“Autocratic Arab governments have long controlled news and information with an iron hand, writes Lawrence Pintak in the cover story of CJR’s May/June issue. “No more. They try to do so in 2011, but competing versions of reality seep in—and out—through every electronic pore.”

In this podcast, Pintak expands on his cover story, “Breathing Room: Toward a new Arab media” and the accompanying piece “English Lesson,” about the inaccessibility of Al Jazeera English on American television networks. He talks about the origins of Al Jazeera, Al Arabiya, and other television news outlets, their lasting impact throughout the region on middle eastern popular opinion, as well as the significant shift in American public opinion of outlets like Al Jazeera English during the “Arab Spring.” He also discusses how the death of Osama bin Laden has been handled in the Arab media.

Listen to the episode below, and be sure to check out the CJR podcast homepage on iTunes, where you can listen to past episodes and subscribe for free.



The Editors