Fictional ‘Gay Girl in Damascus’ blog disappears

July 18, 2011

The ‘Gay Girl in Damascus’ blog, which was believed to have provided an authentic voice documenting the Syrian chapter of the Arab Spring, has "vanished".

The author of the blog, Tom MacMaster, apparently decided to delete the contents of the blog after it reached more than a million "separate views".

The blog had claimed to offer a truthful account of the protests against Bashar al-Assad’s regime from the perspective of a woman in Syria called ‘Amina Arraf’.

She gave several interviews to journalists by email and the blog was featured in various media outlets including The Guardian, CBS News and CNN. 

In June, the blog received even more attention when Tom MacMaster, an American postgraduate student at Edinburgh University, was unmasked as the author of the blog.

He admitted that Amina Arraf was merely a fictional character he had created in an attempt to provide "an important voice for issues" he felt "strongly about".

MacMaster subsequently apologised to readers admitting that he might have "potentially compromised the safety of real people" and "helped lend credence to the lies of the regimes".