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Playboy played on children’s TV & Al J’s birth 18, March 2010

Posted by thegulfblog.com in Al-Jazeera, Qatar.
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There is some consternation in the US at the moment after TV directors mistakenly played Playboy adult TV adverts during children’s programmes last week. Apparently, parents were none too pleased. The reason that I mention this on thegulfblog.com is that a very similar thing happened back in the mid-90s without which Al Jazeera, the Arab world’s most popular TV channel, would not have been able to get off the ground.

[Please excuse my vagueness at times as I can’t remember the technical terminology involved and I don’t have the source book with me right now.]

When Al Jazeera was originally broadcast it was only available to a relatively small number of people. This was because there is only a finite amount of ‘bandwidth’ for all TV channels and there simply was not the space for Al Jazeera. However, fortuitously – so to speak – a TV station broadcasting in Saudi Arabia (of all places…) accidentally broadcast what I seem to remember being described as really rather hard-core pornography during the day during children’s TV shows. Need I say that this really did not go down too well in the Kingdom of the Two Holy Mosques. The upshot was that the TV station in question (French or Italian, I think…) had its license and ergo ‘bandwidth’ stripped away freeing up otherwise rare ‘large scale’ bandwidth necessary for Al Jazeera to reach a far wider audience.

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