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Media on Media Roundup (November 22)

[Crowds gather outside the offices of Turkish opposition newspaper Zaman to protest a police raid of the publication in March 2016. Photo from Democracy Now! [Crowds gather outside the offices of Turkish opposition newspaper Zaman to protest a police raid of the publication in March 2016. Photo from Democracy Now!

In this week’s Jadaliyya “Media on Media” roundup: The battle between the Turkish government and Turkish media continues. Hezbollah flexes its muscles in Syria, and the moon is ready for its close up.

According to a recent report published by Freedom House, Turkey has been downgraded to "not free" status as a result of the increasing government clampdown on media. In a counter-offensive, Turkish opposition outlets have begun courting international support, while TRT, a pro-Erdoğan state outlet, has announced plans for expansion to an English base in order to appeal to a global audience.

Also in Turkey, the debut of the Iranian film Muhammad: The Messenger of God, a film about the prophet’s early life, has recently caused a stir among Turkish critics who have had different reactions to the film.

Hezbollah has recently released a number of photographs from Syria, during its first-ever military parade on foreign soil. The photos, which revealed US-made weapons and artillery, raised questions among critics regarding the organization’s military capabilities.

The moon appeared a little bit bigger than usual this week, and the Arab world has taken to Twitter in reaction to the not-so-drastic increase in size.

All of these stories and more are available below in further detail.

Media and Politics

Concern over display by Hezbollah of American arms like those provided to the Lebanese army
Source: YaLibnan
Hezbollah militants flaunted US-made artillery and weapons during a military parade in Syria. Through their circulation on social media, the photos are raising questions about the status of Hezbollah as a regional power player.

Hezbollah shows off stolen US weapons to threaten Israel
Source: Observer
The timing of the release of images of Hezbollah fighters parading US-weaponry, as well the method of circulation (on Twitter), has led to much debate.

Qatari newspaper chief resigns following tweet on Saudi Arabia
Source: Gulf News
Editor-in-chief of Al Sharq newspaper Jaber Al Harmi recently criticized Qatar’s decision to increase public servants’ salaries, amidst regional shift towards a less oil-dependent economy, leading to his recent resignation for “personal reasons.”


Iranian film about Prophet Muhammad causes stir in Turkey
Source: Al-Monitor
Iranian director Majid Majidi has recently debuted his film Muhammad: The Messenger of God in Turkey, which documents the prophet’s early life. This has led to a number of critical reactions to the aesthetic, religious, and sentimental values portrayed in the film.

How modern art is helping bridge Arab-Iranian divide
Source: Al-Monitor
Based on Mahmoud Darwish’s poem "The Sea Suspended," an Iranian contemporary showcase hopes to bridge the political differences between Iran and the Arab World through artistic and cultural exchange.

ديلان والأدب ودنيا لا تبقى على حال
المصدر: مدى مصر
تبدأ هذه المقالة بإلقاء الضوء على ردات فعل الأدباء العرب لفوز المغني الأميركي بوب ديلان بجائزة نوبل للأدب، لتنتقل لمناقشة ما يعني أن يكون المرء أديباً في العالم العربي.

Media Industries

International Media Investments acquires ownership of The National
Source: The National
The English language newspaper was sold to Abu Dhabi-based International Media Investments (IMI).

Intelsat is named satellite operator of the year at 2016 Arab states broadcasting union BroadcastPro Television Awards
Source: Business Wire
The award recognizes Intelsat’s continuing leadership as the innovator in space-based communications across the region.

Abu Dhabi's Image Nation partners with Culture China for $300M film fund
Source: Al-Bawaba
The China Intercontinental Communication Center (CICC) has established a $300-million fund with Image Nation Abu Dhabi to co-fund movies and TV productions in Hollywood, the United Arab Emirates and China.

TRT World launched as public broadcaster seeks global appeal
Source: Daily Sabah
While most Turkish media outlets are under increasing pressures from authorities, TRT, Turkey’s public state television outlet, launched its English-language channel TRT World to appeal to a more "international" audience.

