BOOK REVIEW: Al Jazeera Effect provides useful terminology, leaves questions unanswered

LUTE Times

In 1997, George Washington University professor Steven Livingston coined the phrase “The CNN Effect” to describe the effect 24-hour news media outlets had on foreign policy.  In his book “The Al Jazeera Effect: How the New Global Media are Reshaping World Politics,” Philip Seib explores the rise of non-Western and transnational media and how it affects the same arena.  By addressing the prevalence of the Internet, satellite news networks, and virtual communities, Seib evaluates the present state of these new media outlets, and poses questions about their potential for the future, whether positive or negative.

One of the more prevalent themes of the book was the public desire for media ownership.  Seib cites many cases, including Al Jazeera, as filling a need for globally marginalized groups to share their beliefs and worldviews through a kind of “mainstream” news outlet.  The Al Jazeera effect, ultimately, is the rise of media that…

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