While I was away in Koh Lipe in southern Thailand, writing, running and sleeping, the first issue of Jashanmal Quarterly came out. Edited by myself it was the brainchild of Narain Jashanmal, who wanted to do something interesting in a print format. I think we have succeeded, with it’s large-format size, thick matt paper and fight colour on the cover, it looks and feels great. Issue one focuses on superheroes, and the comic book industry in general. It’s available at […]
Launched a news aggregator mail out yesterday: The Dubai Daily. A morning round up of the day’s headlines, it will comprise links, commentary and some sarcasm. Once we get to a certain number of sign ups, we will be expanding it into some interesting areas, so stay tuned.
Where would we be without the Khaleej Times? Probably in a much better place, but, having said that, the paper continues to batter the English language like it was a baby seal. Take the screen shot to the right. It shows just some of the ways English dies just a little, every day on the KT homepage. This is a world where pressure is piled, where governments duel, where debates stir, where PMs slam and where tongues are colourful. The […]
A new publication emerged in Dubai this week – Read, a weekly newspaper distributed on the Dubai Metro. It is, to be blunt, incredibly bad. The content is banal (the pro’s and con’s of coffee, Hollywood’s most stylish fathers) and the production amateurish (out of focus, lo-res pictures, bizarre design choices, wrong grid etc). For visitors coming to Dubai, Read will only confirm their worst suspicions of a city without any decent local media. The website is equally dire, looking […]
The recent events in Cairo have illustrated the dividing line between ‘old’ media (print) and new media (online). Whereas before people would have got their news from the newspapers, now they are getting information from a combination of sources: Social media – primarily Twitter and to a lesser extent Google Realtime Online – web-only sites and more interestingly ‘old’ media that has utilised new media properly. Two prime examples of this is the Guardian, which is showing a u-stream video […]
Gulf News long ago descended into farce, a rag-tag collection of pro-Government press releases, inane human interest stories and badly written opinion pieces. Yet it is still the number one selling newspaper in the UAE. This would suggest either: 1. The people who buy Gulf News have certain issues 2. The people who buy Gulf News do not read it (using it instead to stuff pillows, mattresses or cat litter trays) It is worrying that the country has such a […]
One of the few (OK, only) bright spots on the dire UAE radio scene is Dubai Today, a morning talk show on 103.8 FM. Today they had a journalist on – Chris Wright of The National – who failed spectacularly in understanding the mobile applications business. He was on the show to talk about his article in The National: Health, Wealth and the Pursuit of Appiness. It should have been an interesting show – apps, along with social media, are […]
We are into the final few days of the 2010 Assilah Festival and URBN‘s first experience of doing what we do at a festival. Some valuable lessons learned and some great ideas for future projects emerging. Turnkey media solutions will become more relevant as ‘old’ or ‘big’ media is just too slow to react to this ever changing landscape. This was apparent at Assilah. TV stations taking 30 minutes to set up shots and lighting, then hours to edit and […]
An image of Assilah in Morocco where I am covering the Assilah Festival 2010 for ADACH with my company URBN Travel. The town is beautifully located on the northwest tip of Africa which makes for some nice sunsets. It is also a nice break from the dirge on offer the in the UAE’s local media which continue to embarrass themselves on a daily basis.