Freedom of Journalists/Expression

حكم غير مسبوق بالحبس عامين لنقيب الصحفيين وعضوين بمجلس النقابة.
المصدر: مدى مصر
في ظل الضغوطات المتزايدة على الصحفيين في مصر، قضت محكمة جنح مصرية بحبس نقيب الصحفيين المصريين وعضوين بمجلس النقابة عاميْن بتهمة إيواء صحفي ومتدرّب بمقر النقابة مع علمهم بأنهم مطلوبين لسلطات التحقيق في أيار الماضي.

UN says freedom of expression in Turkey "grim"
Source: Middle East Online
The UN has expressed concern over Turkey’s repressive media practices, claiming that the failed coup does not give authorities the green light to suppress all forms of freedom of expression.

How Turkey is strangling the internet---and hurting media freedom
Source: Middle East Eye
Turkey’s clampdown on the media has led to its downgrade to become "not free" according to a recently published Freedom on the Net 2016 report, which monitors freedom and democracy globally.

Pixels of War: One student’s path to photography in eastern Aleppo
Source: Syria Deeply
Syrian photographer Yehya Alrejjo recounts how the Syrian uprising and war transformed him from a student of chemistry to a photographer with the opposition in the besieged and fiercely contested city of Aleppo.

Turkish opposition newspaper Cumhuriyet finds a voice in German media
Source: Middle East Eye
Thirty-seven German newspapers and their websites have shown their support for Turkish opposition newspaper Cumhuriyet, which has been raided by authorities.

Social Media

Super moon looms over Twitter across the Arab world
Source: Al-Arabiya
The article compiles reactions to last weekend’s super moon.

How social media helps dictators
Source: Foreign Policy
While some believe that social media platforms have "liberated" the public by enabling freedom of expression and active engagement in public debates, it has also enabled regimes to manipulate information and boost surveillance practices

Snapchat Getting In With the Big Guns
Source: Outlook (AUB Student Paper)
Snapchat has recently published ‘live’ coverage of the battle for Mosul, leading many to question the platform’s legitimacy as a news source and the problems which arise from such sensational coverage.

Media Practices

The Terminology of Terrorists
Source: The McGill International Review
This article takes a critical look at the evolution of ISIS as an Al-Qaeda division in addition to the evolution of the term "DAESH."

Social Media’s Globe-Shaking Power
Source: NYTimes
In the aftermath of the US presidential elections, social media platforms are being credited as powerful transnational entities that are capable of skewing reality.

الإعلام الإسرائيلي يحتفي بمرور 20 عاما على انطلاق "الجزيرة"
المصدر: انفراد
تعلّق هذه المقالة على كيفية احتفاء صحيفة "يديعوت أحرونوت" بمناسبة مرور 20 عاماً على انطلاق قناة "الجزيرة"، حيث وصفتها بأنها غيرت وجه العالم العربى من خلال متابعتها للأحداث فى الشرق الأوسط.

From Jadaliyya Media Roundups

"I froze, realising I'd stepped on a body:" Syrian journalists in their own words
Source: Syria Jadaliyya Media Roundup
Five reporters in exile describe the risks they have taken and the horror they have witnessed reporting the civil war.

#600Days of siege & genocide: Twitterstorm calls for an end to Yemen conflict
Source: Arabian Peninsula Media Roundup
Yemenis take to social media to bring attention to the suffering created by the war through a social media campaign.

Oman: Case against “Azamn” journalists must be overturned on appeal
Source: Arabian Peninsula Media Roundup
A coalition of rights groups appeals in advance of a verdict, expected on 17 November.

Oman: Writer, cinema critic and online activist Abdullah Habib sentenced to three years in prison
Source: Arabian Peninsula Media Roundup
Habib was immediately detained incommunicado by the Special Division for using the internet.

Marc Owen Jones: Saudi Propaganda Flooded Twitter with Over Million Fake Accounts
Source: Arabian Peninsula Media Roundup
The accounts have been used to demonize Sheikh Isa Qassim and the Bahraini opposition.

["The Media On Media Roundup" is an initiative to survey published material in the news and broadcast media that deals with journalism, coverage, or mass communication practices about the region. These roundups are produced and curated in collaboration with the American University of Beirut's Media Studies Program. The items collected here do not reflect the views of Jadaliyya or the editors of the Media Page.]

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