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tv   Listening Post  Al Jazeera  January 10, 2016 6:30am-7:01am EST

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and a landscape reminiscent of dark days is getting brighter all the time. more news, comment, analysis at the website aljazeera.com. [ ♪ ] hello i'm richard gizbert, and you are at "the listening post". here are some of the media stories we are looking at. a diplomatic crisis spirals in
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the gulf as saudi arabia and iran work the media machinery. the numbers game, the u.s. media and the addiction to political polls. in dakar, bangladesh convicts and sentences those guilty of murdering a secular blogger, and... ..it's a jungle in there. new year's resolutions and the survival of the fittest at the gym. >> on january 2nd, when 47 executions took place in saudi arabia, including that of a shia cleric nimr al-nimr, the diplomatic fall out between the kingdom and its regional to was played out. the national narrative prevailed. the the execution of the sheikh was seen as part of a justified war on terrorism. in the islamic republic. the headlines cast the cleric as a dissident, the saudi action as a provocation, there was televised images of protesters
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ransacking the saudi arabian embassy. the development with saudi arabia and its regional allies severing diplomatic ties with tehran threatened to disrupt the process iran made on the international stage this past year. following the nuclear deal signed off in washington, having media pundits using terms. and the sectarian divide implicit in the telling of this story, the wins that pits sunni and shia, a binary that fails to get at the complexities involved. our starting point is the saudi arabian capital, riyadh. this is one of those stories where almost nothing is as clear cut as some. coverage would have up belief. in a way, it's two of those
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stories. the same events recounted differently. depending on which country's media you are watching. >> saudi arabia's coverage of the crisis - there was never a focus that you have seen in american media and british media, and media elsewhere. >> in iran, it was very much a case of very, very shrill reaction to the execution of this cleric. >> he had strong ties to the republic, his role as an act cyst, and manning the rights for
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saudi arabia embattled area. and eventually the clash of vision escalated as we know. >> when came pictures of news embassies. the mobs that touched a saudi embassy took a story about the excuse of a cleric and gave them a clans to rewrite it. saudi arabia responded. leaving tehran with a public relations challenge on its hands. >> iran was on the back foot trying to figure out how to cast the story. president hassan rouhani, the reformist media and the hard line media condemning the attacks, distance themselves and
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that as the narrative iran pushed back against. >> hassan rouhani's people trying to send a message out through its own media including the official newsagency say. >> saying look, we are trying to arrest the guys that breach the embassy. we know haverd liners are here, we are trying to stop that. >> the idea that the iranian media would sing from the same song sheet is unsurprising. it seldom happens. some news outlets are loyal to the leader. ayatollah khamenei. others are tied to the president hassan rouhani, considered a modernizer. others to the revolutionary
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guard. they don't necessarily coalesce. they have differing views and express them on the nuclear negotiations involving the u.s. on this story, involving saudi arabia, the news output has been atypically uniform. >> whether hassan rouhani manages the message about saudi arabia, this is the extremists against the world. >> the world needing to be united in the face of the extremism, which targets so-called infidels and targets in the west and behind. recasting it behind the terms, a conflict beyond all of that implicating the west and christians, and people of all backgrounds, not simply the shia of iran
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the counter media discourse came externally. iran oak advantage of that. four from shias. in the gulf and address the middle east. saudi arabia is better equipped to win a media reward. here comes the pan-arab news channel. and newspapers based in london. iran owns an arab pick news network. it was taken off the regional distribution satellite whose owners are saudi. the home field advantage extends so far. new questions about the relationship with saudi arabia
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are asked. there's no reason, but reduced dependence in the west. the saudi-led war in yemen not considered a success, and the coverage of editorial winds seem to shift. >> there has been a marked change in the way media is covered. huge numbers, but is not mentioned as much. >> the criticism sa warranted. where it's unwarranted, it's hypocritical for iranian media to criticise saudi arabia on human rights grounds. iran excluts more media that saudi arabia.
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the narrative is that iran is the problem, the exporter of terrorism. this is shifting in the west, around the iran deal, and you can see that in editorial pages. the execution and human rights is one thing discussed, acknowledged as part of reality as it has not been since my career in journalism began in the late 1990s. >> this story and the way it's been reported is not about the execution. it's just where it started. really look past the headlines and you have a power struggle between riyadh and tehran. it's about the changing geopolitics of a volatile
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region.
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>> this is one of the most important sites in the century. >> this linked the mafia and the church. >> why do you think you didn't get the medal of honor? >> i can't allow you not to go into that because that is your job. >> we gonna bring this city back one note at a time. >> proudest moment in my life. other media stories on the radar, in bangladesh, a court handed down death sentences to two men accused of murdering a secular blogger in 2013.
