Qatar forum to discuss effects of “low channels” on youth

June 21, 2010

Qatar will this weekend host a forum on the effects of “low” television channels on young people.

According to organizers of the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) cultural forum on June 26-30, the meeting will discuss how some channels are “intellectually destroying, morally corrupting and financially abusing young people in the region.”

“The theme of the forum is in line with the message launched by Shaikha Mozah Bint Nasser Al Missned, wife of Qatar’s emir, to encourage media freedom but without challenging laws and moral values and exploiting people financially,” the organizers said.

Each of the six GCC countries will submit a paper on the issue and will suggest ways to tackle the growing phenomenon of “low channels”, said Nasser Al Jabri, the head of social activities at Qatar’s culture ministry.

According to sources working for the Arabsat, the number of Arab television channels has in 2010 increased to 600, broadcasting on platforms such as Arabsat, Nilesat and Noorsat.

However, conservatives have complained that some of the channels have taken advantage of the liberalization of the telecommunication sector and the impressive growth of the Short Message Service (SMS) technology to capitalize on interactive television where the programming is “cheap and low”, but the viewers’ interest in SMS communication and dialogue with other Arabs through messages is “high and lucrative.”






About the author

Born August 3, 1960 in Monastir, Tunisia
Media career:
  • ABC News (Tunisia)
  • Bahrain Tribune
  • Gulf News
  • Bahrain Television News
Teaching career:
  • Monastir (Tunisia)
  • University of Bahrain
  • MA  Mass Communications, University of Leicester
  • BA  in English & US literature and studies, University of Tunis

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