Secret Dubai diary Intrigue and adventure in the United Arab Emirates





iPhone RPGs

Dubai Info

Best role-playing games
Spiderweb Software
for Mac & PC





19 December, 2005

"Vibrant nightlife"

7Days comes up with a stand-out euphemism in a story about the closure of several hotel bars in Dubai:

"Staff at the York International confirmed the raid. “There was some license problem for the pub and the bar. This is why the Municipality conducted the raid but it will be sorted out soon,” said one staff member.

"The manager of the Rush Inn Hotel declined to comment on the order. A spokesman for the Imperial Suites hotel denied reports it had also been raided. All the hotels are well known for their vibrant nightlife."


All Dubaians know what the York is famous for, and it ain't Grand Old Dukes. Seedy old dukes maybe.

Meanwhile the ever ill-written Khaleej Times is fretting about vice-ridden cafes, without bothering to titillate their readers with a single juicy detail of these evil places:

"These smoke-filled basement cafes are also places for illegal activities. We urge the authorities to conduct strict inspection of such premises, and ensure that there are no violations, even if it calls for major modifications."

Labels: ,

60 Comments:

Blogger The Lady said...

Rush Inn...York...Imperial Suites - I see a connection, but I just can't put my finger on it (mostly out of choice).

Where will all the lecherous old men go for their daily dose of...er...vibrant nightlife?

On a similar note, anyone catch the cage dancers at a certain roaring nightclub whose name rhymes with...urm...eulogy?

Just my two cents.

19 December, 2005 01:55  
Blogger Tim Newman said...

Let's hope the band in the York quickly find another venue. They were great!

And am I the only one who really doesn't see the point in closing these bars? The women will simply go somewhere else. It solves nothing.

19 December, 2005 08:56  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

SD, once again you miss the point with your - albeit understandable - criticism of KT grammar. yes, they can't write, but at least they pick up their pens. you wouldn't see the good news touching a story about "vice-ridden cafes". also 7days covered the york story, but they pulled their punches by avoiding the p word. if you're gonna show off your balls, make sure you've got two of them first

19 December, 2005 09:12  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

campaign magazine slated KT big time in their latest mag. it's so funny.

sd, why do you hate kt so much. we know it is so bad. did they do something to you. are you bitter. we know that you are better than all this. dont let it get to you.

19 December, 2005 09:27  
Blogger snow white said...

Better that women of negotiable affection are places like the York, than prowling the streets of Bur Dubai (in my opinion).

If they are moving into cafe society, does that mean they get a shot of cream with their coffee?

19 December, 2005 09:29  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Unrelated but funny story...A friend of mine just had some visitors in town from Kuwait who kept begging him to take them to the "Skeleton." The day before they left, he realised they meant "Cyclone." Bless.

19 December, 2005 10:53  
Anonymous balushi said...

There are still a lot of prostitutes here in Dubai.... all over!

but the problem is that we cant call them protitutes!

Can anyone call the Lebenses female singers whorees! No nobody does that.

I was in marina mall in Auh and I saw a group of awesome chicks they looked liek east europeans! I was waiting in the car parking to go and say hello to them!

But i went there A NISSAN PATROL TINTED WITH A SPECIAL NUMBER PLATE STOPPED IN FRONT of them and all these chick started entering inside the Car with their loads of Shooping!

I jew fell on the Floooor!

19 December, 2005 11:18  
Anonymous balushi said...

"But i went there A NISSAN PATROL TINTED WITH A SPECIAL NUMBER PLATE STOPPED IN FRONT of them and all these chick started entering inside the Car with their loads of Shooping!

I jew fell on the Floooor! "


I meant , Before I WENT THERE.

19 December, 2005 11:20  
Blogger John B. Chilton said...

Cause and effect?

quote\\
"I can't believe it," exclaimed a journalist colleague of mine this month.

"I've just been propositioned outside my hotel!"

Simon had checked in and gone for a stroll when a Russian lady invited herself to accompany him back to his room.

He declined, or so he claims, but prostitution is certainly big business here, aided and abetted by the latest technology.

