3 Jan

Al Gorzeera

Al Jazeera buys Gore’s Current TV, terms undisclosed

LOS ANGELES/NEW YORK (Reuters) – Al Jazeera said on Wednesday it will buy Current TV, the struggling cable channel founded by Al Gore and partners, in a move that will boost the Qatar-based broadcaster’s footprint in the United States.

Terms were undisclosed, but analysts estimated the deal could be worth as much as $500 million.

Al Jazeera said it would start a new U.S.-based news channel with the acquisition, which will make it available in more than 40 million U.S. households, up from 4.7 million prior to the deal.

The deal brings Al Jazeera, which operates under the patronage of the emir of Qatar and his family, into closer competition with American news channels like CNN, MSNBC and Fox.

But the award-winning channel that is seen in more than 260 million homes in 130 countries faces hurdles with U.S. distributors and viewers, television industry analysts said.

Current, a liberal channel which has battled low viewership, had been distributed in about 60 million of the 100 million homes in the United States with cable or satellite service.

One of its distributors, Time Warner Cable, which accounted for about 12 million of those homes, announced late Wednesday it was terminating its carriage deal.

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15 Responses to Al Gorzeera

  1. Hard Right says: 1

    Glenn Beck tried to buy it, but was refused. They would rather sell to an anti-American propgandists than a Conservative.
    And the left wonders why we call them hate mongering America bashers.

    ReplyReply
  2. johngalt says: 2

    @Hard Right:

    I was bombarded on the TV over the holidays with ads for CurrentTV. In the ad they claimed that their documentaries were the “real truth”, then proceeded to use Michael Moore as their posterchild for the “truth”.

    I truly wish that cable or satellite tv would allow for a la’ carte type programming, where you could pick the channels you wished to include in a specific package detailed just for you. I believe that the first one to do so would make a fortune when everyone switched over to them. That way, I could get rid of CurrentTV from my existing channel lineup, as well as some other liberal programming channels like MSNBC, that I never watch, yet am somehow paying for.

    ReplyReply
  3. Nan G says: 3

    CBNC floated the price tag of $100 million.
    We already get a couple of international news channels.
    Some of them offer Arab-leaning news (maybe Al Jazeera) during their 24-hour rotation.
    But, after you check out channels like this because of some crisis in an area and see how propagandistic it is you have no interest in going back.
    During the attacks from Gaza into Israel that led to a massive retaliation a few years back I used the web to watch an Alarabiya camera and news show from Gaza.
    The news reader showed real concern when she felt rockets blow out the windows of a lower floor of her building.
    Then, you could see her relief and her joy as she realized they had been FIRED from INSIDE her building toward Israel!
    She was a human shield and she liked it!
    See it here:
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JY50cktUKbA

    ReplyReply
  4. Hard Right says: 4

    @johngalt:

    Same here, but then the cable companies would have to eat the cost of the cruddy liberal channels they carry.

    ReplyReply
  5. Nan G says: 5

    Intel announced today their intent to set up a ”pay-per-channel” system where you can just take whichever channels you really watch.
    Won’t that be a pip?
    I could save almost $80/month just cutting out all the channels I never watch but have to take as part of ”packages” to get those few channels I do watch!

    ReplyReply
  6. W. C. Taqiyya says: 6

    I watch Al Jazeera and I watch the BBC and several other overseas outlets from Europe and Asia. I don’t bother wasting my time watching the domestic MSM at all. Our domestic cable and network so-called news is total crap. FOX included. At least with the overseas stuff you can get some news and a clearer picture of what is happening. Imperfect to be sure, but I don’t have the money to travel constantly around the world.
    For a hoot, check out the North Korean on line propaganda outlet. Fun stuff. They desperately need an English language expert to supervise whoever they have translating. Al Jazeera on the other hand features some of the best material around. The best propaganda? Maybe so, I will still watch it over the crappy propaganda I see on CNN.

    ReplyReply
  7. johngalt says: 7

    @Hard Right:

    True, but they would make much more off of giving people the ability to pick up other channels they might wish to have, but don’t want to necessarily pay for. For example, I’d love to not pay for CurrentTV and MSNBC, and then pick up some of the FoxSports channels, or maybe one of the various movie channels to make up for it, and I’d be willing to pay the same as I do now. Maybe they could go $1 a channel or something. There are so many channels I don’t watch right now that I’d never miss if they weren’t there.

    Instead, in order to get a certain channel I have to pick up a bunch of others that I wouldn’t watch, and pay out the nose for them, while not watching them. It’s a completely inefficient system they have set up, and benefits those channels such as CurrentTV who have barely anyone watching them, while the other popular channels get paid the same as the ones that aren’t. No competition. No incentive to really make something of substance for the viewers. That’s why there are so many asinine “reality” type shows on the various channels right now. Because all the tv stations have to do is fill up their programming schedule, and to hell with trying to put out something really good.

    Hell, maybe I should just cancel it altogether. Get Hulu or something and wire it up to the TV. And with the quality of the digital channels locally, I’d never really miss the shows I really like.

    ReplyReply
  8. Smorgasbord says: 8

    @Hard Right: #1

    When you find out why Current sold to Al Jazeera, the two belong together.

    Current TV CEO Joel Hyatt said he and former Vice President Al Gore are “thrilled and proud” to announce the news. Hyatt added: “When considering the several suitors who were interested in acquiring Current, it became clear to us that Al Jazeera was founded with the same goals we had for Current: To give voice to those whose voices are not typically heard; to speak truth to power; to provide independent and diverse points of view; and to tell the important stories that no one else is telling. Al Jazeera, like Current, believes that facts and truth lead to a better understanding of the world around us.”

    ReplyReply
  9. W. C. Taqiyya says: 9

    @Smorgasbord: What Al Gore wants is long since dead. He is irrelevant. Unfortunately, the West is also toast. Think in terms of barter.

    ReplyReply
  10. Gozer says: 10

    @Smorgasbord:

    Hate mongers of a feather…

    ReplyReply
  11. Smorgasbord says: 11

    @W. C. Taqiyya: #9

    Think in terms of barter.

    I’m not sure what you mean by this. Do you mean in the sense of, “I’ll trade you this for that.”? If you do, I still don’t know what you mean.

    ReplyReply
  12. W. C. Taqiyya says: 12

    @Smorgasbord: i don’t know what you mean by your comment that you don’t mean what barter means. it’s in the dictionary dude. look it up.

    ReplyReply
  13. Ditto says: 13

    Any speculation on whether it will be added to the White House’s cable TV service?

    Obama should love it. They hate this free republic almost as much as he does.

    ReplyReply
  14. Smorgasbord says: 14

    @Ditto: #13
    You got me to thinking. I’m going to guess that he encourages his people to watch it, if not the world.

    ReplyReply
  15. Nan G says: 15

    It turned out it was $500 million.
    Al Gore owns 20% so HIS part of the money is $100 million.
    Ironically Al Gore tried his hardest to get the deal done BEFORE the taxes went up on Jan 1, 2013.
    He would have paid only $9 million in tax but now will pay closer to $23 million.
    And this from Gore, who claimed ”the rich” SHOULD pay more!

    ReplyReply

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