There are many avenues by which news reach the world, and it would be ignorant to say that news channels don’t sway events in order to earn political or social support. Some of these networks, however, have risen amongst the ranks and become some of the most widely watched and widely read news networks in the world. Two of the most influential networks today are The New York Times, and American-based organization, and Al Jazeera, based in the Middle-Eastern country of Qatar.
The New York Times and Al Jazeera are often not friendly news networks. At many points in the past few years, The New York Times has accused Al Jazeera of contributing to political upheaval and inciting violent actions in the Arab world. The New York Times has also accused Al Jazeera of being sympathetic, and even supportive, of certain unsavory Arab groups – even terrorist organizations. Al Jazeera has also been accused of taking obvious sides in international disputes while ‘picking and choosing’ what news should be reported first. Al Jazeera, however, is just as suspicious of The New York Times. It accuses the American news network of writing stories that fuel United States aggression towards the Middle East, such as stories containing false facts about nuclear weapons in Arab countries. It also claims that The New York Times continually misrepresents peoples and nations of the Middle East, leading viewers to believe the countries as riotous, supportive of terrorism or unreasonably violent. On one side, The New York Times claims Al Jazeera is argumentative and aggressive; on the other, Al Jazeera claims The New York Times is offensive and full of false representations. The same story displayed on both news networks can have an extremely different impact on the audience, thanks to these national, political and social discrepancies.
However, there is still a level of respect between the two networks that deserves some praise. The New York Times admires the outspoken, unrestrained nature of Al Jazeera’s broadcasts in a part of the world where many news channels are strictly regulated by government politics. Despite viewing some of their content as ‘inflammatory,’ The New York Times also holds much respect for the raw, uncut coverage Al Jazeera places on serious situations, such as revolutions and hostage situations. Al Jazeera is also not completely disappointed in The New York Times broadcasting. The network shows increased respect for the American news network, even honoring a deceased, Pulitzer-Prize winning New York Times reporter that was covering issues in the Middle East. These vastly different news channels have their share of disagreements, but both are fighting for a more influential spot in world news.