Facebook launched in Arabic

March 11th, 2009 - 4:23 pm ICT by ANI  

London, Mar 11 (ANI): Social networking site Facebook has launched in Arabic, the company has announced.

Capturing a potentially huge market in the Middle East and beyond, Facebook, based in Palo Alto, California, already has large numbers of users in the Arab world, and the ability to use it in Arabic is likely to make it even more popular.

Arabic and Hebrew will now be available from a drop-down menu at the bottom of the homepage.

“It’’s the first time Arabic speakers will be able to use Facebook in their own language,” The Guardian quoted Ghassan Haddad, the Facebook director of localisation, as saying.

“It’’s potentially huge, Haddad added.

Facebook said 850 Arabic speakers and 870 Hebrew speakers had helped with the project.

The sites developers built a mechanism to detect the gender of the user and select the translation that matches it and used Modern Standard Arabic, which is used in the media and other formal and religious circles. (ANI)

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