claiming his atheism, but the crisis of freedom of opinion is not only a Moroccan matter but it is worldwide, the only different is ‘The Standards’, in Arab countries the standards for the freedom of opinion are very limited due to the famous consecrates that are generally: Religion and The King(or in some countries the president) there have been in some countries in the past where the government was consecrated too but it isn’t the case now in the modern day, there for instance Julian Assange, the founder and editor-in-chief of the website Wikileaks, who is now wanted for trial in various countries especially in the United States due to his publishing of secret government documents in many countries and some of his resources like Bradley Manning who was in the army and is now prisoned for “Whistle blowing” which is a term meaning: sending or delivering high secret government information to the public.
Although the standards are different, but the problem stays the same, there is no country where the people in general enjoy the absolute freedom of opinion, there are limits, and these limits seem to be different from one country to another, one culture to another.