Sitting in a cafe in one of the countless air-conditioned shopping malls, it is not unusual to see ladies of negotiable virtue netting their clients by Bluetooth.

This wireless device allows any interested parties within range to send her a message from their mobile phone without even knowing her phone number.
//unquote
Source:
BBC NEWS: Dubai defies the pessimists

19 December, 2005 12:24  
Blogger Dengrous Boy said...

i am make bluettooth

19 December, 2005 13:05  
Anonymous Cap'n Luke said...

anon @ 9.27

I did make the same observation about SD's obvious dislike of KT.

Our dear SD is most likely a journalist (or at least in the media industry), and it's quite likely she had a run in with KT.

But nevertheless, it is her blog and I guess se can diss whoever she damn well wants to.

19 December, 2005 13:33  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Speaking on behalf of a small band of rebel journalists working for Khaleej Times, it feels like we are working for Willy Wonka.
We will always persevere to produce good copy, and although we are fighting a losing battle, the struggle goes on.

19 December, 2005 14:10  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Take it from somone who once worked from the Kretin Times...forget juicy details...they couldn't even spell those words with a dictionary open to the right page..

19 December, 2005 14:23  
Blogger John B. Chilton said...

Snow White - Mae West is quoted as saying, "I used to be Snow White, but then I drifted."

19 December, 2005 14:24  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

PS: The previous blog and this have come from a rebel journalist also

19 December, 2005 14:25  
Blogger secretdubai said...

SD, once again you miss the point with your - albeit understandable - criticism of KT grammar. yes, they can't write, but at least they pick up their pens.

Speaking on behalf of a small band of rebel journalists working for Khaleej Times, it feels like we are working for Willy Wonka.
We will always persevere to produce good copy, and although we are fighting a losing battle, the struggle goes on.


I do recognise both these points. The KT actually - at least in recent months - has had far more juicy local stories than all the other papers. But it too often buries them with bizarre, torturous writing and structure and strange "moralising" efforts that are completely out of place in news reporting. (Opinion columns, fine).

I also know a few good people at the KT - rebel journo@14:10 - maybe you're even one of the ones I've met? I also know the good are desperately trying to drag up the less-able. Several sources have told me that a critical part of the problem is with the subbing (which is fairly apparent - the worst part of most articles is the intro lines) - it must be hellish to turn out good copy on a juicy story, and have it mangled.

However I don't think it is a losing battle. With the KT now really in a minority with its inexplicably odd style, with so many more newspapers emerging, it won't be able to maintain its current editorial standards: they will inevitably be raised. I also think the more criticism that gets to their ears, the more they may become aware of the problem.

I used to mistakenly think this was an East v West issue. It's not, except for instances of idiom and phrasing, which should be weeded out to a more international style.

The main problem is incompetence and ignorance (and possibly arrogance) - that may be slightly particular to this region in that untrained writers can easily get jobs here, far less so elsewhere. But look at any of the English-language papers in India, for example, and the main ones have plenty of clearly written, well structured stories. As far as I understand it from Arab speaking associates, the local Arabic papers are also competently written (do correct this if I'm wrong).

So the KT is a lone and sinking ship, but land may be on the horizon.

19 December, 2005 14:37  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

About time someone pushed the cork into the hole of the york.

I hope more such raids are conducted in Imperial Suites, Astoria Hotel and the notorious Cyclone apart from other seedy places in Deira. Let the hookers operate from their houses, if they are that desperate and have nowhere else to go to turn tricks.

The bars, discos and pubs should remain open for whoever wants to use them for what they were meant to be, not as a pick up joint for whores!

19 December, 2005 14:49  
Blogger secretdubai said...

it's quite likely she had a run in with KT

No, no run in ever (yet!) Nor do I work for any of its rivals.

I just find it an insult to the media profession that so many incompetent people are employed there. And this irritates me, quite impartially, on a daily basis.

Incidentally, there are a lot of things I haven't ranted about because I do have a personal connection or association with them, and also a lot of things I haven't praised for the same reasons. Because to do so without disclosure would be hypocrisy. And for reasons of anonymity, full disclosure is not possible.

