Al-Jazeera America faces steep climb among U.S. viewers

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(RNS) Leading cable and satellite news channels all struggled to gain and hold viewers, credibility and profit for years after their launch. But for Al-Jazeera America, deep-seated prejudices among some U.S. audiences are likely to make this uphill slog even steeper.

  • Leo

    What channels do they have in the Islamic world? Any non-Islamic religious programs?

  • SK

    What shows would you like to see, Leo? Soap operas, variety shows, sit-coms, documentaries, news programming, children’s shows … Muslims like the same stuff everyone else does. Try thinking of them as real people, because they are.

  • Dale

    Leo, I know nothing about television in the Middle East or in other predominantly Muslim areas. However, a quick Google search shows that, in Egypt, the Coptic Orthodox Church produces a satellite channel which is available for viewing throughout the Middle East and other parts of the world.

  • Judy Warren

    I think you’re doing a good job. The US is a freedom of speech country. I enjoy learning what you share.

  • Eugene Pagano

    Judging from the high quality content of its website and iPhone app, it should be a good news channel that will deserve to succeed.

  • Frankly,what would make me inclined to give AlJazeera a fair hearing would be if became a champion of women’s and minority religions’ rights in countries like Saudi Arabia,Pakistan,Afghanistan, The so-called Muslim World is long overdue for a sort of”Islamic Reformation”,if you will;if AlJazeera can get on board with campaigns against “honor”murders,blasphemy laws,and the blatant persecution of minority faiths in predominately Muslim nations,well…I’d be more than willing to give it a fair hearing.

  • Shak

    They are. If you watch programs they have produced as part of AJE on the same topic you are talking about. Do your research before writing… your comment sounds anti AJA.

  • SRC


  • Noor

    Al Jazeera presents the real news rather than the sensational stories we get on some of the other US News channels. It doesn’t numb the viewers with silly meaningless stories. When there are so many serious issues to address in the world, why make jabs at Lindsey Lohan when she is released from rehab again. News isn’t meant to be gossip, but the American audience seems to zone out and accept it.

    Al-Jazeera doesn’t play that game. It focuses on the news that matters. It is true news-reporting on topics around the world that actually matter. Today they are covering Martin Luther King rallies, the hunger strike in California prisons, the San Diego mayor’s resignation, Fort Hood case, the massive sink hole in Louisiana. Lots of worthy news, in my humble opinion.

    I actually prefer them to CNN and Fox and even MSNBC.

  • Lames

    We have a lot like CNN international, Sky News Arabia, BBC Arabic, DW Arabia, France 24 Arabic, Bloomberg TV and many more and all of them are broadcasting free-to-air 24/7, and people never care what channels you watch!

  • I appreciate what Al-Jazeera America is doing. I first heard about it at the Huffington Post Live. I appreciated the perspective of Ahmed Shihab-Eldin there.

  • Kay

    I was bitterly disappointed in our cable provider for not carrying AJA

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