A Temecula group has launched a Muslim version of YouTube.
MuslimChannels.tv aims to educate non-Muslims about Islam and provide an Internet site for Muslims to view videos without worrying about anti-Islamic tirades or sexually explicit content, said Tarek Ayoub, a volunteer for the site and for the site's nonprofit founder, Islam The Answer Corp.
"It's a way for Muslim users to feel safe," Ayoub said.
The site also includes non-religious programming, such as comedy, travel, sports and cultural videos, along with documentaries containing trenchant political commentary on subjects such as the Israeli occupation of the Palestinian territories. The volunteer-run site will not accept advertising or donations, to avoid compromising its mission, Ayoub said.
Larry Slusser, secretary of the Southwest Riverside County Interfaith Council and a Mormon, praised the idea behind the site.
"I think it's great anytime someone can dispel misconceptions and promote understanding of and appreciation for a faith," said Slusser, who has not visited the site. "As a Latter-day Saint, I know many people have misperceptions about my faith. There's enough hatred in the world. We need more understanding of our differences."
Hussam Ayloush, executive director of the Southern California office of the Council on American-Islamic Relations, said MuslimChannels.tv's nonreligious videos show how Muslims are culturally and ethnically diverse and cannot be defined solely by their religion. (MORE)