Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Abu Dhabi Media Zone...Outlet for Soft Power?

Recently in a New York Times article it was announced that media moguls, CNN, Harper Collins, Random House, BBC, The Financial Times, and Reuters would join together to build a 200,000 square meter campus called the Abu Dhabi Media Zone.

The purpose of this campus is to mix western media with middle eastern oil money. The Media Zone will offer training to journalists and filmmakers in the region but it will also be a base for western companies to do business.

Harper Collins plans to expand there to take advantage of the growing market for English language books in the region.

With the credit crunch going on in the United States, Abu Dhabi could be a great place for Hollywood to find the dollars for big budget blockbusters.

Finally, Reuters will use their space on the campus to train aspiring journalists in the region.

With all of this money being pumped into an outlet for western media, it would seem that this would also be an ideal outlet for the United States to regain some of its soft power in the middle east. In many of our readings it has been said that a way for a nation to build soft power is for another to come to appreciate and want to adopt or emulate its culture, customs, and ideals. Abu Dhabi has, over the years, pushed to become a cultural center for the world. It would seem that now is the time to not only capitalize on those oil dollars being pumped into the media zone, but also to capitalize on it as an outlet to rebuild soft power by fostering the spread of western books, film, and journalism.
Forget the Voice of America, bring on the Media Zone…

1 comment:

leany said...

HarperCollins has recruited two Penguin publishers to lead its expansion in the Indian market. V K Karthika takes on the role of publisher and chief editor at HarperCollins India, overseeing its local publishing programme, while Krishan Chopra is joining as publisher and chief editor of Collins Business and Fourth Estate.
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