December 31, 2012

Should BBC Be Worried About Al Jazeera?

Colin Freeman, Daily Telegraph

AP Photo

Out on assignment in Iraq this month, I bumped into two fellow newsmen from China Central Television, who have just opened their first permanent news bureau in Baghdad. My first thought was that they were a bit late: Iraq has been simmering down as an international news story since about 2008, and in the wake of the Arab Springs elsewhere in the Middle East, most big TV networks have already either scaled down their Baghdad bureaus or shut them altogether. However, for CCTV, as it's known, the new office in Baghdad is just one small pawn in a much bigger expansion plan, which, I was told, has seen them open 60 new bureaus worldwide. I almost dropped my notebook when I heard that. Yes, 60 new bureaus. To an old foreign correspondent like me, raised in an era of constant downsizing, that...

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TAGGED: UK, Middle East, Al Jazeera, CCTV, China Central Television, BBC

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