WAN-IFRA

A publication of the World Editors Forum

Date

Thu - 23.11.2017


Al Jazeera

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“Social media is not just transforming newsrooms – it’s transforming the very fabric of society,” says Riyaad Minty, Head of Social Media for Al Jazeera. “We are no longer the gate-keepers, and we need to understand this shift so as to make sense of it.”

“News organisations do not break the news any more: people break the news,” he says: the new news wires are social networks. When Minty heard that Osama Bin Laden had died, he immediately went to Twitter, and found an account of someone close to the site who was live-tweeting the raid. This was a totally different experience to turning on a TV.

Rather than become overwhelmed by this crisis of relevance, Minty said news organisations need to think, “How do we then effectively access this breaking news, package it and distribute it?” He was speaking at last week's World Editors Forum in Kiev.

In the future, we will see more and more information online, said Minty, and with this comes more noise, and more disinformation. Context becomes more and more crucial, and that is where news organisations thrive: Twitter can say what’s happening now, but not why.

Author

Emma Goodman

Date

2012-09-11 15:13

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Al Jazeera has launched a video campaign to teach people how to use Twitter and Facebook, with the ultimate aim of empowering them as citizen journalists.

The Qatar-based news organisation has started a new YouTube Channel named Al Jazeera Unplugged to distribute videos, teaching users the basics of social networking. 

For the moment, the information is very basic indeed. “Twitter is a website where people can send and receive ultra-short messages called Tweets,” begins one clip.

Users might question the wisdom of running an educational campaign about how to use social media on a social media platform – surely most people who are on YouTube already know how to use Facebook?

Author

Hannah Vinter

Date

2012-03-09 17:04

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Al Jazeera English has won its first Alfred I. duPont award for excellence in broadcast and digital journalism, announced the Columbia School of Journalism this morning. According to Columbia's website, the prize is the "equivalent of the Pulitzer Prizes" for broadcast journalism.

The award recognises the quality of the report "Haiti - Six Months on", part of Al Jazeera English's Faultlines documentary series. The program examines the aftermath of the earthquake that hit Haiti in January 2010 and is praised by the Columbia School of Journalism as "an emotional, accurate and visceral report about the lack of progress in reconstruction".

AJE was one of 14 prize-winners, including The New York Times, Detroit Public TV and Channel 4 BritDoc Foundation. But if AJE was not the only winner, this Poynter article suggests that it was, in some ways, the most significant.

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Author

Hannah Vinter

Date

2011-12-21 19:31

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The online reaction to the rebellion in Libya has been huge; and even if you don't follow him on Twitter, you will probably have heard about Andy Carvin's record total of 1,200 tweets over the weekend, documenting both the Libya situation and the earthquake on the East Coast of the U.S.A.

Tweets from officials and from foreign correspondents have all been standard components of many live blogs, helping to keep people all over the globe informed.

Yet again, social media has proved essential in forming both journalists' and the public's understanding of a dramatic and rapidly unfolding political situation.

In recognition of the power of social media, Al Jazeera has now decided to dedicate large amounts of airtime to news brought directly and exclusively from Twitter, according to The International Journalists Network.

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newsrooms_and_journalism/2011/08/social_media_and_al_jazeera.php

Author

Katherine Travers

Date

2011-08-24 16:55

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Al Jazeera has become something of a pioneer in the use of social media as part of its online news coverage. Now the network is taking steps to give the online world a more prominent status in its television programming as well. Fast Company reported yesterday on the launch of The Stream, the Al Jazeera's's most aggressive attempt to date to integrate social media into a live news programme.

The Stream is both a social media community that seeks out news and comments from people and a television programme on Al Jazeera English. While most television programmes have a website as a kind of addendum, The Stream's approach is different: "The concept of The Stream is actually a web community that has its own daily television show on AJ," the show's co-host Derrick Ashong told Fast Company. He describes The Stream as a 24-hour news show with a 30-minute broadcast component. Its website is already up, and the show is scheduled to start airing May 2nd.

