Q&A: Can Al-Jazeera's CNN Moment Last?
Al Anstey, the managing director of Al-Jazeera English, spoke with Multichannel News editor-in chief Mark Robichaux from Doha, Qatar about the opportunity for the news net's English service.
By Mark Robichaux -- Multichannel News -- Broadcasting & Cable, 2/4/2011 6:17:50 PM
As the crisis in Egypt unravels, one network more than others has opened a window for the world. When the first demonstrators gathered in Cairo and Alexandria to call for the end of President Hosni Mubarak's regime, Al-Jazeera English's journalists provided crucial video for U.S. news outlets.
Egyptian authorities have banned Al-Jazeera's journalists from the country, revoked their credentials, and arrested or detained many of them. Journalists from numerous news outlets have been subject to violence.
To counter the shutdown of the network in Egypt, a live feed of Al-Jazeera English's service still flows to a variety of outlets: Dish Network, DirecTV, Roku box owners and on Dailymotion.com, its own website, youtube.com/Aljazeera and Livestation.com.
Despite the public accolades for its coverage, though, the five-year-old network has no fans among big cable operators. Hardly any carry the channel. In the U.S., Al-Jazeera English is carried by a few small players, such as Buckeye CableSystem and Burlington Cable.
Al-Jazeera, whose name means "the island" in Arabic, is funded by the Emir of Qatar, and while fans rally around its journalism, some critics say the network airs anti-American content.
As the street battles raged, Al Anstey, the managing director of Al-Jazeera English, spoke with Multichannel News editor-in chief Mark Robichaux from Doha, Qatar.
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