<$BlogItemTitle$> <$BlogItemTitle$>Broadcasters of Tomorrow

Sunday, January 14, 2007

Bloggers Attack the Largest News Agency in the World

For the past six weeks irate, right-wing bloggers have been accusing the Associated Press of faking news. Based on information the US government provided, the bloggers alleged AP's agenda was to paint a bleak picture of sectarian violence in Iraq. That came to an end recently when the US military admitted it had lied about a news source.

It all began in November, after AP ran a story about six Sunnis being attacked and burned to death by Shiites at a mosque. The AP story included a line about a source. The U.S. military, and the Iraq government, said the source never existed. The governments said that AP’s source on the story was made-up. They claimed the story was fabricated.

Conservative bloggers used the official story, that the witness never existed, to attack AP. Bloggers got busy criticizing the media. The blogsphere buzzed with posts about the left-wing bias of news reporting. They used the story to illustrate Western media’s alleged bias towards presenting Iraq in the worst possible light.

Then this week the US reversed its earlier denial and announced that the source was actually legitimate and that the story about six Sunnis being attacked and burned to death by Shiites at a mosque was true.

The rally by right-wing bloggers brings up questions. Who was behind the bloggers’ rally to attack AP? Why did the story, which received so much Internet traffic, get almost no coverage in mainstream media? Why did the US and Iraq governments deny the existence of the source? In the end, the governments’ denials, and the campaign against a credible news organization by right-wing online activists, shouldn’t come as a surprise. After all, the war was initiated by fooling US citizens, and the media, into a battle using a campaign of misinformation and half truths, by a leader who still doesn’t know the difference between a Sunni and a Shiite. In the words of a confused G.W. Bush “Fool me once…fool me once, shame on—shame on you. Fool me—you can't get fooled again."

Thursday, January 11, 2007

Arab Christian Exodus

The Crossroads Arabia blog has posted a piece about Christians leaving the Middle East.
"Recently, Baghdad and Mosul have been emptied of over 50 percent of their Christian inhabitants. Some of them have left out of fear, others voluntarily, and the rest have been forced to leave." The post links to an article by Hussein Shobokshi in the pan-Arab, Arabic daily Asharq Alawsat.

Monday, January 08, 2007

Video: Jailed Reporters & Bloggers

Students from The American University of Sharjah comment on blogging and the news that online reporters and bloggers are being jailed.

Monday, January 01, 2007

Dubai University Senior Lecturer: "Grades Are Grades"

Abu Dhabi's newspaper, The National, is reporting that some high school students are experiencing great dificulty adapting to the new math curriculum. According to the paper, some have asked the Ministry of Education to change how their final grades are calculated to more accurately reflect the difficulty of new the tests.

Educators said the new exams, which move away from memorisation of facts and figures, were necessary to provide an accurate picture of student performance.
Commenting on requests to adjust grades, Dr. Clifton Chadwick, a senior lecturer in the faculty of education at the British University in Dubai said “grades are grades.”
The National reports that Dr. Chadwick’s sentiment is in line with the position taken by the Ministry of Education.

A recent Trends in International Mathematics and Science Study found that five times as many students in Dubai were taught by teachers who did not graduate in education than the international average.

Dubai’s TIMSS results, released in December, showed that pupils studying the national curriculum in state schools posted the lowest scores, lagging substantially behind their peers in private schools.
Full Article