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Posts Tagged ‘Al Jazeera’

Al-Jazeera Makes the News by Being the Same as Everyone Else

America’s racists are having a tough week. Not only were many of them exposed earlier this week for freaking out on social media after a foreign, brown woman from the dubious nation of New York won the Miss America pageant, but it turns out Al-Jazeera, the Qatar-based media juggernaut, is also messing with their bigoted characterizations of other races, religions and cultures.

In fact, the reporters, editors and producers at Al-Jazeera don’t want the death of America any more than CNN, FOX News or MSNBC. Need proof? Check out this report by the Pew Research Center, an independent think tank tasked with monitoring the media. As public relations professionals, we can only ask one question: Where does Al-Jazeera go from here?

What happens when the vilified boogieman turns out to be the affable cat lady? Al-Jazeera has missed a golden PR opportunity to differentiate itself in a meaningful way from the competition. The last thing America media needs now is another CNN, FOX News or MSNBC. Al-Jazeera was supposed to return real American journalism to America, while these other networks festooned with screaming eagles and undulating flags continued to feed the public emotional drivel, intellectual smut and political grab ass. Read more

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Will Al-Jazeera America’s Name Doom It to Failure?

Today’s biggest news in journalistic circles concerns the debut of a cable outlet called Al-Jazeera America, which should begin broadcasting across the US right about…now.

The channel promises to offer Americans a “more sober” take on world news and investigative reporting that transcends the talking head pile-ons that have come to define the FOX/CNN/MSNBC trifecta and the light celebrity gossip that provides such a large share of all networks’ bottom lines.

Journalists at AJAM (which is bankrolled by the royal family of Qatar) take their reporting very seriously. As of today’s debut, programs will contain only six minutes of commercials per hour—and a quick look at the parent network’s Facebook page reveals a collection of matter-of-fact reportage on big international stories.

This is all very encouraging, but Al-Jazeera America has one (very big) problem: its name.

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Revolving Door: ‘NYT’ news, WHCD criticism, ABC & Univision

The New York Times started a new biweekly video series today, all about street style. The premiere episode profiles Fort Greene, Brooklyn. [h/t]

Separately, the Times has debuted ads to up its thriving digital subscriber numbers. And some of its reporters appear in a video urging the paper to settle a contract dispute with staffers.

Tom Brokaw thinks the White House Correspondents Dinner is too much of a “glittering event.” Fox News’ Ed Henry, who is also the president of the White House Correspondents Association isn’t opposed to change.

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Qorvis Working to ‘Make Note of the Reforms’ in Bahrain

A protest in Bahrain in February. Photo: Reuters

In an email to PRNewser, Matt Lauer, partner at Qorvis, said the work the firm is doing with the government of Bahrain is meant to highlight the changes that are happening in the country.

In a recent article, Salon notes that Qorvis has submitted a Foreign Agents Registration Act filing stating that it’s being paid $40,000 per month for reputation work on behalf of the government of Bahrain.

Lauer notes in an email to us that the firm has worked with the Bahraini government (“a long-term American ally”) on a variety of projects for more than a year. “We are actively working to make note of the reforms and progress currently underway in the country,” Lauer added.

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Al Jazeera Cancels Broadcasts of Bahrain Documentary

Bahraini protesters in June. Photograph: Hamad I Mohammed/Reuters

Al Jazeera has decided to cancel a number of rebroadcasts of a documentary, Shouting in the Dark, about the Bahraini government’s crackdown on pro-democracy protesters in February and March. Last Thursday’s debut of the doc was met with complaints from the Bahraini and Saudi governments, fueling talk of the network’s bias in favor of those that the Qatari government shares diplomatic relations. The emir of Qatar finances the network.

After The New York Times began asking about the documentary, a network spokesperson said it would rebroadcast it with a roundtable discussion. The documentary features secret footage captured during the protests. The government of Bahrain curbed media coverage of the uprisings . You can also watch the documentary on YouTube.

Yesterday, it was reported that the Bahraini government had hired Qorvis to help repair its reputation.

Social Media at the Center of Al Jazeera’s ‘The Stream’

Al Jazeera has debuted The Stream, a program (it airs via live-stream Monday through Thursday at 3:30 EST and will debut on TV on May 2) that relies heavily on Storify and social media technology to discuss the impact that social media is having on current affairs. Al Jazeera is hoping to use The Stream to reach “cord cutters” (as Fast Company calls the new cable subscription-less population), engage audiences via social networks, and break through to American audiences following its success covering the uprisings in the Middle East. ReadWriteWeb and Lost Remote also have reviews and discussions of the new show.

Traditional outlets have been turning to citizen journalists for some time now, incorporating user-generated content, Twitter, Facebook, and blogs to enhance its coverage and better relate to audiences. You can watch a replay of the premiere of The Stream here. What sort of impact do you think this format will have on news programming and media relations?

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Al Jazeera Tracking Tweets from Egypt, Libya, Yemen, and Bahrain with Twitter Dashboard

Al Jazeera has introduced a Twitter dashboard to chart the news and tweets about the revolts in Egypt, Yemen, Libya, and Bahrain. Mashable says the news organization is a little late to this game, but more importantly, it’s one more way that Al Jazeera is taking the lead in covering these uprisings.

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