19 December, 2005 15:00  
Anonymous mohamed Elzubeir said...

I think SD and others are missing an important point. No one cares. The consumers don't care. You really think that the majority of the readers of KT actually sit there analyzing and correcting grammar mistakes? Not a chance in hell. The truth of the matter is, most people in this region couldn't put together a full sentence. The complaints are often, and as expected, originating from those in the industry itself.

This hypothesis can only be proven true of false once auditing takes place -- which, optimistically, will take a few years before it actually happens. Once again, the consumers don't care about audits.

It isn't that we only have incompetent journalists and unclear laws about what you can and cannot do/say.. the problem is that the consumers/readers/etc. are ignorant and incompetent themselves.

19 December, 2005 15:48  
Blogger CG said...

I know of a number of people who have the Krapine Times delivered to their door everyday. Why, you might ask. The answer is that they are cheaper (yearly subscriptions), they deliver earlier than any other (depending on your location). They don't care how the news is written, as long as they get the basic idea of what has been going on while they slept in their beds. These are the same people who don't care one bit about idle gossip.

19 December, 2005 16:26  
Anonymous Cap'n Luke said...

SD

actually i was about to take that comment of you having a run in with KT back. come to think of it you are a little too sophisticated to be having run ins with KT. In all likelihood, as you have confirmed, you simply detest bad quality in your industry.

Keep on bloggin'

19 December, 2005 18:06  
Blogger snow white said...

KT renegade journos - keep up the fight!

19 December, 2005 19:30  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

thank you snow white. the rebel forces are gathering and it's just a matter of time. things will get better and kt will rock ... again.
rebel journo

19 December, 2005 20:03  
Anonymous balushi said...

http://www.cpj.org/news/2005/UAE17june05na.html

19 December, 2005 20:47  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

hey SD what juicy kt stories are you talkin' about? take a look at page one of kt - it's absolute tosh. you have entertainment and gossip as lead stories. and as for the rest the less said the better. the only rag worth reading is their tabloid - at least there's some effort being taken to make news exciting there.

19 December, 2005 20:58  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I lend my support to the rebel journalists at KT. Yes, I admit that KT as a broadsheet is complete trash, but their tabloid offering — City Times makes a good read. Better than Good News, and at times even better than the free sheet.

19 December, 2005 21:21  
Blogger qadi said...

Haha, I still remember a story my friend Omer told me about these places.
He went to one of these clubs with a deprived friend, and his friend decided to patronize one of the ladies.

During the session, the lady exhorted him to "hurry up!"

Not only is prostitution nasty(sloppy n-th's) but also apparently utterly emasculating. It must be either really hard to get laid or these guys are totally lame.

20 December, 2005 00:49  
Blogger John B. Chilton said...

Oneworld Multimedia :: Documentary Film Highlights Trafficking of Children From Armenia :: December :: 2005 - "as international concern regarding the trafficking of women and children from Armenia increases, there is still significant work that needs to be undertaken in order to address a problem that has reached alarming proportions. Although it is believed that approximately 1,000 women and children have been trafficked from Armenia to the UAE and Turkey, a recent investigation by local journalists put the number of victims closer to 2,000 in Dubai alone."

20 December, 2005 01:14  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Isn't the standard of KT's English a class issue? The readership/staff of that paper is generally lower middle class Indians, and do not always have English as their first language. (Gulf News, on the other hand, claim to - and probably do - have a more upmarket clientele.) Staffing all UAE papers with upper class Indians and well-paid Britons would probably improve the level of the language, but would also give the media a much more homogenous perspective on the news they are reporting.

20 December, 2005 02:38  
Blogger secretdubai said...

Isn't the standard of KT's English a class issue? The readership/staff of that paper is generally lower middle class Indians, and do not always have English as their first language.

The problem isn't just the language, it's the complete absense of understanding of story structure, appropriate choice of words, and the difference between impartiality and the writer's opinion. Basic journalism.

Even if KT journalists start out less well-educated and trained, it's not that difficult to train someone with even a modicum of talent to write competently. Clearly there is no knowledge at the higher levels of KT managment about appropriate standards.

