Al-Jazeera's toned-down coverage is surprising and ironic in light of the current media landscape. Indeed, al-Jazeera America is launching at precisely the moment when cable news is cratering in the public imagination.
Polemic sells. I've made a profit off it for years, and I'm not sorry. But while some of it may be thoughtful or amusing, we must recognize inflammatory speech as nothing more than a rhetorical vessel and stop allowing it to dominate our entire discourse.
Two recent low-budget productions demonstrated the trickiness of trying to wrestle a complicated story filled with complex characters into a manageable format that can hold its audience's attention while keeping to a reasonable time frame.
"We have to stop. I'll break my axle if we go any further." In providing a tour a couple weeks back to a reporter from the recently launched Al Jazeera America, William Alston-El and I had to turn around as we headed into an alley in Barry Farm.
A crucial contradiction lies at the heart of Al Jazeera's chosen path toward securing a place in the United States news landscape... a central flaw that (barring a miracle) is bound to result in failure.