Monday, 9 February 2009


Following on from the recent Gulf News interview with Ibrahim Al Abed, the head of the National Media Council, Khaleej Times has now siezed its chance.

That interview is linked here. It contains a few gems. I particularly like:

KT: What should the journalist worry about in the new draft?
NMC DG: Nothing. I am serious. Nothing. But, I do not consider a journalist to be a journalist if he spreads out a rumour. I do not consider a journalist to be a journalist if he wants to attack the President in an insulting way. And, I do not think that a journalist can be a journalist if he doesn't take into consideration the general culture of the country.

KT: Do you think journalists here self-censor?

NMC DG: Yes. I do not know... We have nothing to do.

KT: There seems to be some kind of a fear. What is the fear?

NMC DG: I do not think there is a basis for this fear. For me, any journalist has his own code of ethics. He should have. This is some kind of self-censorship. I look at it from this way. If you look at the code of ethics that was issued by the journalists, by the editors of the newspapers, we have many restrictions within the code of ethics itself. This is exactly the self-censorship.


Tim said...

Well that's cleared that up then

Seabee said...

I really look forward to the explanations and clarifications which always come after announcements. They're better than a crossword to test my puzzle-solving powers.

Mr Hobnob said...

Indeed - please wait while I stitch my sides together.... or finish exhaling deeply and rolling my eyes.

Some wise fellow once said something like: "A democracy gets the government it deserves" but, being a bad journalist I can't be arsed to Google it.

Perhaps an even wiser fellow said something likes: "A mature media is a sign of development in society and culture."

Clearly, on this basis, the UAE is still in kindergarten.

Dave said...

You have nothing to fear.... credit crunch, what credit crunch???

rosh said...

Jesus! This is bullocks! Dragging us back to stone age.

the real nick said...

Just heard you on Catboy & Geordiebird. You are such a media tart. But then I remembered you are in fact in PR so you are indeed doing a good job 'being out there'. First Piers Morgan, now Catboy, whatever next?(the Alan Partridge show..)

alexander... said...

Ah, you'd have missed the slot on Dubai Today earlier in the week, then? Never mind, you can catch Business Breakfast this Thursday instead!

Total tart, no? Even I'm getting bored of the sound of my own voice. Time to take a media break, methinks!! :)

I'd break the silence to do Alan Partridge, though...

Graeme Baker said...

"A Danish paper attacked Prophet Mohammad (peace be upon him). It was said this is freedom of expression. Can somebody express freely his point of view about the Holocaust? Tell me? Nobody can. This means that there are things that have to be taken into consideration."

Someone did in the very same newspaper that interviewed this guy, IIRR. And nice bit of reverse anti-semitism in there.

Basically, journalists in the UAE are f*cked if they want to print anything that can be construed to be negative of the regime. Recourse to a court staffed and controlled by the ruling classes? Do me a favour.

I can only hope none of my former colleagues fall foul of doing a job that was promised to 'change the culture' of the country. Fat chance.

Anonymous said...

Well, this guy is telling nothing about the truth, absolutely nothing. he is the man behind the damn draft law, and must defend it, otherwise, he might see himself jobless. UAE media body strongly resisted the new draft law, not because if prevents insulting others, but because it vigorously slams the freedom of press and expression. If someone reads the draft law, would easily discover those. UAE press is still in kindergarten when it comes to freedom of speech? Well yes, but guys like this take them even back to nursery; he was a one grand slammer of free press in the country throughout the history.

The Spear said...

Please, I beg you, do Alan Partridge. I'll buy the DVD.

That show is damn funny.

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