Famous Social Media Influencers share insights at SIBF 2015November 01, 2015

02nd Nov

Social media influencers will be presenting their experience and how they use social networking sites to express issues and promote their products at the Sharjah International Book Fair 2015 (SIBF) taking place from November 4-14 at the Sharjah Expo Centre.

Kicking off at the Social Media Station on 4 November at 7 pm is Ben Okri, author of “The Famished Road”, which won the Booker Prize, and “The Age of Magic”, which was his first novel for seven years. His work has been translated into 26 languages and won numerous international prizes including the Commonwealth Writer’s Prize for Africa and the Paris Review Aga Khan Prize for Fiction. Okri will be discussing how he promoted his works over Social Media.

Nuha Nabeel and Mohammad Otaiba take to the station on 5 November at 6.30 and 7.30 pm respectively. Nuha is a media personality based in Kuwait and a chemical engineer graduate from Kuwait University.  She started presenting on TV at nine years-old and has participated in various cultural and poetry events. She is considered to be one of most popular social media influencers in regards to fashion and beauty and her session is called “Social Media and Fashion”. Mohammed Otaiba is the Editor-in-Chief of The National newspaper in the UAE before which he was at Image Nation Abu Dhabi where he oversaw the development of talent and film in the UAE. Mohammed will present a session called “Storytelling in newspapers”.

On November 6 at 6.30 pm Shaikha Al Ali  and Chef Khulood Atiq will hold a session called “Share the Experience”. Shaikha  who has a blog called “When Shaikha Cooks” is passionate about food culture specifically in the Arabian Peninsula and Middle East, and providing it in a visual form for her audience. Being a member of the Food Art magazine "Thooq" has helped these efforts as her recipes, cultural topics, and hidden foods are now being shared in print. While Khulood Atiq is the UAE’s first female national chef and innovator of Emirati cuisine. With years of personal experience and research, Chef Atiq has worked with some of Abu Dhabi’s finest hospitality outlets including the stunning Qasr Al Sarab in the Liwa Desert, on an Emirati cuisine cookbook, which she hopes will help raise international awareness of this highly-traditional type of food.

Darin Al Bayed is also appearing on 6 November at 7.30 in a session called “Why so Serious?”. Al Bayedh is the presenter of “I and She” on You Tube and the main character in the Saudi drama serial "Tekki", and will highlight her experience in acting and social media.

On Saturday 7 November Sami Yousif, recognized by the Guardian as the biggest British star in the Middle East with 34 Million albums sold to date, will take part in a session at 7.30 pm. He is a talented composer, arranger, producer and instrumentalist and had one of the largest live concert gatherings in Istanbul with over 250,000 people attending. Prior to Sami Yusuf's session, renowned American writing and blogger Jasmine Brett Stringer will present an interactive session about the use of social media in marketing.

On November 8 at 7 pm, Hatoon Zuhair Al Kadi, Saudi writer and host of comedy YouTube show “Noon Al Niswa”, will talk about her satirical show and the reasons for its success. Comedian Mohamed Hassan, the host of “Shokhout” on Instagram will participate in a session at 7 pm on November 9 to highlight the role of comedy in getting people’s attention. On November 10 Jordanian comedian Rajae Qawas will talk in a panel "Laugh for life" at 7 pm.

Other speakers include young Emirati Chef Bader Al Wadahi on November 11 who will talk about his show on You Tube that demonstrates basic cooking techniques. On November 12, visitors to the social media station will be taken on a virtual tour around the world by Palestinian media personality Haifa Besiso who will highlight her travel experience and her You Tube show “Fly with Haifa”.

The social networking platform will conclude with two cultural sessions, the first called “Reading is Life” at 7pm on Friday, November 13. The details of all these sessions will be broadcast via SIBF sites through hashtag #SIBF15.

For the first time since it was first launched in 2012, the social networking platform will organise an array of events aimed at attracting more visitors to the fair, particularly children and youth, amid an atmosphere of fun. Among these events is an open video game tournament involving PlayStation and Xbox games.

Visitors will also get a chance to take a "Selfie" through an interactive screen that contains covers of international magazines along with the logo of the Sharjah International Book Fair, whereby the picture looks like the real thing and then it can be posted on their social media pages.