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The latest Middle East TV ratings that list actual tune-in of news channels, obtained exclusively by Worldcasting, show business as usual but also some surprises.
Al Jazeera, the Qatari government-owned channel, continues to hold forth in popularity in Egypt. Al Arabiya, funded in part by the Saudi government through a holding company, once again tops others in Saudi Arabia by a wide margin, but it also garnered impressive audience ratings in Iraq, where Alhurra, the U.S. government service, continues to trail its competition, there and elsewhere.
Who is the fairest of them all?
Worldcasting refers to White House presidential aspirants, and where public diplomacy could be headed in the next administration.
Miami, Fla. -- More than 70,000 celebrants are expected to pack Miami's Orange Bowl to mark Fidel Castro's departure, whenever that may come. TV/Radio Marti are at the ready to beam stories back to Cuba with expanded broadcasts.
The Orange Bowl blast, sanctioned by the City of Miami, will doubtless be mega-covered by domestic U.S. and international media, but there will be no cracking open of Piñatas, which will be officially banned from the Orange Bowl by the City.
Miami, Fla. -- Worldcasting's suggestion in an earlier posting that TV and Radio Marti programs be produced for all of Latin America -- not only for Cuba in a post-Fidel Castro world -- is receiving guarded reaction in Washington, DC.
MIAMI, Fla. -- TV and Radio Marti may have finally come of age. They are now beamed into Cuba by Miami's runaway powerhouse Spanish language station, and on DirecTV to circumvent the Castro government's broadcast jamming. With Fidel Castro's decline from power, could expansion of the Martis throughout Latin America be on the horizon?
You've got to be kidding, you say? Not so fast.
Jeane Kirkpatrick, the former U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations who died at age 80 December 8, will likely be recalled as the great master of public diplomacy shock and awe during the Ronald Reagan presidency. She was arguably the most effective champion of President Reagan's foreign policy objectives, who rivaled the president himself when it came to working the media.
Worldcasting was reminded this week of why the word "labeling" should be used with the greatest of care in the practice of public diplomacy.
One example was the trip to Turkey by Pope Benedict XVI, during which he sought to calm Muslim rage over his earlier quotation from a medieval text that labeled Islam a violent religion. It was also the week that NBC News decided to label the violence in Iraq as a "civil war," not simply a "war."
It may be too soon to tell, but it appears that Al Jazeera's plans to go public may have suffered a severe setback when its long awaited English channel failed to achieve major distribution into American homes following its November 15 debut.
Al Jazeera International has come up short thus far in its biggest effort yet to transform its maverick Middle East brand into an attractive worldwide public business investment.
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