Al Jazeera America Targets More Sophisticated, Educated Public
The Middle East based news agency will be catering to students aged 18 to 24 years
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Branding itself as a globally respected, even-handed news source, Al Jazeera America executive officers believe their programming will appeal to the college-age demographic. The networks are increasingly catering to students 18 to 24 years old. Al Jazeera America’s interim chief executive officer, Ehab Al Shihabi, says, "There is so much interest in this young demographic, and our core competitive advantage is appealing to them. They are global thinkers interested in international news."
Al Jazeera America President, Kate O'Brian, calls the news channel revolutionary in a media market saturated with sensationalized reporting and news pundits. "From a digital perspective we are very competitive," O'Brian said proudly. "We are not infotainment." Both Al Shihabi and O'Brian say the programming schedule on the news channel will deliver in-depth, fact-based reporting geared toward younger viewers.
Journalism professor Philip Seib, at the University of Southern California, wrote in an email that reporting outside the bounds of the typical news fare with a "more substantive news diet," could be just what a sophisticated, educated public wants. "The public may be tired of Lindsay Lohan and cop stories," Seib writes. "I hope that the news audience is not as stupid as news executives seem to believe it to be."
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