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#FeminineArabic, by Carla El Maalouli, Twitter MENA

Eleven brands celebrate the launch of Twitter’s new language setting with #FeminineArabic (أتحدث_بالمؤنث#)

By Carla El Maalouli, head of business marketing, Twitter MENA

Language setting on Twitter.com acknowledges and better supports the Arabic feminine form

When is this option going to be available and why did Twitter decide to support this initiative at this moment of time?

The new Arabic language setting is rolling out across the service from June 15th, 2021. For those who opt in, ‘Arabic (feminine)’ will address and acknowledge people in the feminine form.

As a company, Twitter is continuously exploring new ideas and projects to ensure the platform is representative of the diverse voices that shape the conversation. The “Arabic (Feminine)” language setting is a continuation of our work around inclusive language, which began with the development of a glossary of inclusive terminology and upgrade of the outdated language in existing code to be more inclusive. 

What has been the initial response from Twitter’s partners and brands?

Together with the launch, a campaign titled #FeminineArabic (أتحدث_بالمؤنث#) has been rolled out to share our approach and partner with others in the industry to do so. We have seen great support from the industry and have partnered with a number of brands who joined the conversation.

stc pay (@stcpay_ksa) addressed its female audiences directly celebrating the launch through female-focused visuals and language.

 

adidas MENA (@adidasMENA)  joined the conversation using #FeminineArabic to strengthen its message of inclusivity for women.

Mastercard Middle East & Africa (@MastercardMEA) produced a video showcasing Arabic words in the feminine form, highlighting the goal of both genders in supporting one another to build a more inclusive society.

Zain Saudi Arabia (@ZainKSA) is supporting the campaign by changing its Twitter header photo and driving conversations with its female audiences throughout the launch day.

Samsung Saudi Arabia (@SamsungSAUDI) pledged to use #FeminineArabic when addressing their female audiences in the country, inviting its regional counterparts to do the same.

Nissan Saudi Arabia (@NissanSaudi) highlighted the determination and relentlessness of the Saudi female spirit, joining the conversation with a visual of female drivers.

Across the region, Microsoft’s Twitter handles amplified the launch of #FeminineArabic across its own audiences, from Microsoft UAE (@MicrosoftUAE) to Microsoft Egypt (@MicrosoftEgypt), and Microsoft Saudi (@Microsoft_Saudi) and Microsoft Qatar (@MicrosoftQatar), in addition to Xbox Gulf (@XboxGulf), and Xbox Saudi (@Xbox_Saudi), engaging in a discussion supporting the update.

Visit Abu Dhabi (@VisitAbuDhabiAR) celebrated women across the emirate, addressing them in #FeminineArabic and inviting them to share their favourite memories of Abu Dhabi.

Puck Arabia (@puckarabia) celebrated the campaign by reworking its tagline in a video, which historically featured a masculine word (شيف), to address its female audience.

Mobily (@Mobily) joined the conversation by addressing its female audiences using the feminine form throughout launch day.

Galaxy Arabia (@ArabiaGalaxy) Tweeted a newly launched video using #FeminineArabic and #IChoosePleasure, which empowers women to pursue their own choices.

How will your partnerships with brands work on this moving forward?

Twitter works in partnership with brands to create impactful campaigns. Advertisers come to Twitter because we have the most valuable audience when they are most receptive, and we generate a high return on investment against their campaign objectives. This change allows brands to talk to consumers in a more tailored and inclusive way on our service, reflecting our own diversity values, while providing women with an opportunity to share their unique voice and participate in conversations inclusively.

Do you believe initiatives like this one will bring a real change towards female empowerment in the Middle East?

We believe that real change starts with a conversation. As an open service, our purpose at Twitter is to serve that public conversation. Through our #FeminineArabic campaign, we are partnering with brands, NGO’s such as @UNWomenArabic and government entities such as The UAE Ministry of Culture and Youth (@UAEMC) to amplify the conversation around women empowerment and create lasting impact.

Is this feature available only for the Arabic language? In other languages like Spanish and French, there is a similar use of the language. Will Twitter bring this option for languages like those as well?

Arabic is a key language on the service globally, and over the past few years we have enhanced our products to ensure we are catering to our audience, launching features like Arabic Moments, that showcase curated Tweets under the Explore section, to Arabic Topics that people can follow to discover interesting conversations, and adding descriptions to Arabic trends to give context. As with all our product updates, we will continue to iterate on this work and share updates when available.

Aramex has already done this with their website. Do you know of others, and do you see more companies offering this in the future? Are you part of a movement?

We applaud all initiatives that celebrate inclusivity. Our focus remains on developing and shaping Twitter to best serve our audience and the wider industry. We want to create lasting change in the industry, giving brands the tools to adopt inclusive language, while highlighting the importance of connecting with our audiences.

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