20 December, 2005 02:48  
Blogger Rock.the.Casbah said...

Earlier this summer, I was travelling from Dubai to Sofia. After waiting for nine hours in the boarding lounge, the airport forced our airline (Hemus Air) to find us accommodation until they could repair the plane. Not wanting to pay the high rates of the airport hotel, they shuttled us to the Rush Inn. We were kept there for a full day, advised not to leave as the plane could be ready "at any minute."

One of the passengers was diabetic. After a sleepless night at the boarding gate and a morning spent bussed around Dubai, she feel asleep as soon as we arrived at the Rush Inn. She entered into diabetic shock and her roommate left her, thinking she had gone crazy. When someone who recognized her symptoms found her half an hour later, he instructed the desk to call for an ambulance. However, the manager of the Rush Inn came down and said that would be unnecessary and they didn't want to cause a scene at the hotel. The manager insisted that it was completely unnecessary to call the ambulance; he said her seizure was simply “a bad dream." He didn’t want any “bad publicity” for the hotel. He was so opposed to involving any authorities that it wasn't until the other man (a fellow passenger) threatened him physically that he gave in.

If they had waited another 15 minutes she would have died.

20 December, 2005 07:49  
Anonymous balushi said...

i saw in GoodNews today some mans sitting in the park and chatting!


That was the HEADLINE today in Goodnews.

20 December, 2005 09:56  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I quite frankly enjoy and welcome SD's criticism of Khaleej times and other local media. I dont know how others cannot enjoy it and find it funny. Every so often me and my freinds/ colleagues are appalled at the grammer, word usage in KT. But SD brings it out and highlights it for all of us to have fun at the trashy piece of paper - so whats wrong with that?

I can honestly see the local newspapers see competition from blogs like these in the near future for readership.

SD, please carry on you sarcastic dubai soldier!

20 December, 2005 12:03  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

and anyone who has lived here long enough will testify: its not that KT was inherintly poor in its writing, at one time it was quite respectable - given the limitations that are imposed on it. It at least didnt leave a reader gawking at its grammer. This shift has been seen in the recent few years. Anyone remember Bikram Vohra's sarcastic editoria?

20 December, 2005 12:05  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I am all for stopping this rubbish prostitution and weird hangout places. I can get really philosophical about it, but I will just say that there seriously isn't anything ethical about such hangout places! They should be shut, period.

On the issue of Khaleej Times - I have been reading and also contributing to Khaleej Times forr quite a while now, but I do have to admit that ever since I came back to Dubai after a gap of 6 years, KT has become a REAL JOKE! All the typographical and grammatical errors kept aside, have you guys ever noticed the ignoramously pathetic editorials of the editor of Khaleej Times? What World does this guy (A.R. Galadari) live in? His views are always weird and his writing style leaves a lot to be desired. And what's worse is that he has something to say about some event in the World EVERY FRIGGIN' DAY!

But, it's no coincidence that he never ever attempts to write anything about UAE laws and problems in this country. He is just busy saying ludicrous things about international events that would even make Bush look like a genius!

20 December, 2005 14:51  
Blogger secretdubai said...

have you guys ever noticed the ignoramously pathetic editorials of the editor of Khaleej Times?

Only he doesn't write them, they're written for him. Which is even worse. Talk about Dumb and Dumber.

20 December, 2005 14:55  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Journalism in Dubai... well, where do you begin?

For a start we all know what happens when you pay peanuts. And when the newest paper was recruiting there wasn't exactly a fistful of dollars on offer. If people are actually going to lose money by switching to Dubai from say the UK then you are not going to attract the cream of journalism, especially given the great handicaps on telling it like it is in the UAE.

Long hours, under-staffing, pressure-cooker working, coupled with moderate wages, against a background of spiralling living costs, are features of a journalist's life in Dubai. And the willingness of newspapers to employ the untrained and inexperienced for financial reasons inevitably means you get what you pay for.

There are some good journos in Dubai but many of them find themselves having to carry the many sub-standard ones from around the world in getting the paper out. They won't hang around long, given all the above.

