Accuracy in Media

Al Jazeera America, which is set to launch on Tuesday, will have far fewer commercials than other cable TV news networks.

al jazeera america officeAccording to Ad Age, Al Jazeera America will initially be airing just six minutes of commercials per hour, compared to the 15 to 17 minutes on other cable news channels.

During a press call on Thursday, Al Jazeera America CEO Ehab Al Shihabi said that the primary goal of the network wasn’t to drive profits, but to deliver unbiased, fact-based news, with “less yelling and fewer celebrity sightings” than its competition.

Translation: Very few companies want to advertise on Al Jazeera America, so we are going to lose our shirt.

The lack of demand for ad time is due to the fact that the network is owned by the Qatari government, and advertisers are skittish about supporting a network that is seen by many as being sympathetic to al Qaeda and other extremist groups and points of view. In addition, the network will reach only about 50 million homes, which is far fewer than the other major cable news networks.

I’m sure this isn’t the kind of start that they were hoping for.

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  • Morpheos

    This is written by someone who hasn’t watched Al Jazeera. In the seven years since Al Jazeera English was established I have seen TWO different ads; One for Thailand, and one for UNICEF. Al Jazeera doesn’t normally do ads at all. They don’t need it. Look at Al Jazeera Balkan. No ads.

    If they wanted they could’ve cajoled companies like Tiffany’s, Porche, Volkswagen, Barclays, Royal Dutch Shell, Credit Suisse and more to advertise, since it owns stakes in those companies.

  • GovSlacker

    Al Jazeera is the Middle Easts version of PBS. it is very lame and liberal. They have no feel for the American market. It should be a colossal failure.