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a man was hacked to death. his murder the first in a series of attacks against bloggers in bangladesh. these convictions are the first of their kind. two students, one tried in absentia were given a death penalty, sim others convicted on charges related to murder. the head of a group prosecuted for in citing the crime was sentences to five years. the blogger and online activist network criticized the sentence saying we were surprised that the cleric that took the role got away with a gaol term. it appears the verdict aimed to protect some of the defendants. after nearly four months behind bars, a journalist has been
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released. he and a curd was working for vice news when he and his colleagues were rested. they were warning with a government. all three charged with working for a terrorist organization. they were quickly deported back to the u.k. on january 5th authorities released him but banned him leaving turkey. robert mahoney, the executive director said we are relieved he is free on bail:. >> a contentious law prompted the resignation of four journal lifts in poland, and complaints with the top human rights
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watchdog. the journalists worked at the state owned broadcaster, including a woman in charge and a best-known commentator. a legislation was improved by the lower house, putting tvp under the chrome of a new council aligned with the ruling law and advise party. the legislation gives the government the power to remove current people a group says it failed to meet e.u. standard. the government defended the move saying it's necessary to root out corrosion at media outlets. >> in china, a french journalist accused of manipulating the media. ursula worked for a french news magazine. she wrote a piece suggesting china showed solidarity with
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france, in order to win support of the uyghur separatist movement in the north-west of the country. the state-run global times published an article. the authorities saying they supported terrorism. on the 31th, her visa was not renewed, the first journalist expelled. the last was melissa chan, al jazeera reporter in 2012. her renewal was turned down after the network aired a documentary on china's prison system they call the u.s. presidential election the race for the white house, but how far should the media go with the sports analogy. what happens when the coverage is an obsession. >> there's a term. horse race journalism. if you go well in the polls, as donald trump has been, it adds up to free publicity, and that
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matters. with so many candidates, the media assist preoccupation comes at the expense of what they are supposed to do. proposals on issues mattering to the electorate. the real looser are not just the candidates logging behind but the voters. now the news outlets and poll that is would rather crunch the numbers than do the journal. >> >> reporter: for americans with a taste for politics, surgeoned morning has been the time they could get beyond the hectic coverage of the daily news cycle to broadcast past the headlines and into matters of substance. that is the way it was. >> face the nation, meet the
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press. we have a panel of journalists that sit around taking about the political moves of the week. >> they are almost talking about the horse race. >> where does it stand? >> they are talking about tactics, a ground game. >> you have to be seen as strong and carry out direction. who has successfully got their message out. >> who is winning, who is ahead. who will lose. what is the score. a lot the intengtuals complain saying it's not a horse race, it's supposed to be an exercise in democracy and people are supposed to consider issues facing the country. >> all of that is true. in the end it is a horse race, and people want to know what is the score.
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the polling industry covers news outlets, news channels have fresh data, the candidate and positive poll numbers are like free money, because they add up to exposure. top the polls, and the media takes top billing. >> trump on top with 39% support. >> now with the numbers slipping, trump announced it would start to spend money. >> we will make america great again. donald trump showed that he is obsessed with polls, he mentioned them in nearly every speech. he bases his cam an on how he is going. leading the critical state, and
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donald trump figured out a way to get back to the center of attention. >>. >> the shutdown of muslims. i do thing the proposal to ban muslims from entering the united states was in part a reaction to the polls. >> donald trump is the best example of someone who is gifted at getting free media coverage, applying to all campaigns. any time you see a politician trying to pull off a stunt, or make a proposal. a lot of reason behind that is for the media. every campaign has to chose the insteadia coverage. the way to do that is earlier on. people say we shouldn't pay attention to donald trump, but the polls show that people like
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them. >> how reliable are the polls. back in 2012, gallop, a name synonymous with the polls called the election for mitt romney. president obama won by 4%. the gallop announced that it would not conduct head to made polls in 2016. fox and cnn nounsed they'd limit debate. the poll published 10 reasons why that was a bad idea. among them sample thing problems. contrary margins and polls. >> when the cut off approached. marice suspended polls so the data could not be seen.
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>> the debates are a good champ. >> these republicans are on the stage based on rankings in the polls. >> the network defended on national polls to determine who makes the debate. many say that it translates in the national polls. >> this is the debates and polls for a contest that doesn't exist. voters are asked who are you for, and they are picking names out of the air. a lot of respondents are suspicious people are looking hard and wondering if it's coot as it used to be. >> a lot of people don't want top respond.
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the people who are answering your poll way not be restive. you may see a candidate at 20." if you look at who says no opinion or nobody, it's sometimes up to 40%. and that's a huge chunk and the media is focussing on 20% of who is winning. the pew research center found that journalism focused on polls. why in news organizations are they going on about them. if you write about a policy issue, there's a policy that they say your critic is based on bias. many plans are unrealistic.
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and moderators were tough on the candidates about the foundation. >> the tax would go up 97.9%. the response was not only that the candidates attacked the moderators, the rest did as well. the reason they did a horrible job was they asked tough policy questions and were accused of bias. so are journalist flogging a dead horse race. >> putting it to one side, et reality is just a numbers game.
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al jazeera america gives you the total news experience anytime, anywhere. more on every screen. digital, mobile, social. visit aljazeera.com. follow @ajam on twitter. and like aljazeera america on facebook for more stories, more access, more conversations. so you don't just stay on top of the news, go deeper and get more perspectives on every issue. al jazeera america. and finally regular gym goers will tell you the first two weeks of january can be an annoying time to work out. there's an influx of people
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proving to be temporary, determined to achieve the nears revolutions of a healthy lifestyle, body and me. fitness clubs are a natural habitat, and the video voiced over studies some of the behaviour of the primates at play. it was produced by a health and fitness youtube channel named after a uniquely indigenous species to california, beautiful dude. >> we also have the more vocal who yell and grunt in order to seek attention from all surrounding homosapiens. see you next time here at "the listening post".
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