Young Arabs have little time or respect for their traditional news media. They took to the streets because they refused to put up with the humiliating subservience and dehumanization that the controlling regimes and their savage media practices subjected them to—practices that their parents and elders could not protect them from. Nearly half of all Arabs between the ages of 15 and 29 say they have little or no faith in their country’s news media, according to recent Gallup surveys. The first task of journalists is to re-establish the relevance and credibility of news media with the half of Arab society who are under the age of 30.
Rami G. Khouri, Director, Issam Fares Institute for Public Policy and International Affairs at American University in Beirut, gives Middle Eastern and North African news organizations advice on how to improve their relevancy in rapidly changing media and political environments. Arab Media: Rebuilding Trust With Their Public.
Sidenote: In 2003-2004 I worked for an English-language paper in Saudi Arabia. When I asked native Arabic speakers on staff why they preferred reporting in English they generally answered that English-language media was considered more trustworthy than the local Arab press. — Michael