"Egypt in Flux: Essays on an Unfinished Revolution" by Adel Iskandar.
Adel Iskandar "proposes the concept of "contextual objectivity" as a critique of media's coverage of war. He writes a regular column for Egyptian independent newspaper Almasry Alyoum, and teaches in the Communication, Culture and Technology (CCT) program as well as the Center for Contemporary Arab Studies (CCAS) at Georgetown University."Al Jazeera Became Al Morsi:
Professor Adel Iskandar says that under Morsi, "Al Jazeera Arabic almost became an extension of government media directed towards Egypt," and that there was a, "psychic reaction on the part of Egyptians who after a year of Morsi's time in power saw that Al Jazeera Arabic was doing a disgraceful job covering the failures of Morsi, and instead drumming him up."Transcript of The Excerpt From The Video Below, From 20:08 - 24:35.
"Interviewer: Adel Iskandar, you say the media is only reflecting public opinion, but shouldn't there be some room to discuss proportionality, those pesky international standards of proportionality. So, if someone has a rifle in crowd of people it doesn't give you the excuse to kill everyone or at least kill loads of people surrounding them, and so forth. Do journalists really buy what they're doing? Do they feel that they're doing the right thing, as far as you can see?
Adel Iskandar: Well, I mean, for the most part, the pattern is that public opinion is both shaped by the media and public opinion is a consequence of the media. So really the dynamics are two ways, but at the end of the day, excessive violence is excessive violence. Brute force is brute force.
During the War on Terror, or at the very least around 2002, when the U.S. media was busy drumming up support for the war in Iraq there was significant support for it, and you may not want to call it sort of active muzzling of the media, but it was definitely some sort of self-censorship. Egypt right now is going through its own 2002.Video Title: Inside Story - Egypt: Are foreign journalists lying? Source: Al Jazeera America. Date Published: August 20.
This is the construction of illusion that the Egyptian state has been doing for literally 20, 30 years. The Egyptian media have had a significant problem and the state information service, the office that issued the statement, has been trying to control media on Egypt for the last 10, 15 years. Today it's not going to be any different.
The real sort of significant turning point is the fact that the Egyptian public for the first time in a very long while is actually cheering on as the Egyptian private networks as opposed to just the state television are coming out in disfavour against the Muslim Brotherhood and basically accusing them of violence on their front, and absolving the state of the violence that it's committing. So really there are two sides of the story. And the two sides are not being represented equally depending on which side politically some of these media organizations lie. But the state is still incapable of controlling the message functionally as far as the international media is concerned.
Interviewer: But professor and scholar I wonder whether the part of the problem there is is there's not two sides to the story, there's at least three, maybe four, maybe five. There are quite a few sides. The opposition to the military is being summarized as pro-Morsi/Muslim Brotherhood, it's either you're with us or against us. I wonder whether that narrative which has been taken on by the international media is actually helping the military.
Adel Iskandar: You've absolutely nailed it. The key here is to dichotomize and binarize the Egyptian audience largely, which is exactly what's happened. You have the state media during the Morsi era basically pushing a specific agenda, the other side, the private networks become the immediate opposition, the watchdogs, and then all of a sudden the entire system crumbles completely. And then you end up having stations like Al Jazeera, if you will allow me to say, especially Al Jazeera Arabic which is directed towards Egypt, playing a significant role in drumming up support for the Muslim Brotherhood. And that in and of itself became sort of a psychic reaction on the part of Egyptians who after a year of Morsi's time in power saw that Al Jazeera Arabic was doing a disgraceful job covering the failures of Morsi, and instead drumming him up. So Al Jazeera Arabic almost became an extension of government media directed towards Egypt.
Unfortunately, the polarization exists on all fronts. And the Egyptian public is being taken for a ride, and this ride is leading towards a very ominous outcome. But, at the end of the day, I think most news organizations, either for lack of professionalism or the inability to cover stories, or basically ignorance, are either missing one aspect of this story or not able to fill it in. And these voids are absolutely critical because they create the kind of gulf that can help lead Egypt towards a far more dangerous situation, akin to what's going on in Syria. I'm not saying that is going to happen, but, still, media polarization eliminates the middle ground. [20:08 - 24:35].