The frustrations for a journalist in not being able to do a proper job in informing people of what is actually going on because of the restrictions on the media also hampers the chances of employing and retaining the best.

20 December, 2005 15:59  
Anonymous mohamed Elzubeir said...

You mean an editor's editorial are written by someone else? *gasp*!

Unfortunately this is not even half as uncommon as one would hope. I have been in close contact (former boss even) with someone who I _know_ does not write everything he puts his name to. I also know many instances of supposedly famous, trustworthy consultants who feature on many papers, who don't write a single word from what is published under their name.

I don't really understand the psyche, but it's very very very common.. and from the people and places you would expect it the least.

20 December, 2005 16:30  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

It's normal for a CEO to have his marketing crew prepare articles or statements or speeches. That's what they are hired for. BUT NOT AN EDITOR for God's sake. An editor not writing his own editorial is CRAP and no, it is NOT practiced in the US, at least, by reputable publications. Says a lot about the KT that their own editor can't even write.

20 December, 2005 17:15  
Anonymous mohamed Elzubeir said...

Of course, the CEO of a company.. the president of a nation, etc.. it is very unlikely that any of them actually write their own speeches, etc.

However, they sure don't publish books and claim to have written them when they haven't. A financial analyst doesn't submit a deep analysis of a market situation and claim he wrote it when he hasn't. Those are very common realities in the Middle East.

20 December, 2005 19:19  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

You guys are talking trash and SD seems to be clearly biased against KT. Why doesn't she talk about the fact that feature writers at Emirates Today are picking up wire stories and passing it off as their own...have you checked some of the articles dones by the James Reinl chap - some of the stories that he was doing until recently were articles that has appeared on the wire the previous day. Sd, also conviniently forgets to mention the trashy tabloid that comes from Gulf News - it's so boring that even if I was stranded on a deserted island I wouldn't read it if my life depended on it.
Sd also attributes the poor quality of English at KT to 'Indian' writers and I can't understand why she/he/it does not talk about the upper class brits at Emirates Today delivering such poor copy (also stolen).
Double standards, I say.

20 December, 2005 21:38  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

There's no good print shit coming outta this place, so will ya guys shut your traps and do something better with you lives. SD, time for you to find a new vocation...something useful and less irritating

20 December, 2005 21:41  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

SD, we are quite aware of the 'quality' whites in this city and what they are capable of. The Arabs love whites, so even 'white trash' finds a decent living in this country. Back home they would probably be living in shelters for the homeless or surving on dole...here they seem to thrive. They are no good and that's why they are here. And stop being a 'racist' whatever you are. You sound like a KKK person.

20 December, 2005 21:45  
Blogger secretdubai said...

SD seems to be clearly biased against KT.

Yes, because it's shittily written compared to the other papers. My bone of contention is with its style, not its content. I don't give a shit about wire copy being used (assuming the stories are interesting and relevant), just well written copy.

Sd also attributes the poor quality of English at KT to 'Indian' writers

Do I? let's recap on what I actually wrote:

I used to mistakenly think this was an East v West issue. It's not, except for instances of idiom and phrasing, which should be weeded out to a more international style.

The main problem is incompetence and ignorance (and possibly arrogance) - that may be slightly particular to this region in that untrained writers can easily get jobs here, far less so elsewhere. But look at any of the English-language papers in India, for example, and the main ones have plenty of clearly written, well structured stories.


And if you really want my opinion, I find some of the worst articles on there with Arabic bylines.

Anon: you're sadly even more stupid than the KT illiterates I rant about. You have a misplaced chip on your shoulder bigger than the bloody Burj Al Arab. Get a life.

20 December, 2005 21:59  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

This blog report was on VIBRANT NIGHTLIFE..look what it has turned into here in the comments section..vibrant mud slinging at each other with KT in the middle! And I actually thought this post would do wonders to kick out the whores from Dubai..

21 December, 2005 10:17  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

SD, clearly you are someone with a short term memory. Look into your teribly written blogs to say what you actually have and then justify your statements. As for me, I think I have wasted enough time trying to talk some bloody sense into you, but I realise you are nothing more than a opinionated stuck pig. You fart more than you breathe

21 December, 2005 12:39  
Blogger secretdubai said...

Look into your teribly written blogs to say what you actually have [my bold]

???