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Author

Teemu Henriksson

Date

2011-04-19 14:09

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Al Jazeera's extensive coverage of the unrest in the Arab world has helped the news agency become something of an authority on issues relating to the region. Riyaad Minty, Al Jazeera's head of social media, recently took part in the Media140 conference in Barcelona. One of the discussed topics, Journalism.co.uk reported, was the network's approach of making use of on-location sources.

A key strategy for Al Jazeera, Minty said, was to get in early and make contact with important bloggers and sources. The idea was to identify key bloggers before protests broke out, so they could help verify information later on and act as citizen reporters.

"The key to getting in early is verifying information before the noise gets out," Minty said. "We had peoples' phone numbers, we could call them up and get things verified by them."

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Author

Teemu Henriksson

Date

2011-04-13 18:34

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As already reported, during recent uprisings in the Arab world, Al Jazeera has emerged as an unlikely news authority in the US and elsewhere.

As RNW's Media Network reported, coinciding with the debate in the United States about access to Al Jazeera English, Arab Media & Society has runn a study trying to assess how Americans received and evaluated AJE in the weeks after the Egyptian protesters.
The study underlined that Al Jazeera English, which claims to be the "world's first English language news channel to have its headquarters in the Middle East" (it is based in Qatar), despite covering regions under-reported by western media giants CNN International (CNNI) and the BBC, did not receive a welcome reception in the United States.

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Author

Federica Cherubini

Date

2011-03-18 17:20

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Al Jazeera has created a Twitter Dashboard to illustrate what is being tweeted about in the Middle East, and about where. The Qatar-based news organisation has attracted international attention for its coverage of the Middle East protests and revolutions, during which it had the advantage of being already well-installed in the region.

As well as a Twitter stream of all tweets about Egypt, Yemen, Libya and Bahrain, the dashboard shows the total number of tweets sent that day about each of these countries, and the average number of tweets per minute. It also graphs the number of tweets about these countries in the last hour.

Today, Libya is by far the most talked about, with an average of 90 tweets a minute at the time of writing, compared to about 50 for Egypt, 15 for Bahrain and 5 for Yemen.

The dashboard also shows the distribution of keywords (hashtags) in tweets about each country.

The scale of the graph is not very clear, and the Twitter stream moves so fast that it can be difficult to follow, but overall the dashboard provides a useful resource for getting an overview of what people are talking about on Twitter in the region.

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Author

Emma Goodman

Date

2011-03-08 12:21

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Positioned perfectly in the heart of Egypt's maelstrom, Al Jazeera has emerged as an unlikely news authority in the US and elsewhere. Not 'unlikely' because it hasn't been a major international news contributor in the past -- it has, notably during its post-9/11 coverage of the war in Afghanistan -- but because despite the fact that it only airs its English-language TV channel in three U.S. cities, it has managed to climb to the upper echelon of networks reporting on the Egyptian revolution, even among Americans. Al Jazeera's use of Twitter as a platform for self-promotion and up-to-date news dissemination helps to explain this Qatar-based organization's sudden explosion in popularity.

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web_20/2011/02/al_jazeera_attracts_massive_audience_thr.php

Author

Paul Hoffman

Date

2011-02-09 16:30

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Another major diplomatic leak has struck, but this time, it's not from WikiLeaks. Al Jazeera has obtained almost 1,700 internal documents from a decade of Israeli-Palestinian negotiations, from an unrevealed source. The diplomatic correspondence, dubbed The Palestine Papers, comprises "memos, e-mails, maps, minutes from private meetings, accounts of high level exchanges, strategy papers and even power point presentations," Al Jazeera said.

The news organisation has been given access to the 1,684 documents over the last few months and has "taken great care over an extended period of time to assure ourselves of their authenticity." The documents date from September 1999 until September 2010 and are almost all in English, the language of the negotiations.

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Author

Emma Goodman

Date

2011-01-24 12:21

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