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Thread: Al Jazeera America

  1. #1
    Asp'r the Contrarian SnakeMenPriest's Avatar
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    May 2003
    Chicagoland, Illinois; BUSH & sons Inc.

    Al Jazeera America

    Based on this find, Current TV will most likely turn into Al Jazeera America

    Al Jazeera buys Current TV, will launch new channel
    By Charles Riley @CNNMoney January 3, 2013: 8:20 AM ET

    Al Jazeera is buying Current TV from co-founders Al Gore and Joel Hyatt
    HONG KONG (CNNMoney)
    Pioneering Arab broadcaster Al Jazeera has acquired Current TV, and will use the network's wider distribution avenues to launch a new U.S.-based channel.

    The takeover will provide Al Jazeera with access to millions of U.S. households, a lucrative market the Qatar-based broadcaster has long coveted. The deal also means the end of Current, the low-rated channel co-founded by former Vice President Al Gore.

    Al Jazeera said it will shutter Current and create a New York-based network. Al Jazeera, which is financed by the government of Qatar, said it plans to expand its presence in the U.S., opening new bureaus and doubling its staff to 300 employees.

    "We are proud and pleased that Al Jazeera, the award-winning international news organization, has bought Current TV," Gore and Joel Hyatt, the station's co-founder and CEO, said in a statement released Wednesday.

    Current has long struggled to attract an audience in the U.S., emerging in its latest iteration as a left-leaning outfit fashioned in the image of Keith Olbermann, the firebrand host hired -- and then fired -- by the channel.

    Al Jazeera's English-language channel is currently available only in select U.S. markets. As of Wednesday, Current reached nearly 60 million households, according to an estimate from the channel's management. Access to Current's distribution channels will boost Al Jazeera's potential audience by millions.

    The financial terms of the agreement were not disclosed.

    Al Jazeera, ubiquitous in the Middle East, has tried for years to convince cable providers in the United States to add the channel to their lineups. But as the network sought to expand, it became something of a political hot potato, drawing criticism and allegations of bias.

    Related: GetGlue acquired by Viggle in social TV merger

    Al Jazeera insists that an American audience for the channel exists, saying 40% of online viewing of Al Jazeera English originates in the U.S.

    But if Current was acquired to provide access to more households, there were signs of trouble on that front Wednesday, as Time Warner Cable (TWC, Fortune 500) immediately moved to drop Current following the takeover announcement.

    "Our agreement with Current has been terminated and we will no longer be carrying the service," the cable provider said in a statement.
    Current was a nice idea when it first came out, but the rise of YouTube and similar sites destroyed that idea and led to the many radical changes it went through.
    It's kinda like G4 in a way, the execs kept changing it to attract "more viewers" while alienating the people the channel catered to, and will not be missed.

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  2. #2
    SoH Supporter He-Dad's Avatar
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    Mar 2012
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    On a side note, Al Gore made $100 MILLION on the deal. Not a bad pay day. I'ld say more but it would dive into Tar Swamp territory.... I'm just glad I have TWC...and they dropped the channel already.

  3. #3
    The Abominable Dr. Phibes Vincent Price's Avatar
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    Feb 2002
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    To be perfectly honest, I'd never heard of Current TV before this deal went down. $100 million? Wow.
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  4. #4
    Heroic Warrior BlueStreak's Avatar
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    Jan 2006
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    I'm curious to see how their coverage will be. AJ isn't the same news organization it was a decade ago and they often cover quite a bit of things relative to the Middle-East that mainstream US news ignores. AJ is usually one of the first places I hit up when I want news on that region.

  5. #5
    Not my Tempo Fendi's Avatar
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    Mar 2008
    Quote Originally Posted by BlueStreak View Post
    I'm curious to see how their coverage will be. AJ isn't the same news organization it was a decade ago and they often cover quite a bit of things relative to the Middle-East that mainstream US news ignores. AJ is usually one of the first places I hit up when I want news on that region.
    Al Jazeera English usually pick up most Asian topic and some European. IMO this will response people complaining about news bias.


  6. #6
    Heroic Warrior Nekk-ra's Avatar
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    Aug 2010
    I've been watching Al Jazeera English on one of my local PBS stations for the last three years. The station has a channel called MHZ Worldview that highlights news programs (such as Euronews, Russia Today, etc) and TV shows (especially crime dramas) from all over the world.

    Even though AJE has obvious biases, especially towards Israel, it's no worse than the bias displayed from the media organizations here in the U.S. I also like getting ACTUAL news (and not a bunch of fluff stories/celebrity gossip) about what's really going on in the world. Even if I disagree with what I see or hear, I appreciate the more well-rounded perspective.

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