MTV and Nickelodeon in Arabic

8 11 2007

spongebobMTV Arabia will be launched November 17, and Nickelodeon Arabia will be launched in 2008. Both will include a combination of subtitled programs and local programming.

MTV Arabia has plans for an original Arabic series called “Hip Hop Na,” a reality show to find the best hip hop acts in seven Middle Eastern countries. The winner gets a record deal. I hope I will be able to find this on YouTube.

I think the Nickelodeon channel has a better shot at success than the MTV channel, because, as the article notes, the Middle East market is already flooded with Arabic-language music channels. And I’m not sure how many people share this impression, but in my mind MTV is so symbolically linked with American excess.

Then again, there appears to be a pretty serious dichotomy among Muslim and Middle Eastern youth – at the same time there’s a distrust of the American media, people also kind of eat it up.

Relevant statistic: about 60% of the population in the Middle East is under 25.

(Image from Asharq Alawsat)

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