Oh dear. It's clear where you probably write for. Or should do.

21 December, 2005 13:45  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I reckon there's a TV soap brewing here, set in the cut-throat (and catty) world of newspapers. I'm working on a title and maybe... Paper Tigers... or perhaps Scribal warfare!

Seconds out....

21 December, 2005 18:47  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

SD...me...bad english...teach me to write english...o' all mighty white master/mistress...teach us the civilised ways of your world

21 December, 2005 22:43  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

You must have been a white wet nurse SD...deliver all asians from their ignorant mess

21 December, 2005 22:45  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

My Arab master wants to employ you SD...help him out he needs a white saviour

21 December, 2005 22:47  
Blogger secretdubai said...

Snivelling troll: you're only making a prat out of yourself and your own inferiority complex. If you want to argue my points rationally then do so, but stop playing the martyr and repeating the same mendacious, inflammatory nonsense comment after coment.

And yes I do have your IP, so I know you're just one person. Do get a life, and a bit of dignity for yourself.

21 December, 2005 23:16  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Did anyone see that stupid front page story in KT last week about a calf being born with 3 eyes and a horse's ear in RAK!!!?

I cant believe KT is stooping to such a low tabloid and National Enquirer level.

I wish KT just stops pissing me off every morning!

21 December, 2005 23:38  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Can't deal with a snivelling troll can you? I say, it's still better than being a whingeing dog. Don't you? Say you love KT and I will give up...or maybe you just love arguing with me...my precious

22 December, 2005 13:01  
Blogger samuraisam said...

Troll, give it up, you know KT sucks, and the only reason i can see someone defending it is if they work for them.

22 December, 2005 14:14  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

can't we all get back to the issue of this blog?? the seedy nightlife or lack of it now (?!!??) . will this affect the attendance at the coming 'festival'?

24 December, 2005 15:42  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Anonymous said...
can't we all get back to the issue of this blog??

I agree, lets name some more of these clubs and "underground cafe's"

would like to check them out!

26 December, 2005 17:11  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

SD, i have never posted a comment, but i do read regularly. If you dislike KT so much, why do you read it? I see that the standard of writing in that paper is very poor, that is why i avoid it. 7 days seems like a good selection in the morning, along with the Gulf News. However, if you want international news, just read the Reuters wire. Personally, i get all my juicy comments from the 7 Days opinions page.

Furthermore, i do not think that prostitution in dubai needs to be exposed. Not in a sense that it should be hidden, but in a sense that it is so clear that it need not be highlighted. Yes it is disgusting to visit some of the meat markets in dubai, slowly all the bars/nightclubs are serving that kind of meat. Frankly, i think it is a lot more to do with the thriving market for that taste in this country. The sexually deprived to the lonely businessmen.

The problem of prostitution will not be solved by closing or restructuring nightclubs/bars in Dubai. Nothing will solve this problem. A blind eye is always turned to that kind of stuff in the UAE. I mean, if the police just arrested the regulars at Cyclone then fear might control. The current actions from the offical party are only going to shift the area of business. The business will not stop, there is a reason why it is the oldest proffesion. This is just a publicity act, and ill just sit here laughing.

28 December, 2005 04:07  
Blogger secretdubai said...

If you dislike KT so much, why do you read it?

It has some good stories, but it is so terribly written, and this irks me. I feel it needs to be criticised, because it currently embarrasses the UAE media scene (as well as the handful of competent journalists it has that are let down by dire management, woeful eds and sub-eds and a bunch of hapless colleagues).

28 December, 2005 12:07  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

i dunno y people brag abut d prostitution in dubai because of dis prostitution der r no cases of rapes here check other countries where derz no prostitution lot of rape cases happen people should understand.....

29 August, 2006 01:00  

Post a Comment

<< Home



next issue is no. 12




Google Secret Dubai
iopBlogs.com, The World's Blog Aggregator
 Blog Top Sites

Powered by Blogger




StatCounter stats