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U.S. wants its MTV to get message out in Arab world.
November 19, 2001 8:15 AM   Subscribe

U.S. wants its MTV to get message out in Arab world. Is this a good way to "encourage dialogue" between U.S. and Middle East youths, as the article suggests, or just antoher example of American pop-cultural imperialism?
posted by gazingus (26 comments total)

 
I would have to say the latter.

Then again, watching Brittney Spears just might get them to mellow out some, no?
posted by adampsyche at 8:25 AM on November 19, 2001


Same article, without ads.
posted by panopticon at 8:35 AM on November 19, 2001


watching a 16 year old strip tease (was she, brittney, 16 or 14 when she started? anyway...) her way to the top in front of all people, men, women, children...probably got 'them' riled up (upset at the values of the american people) in the first place. don't ya think?
posted by m2bcubed at 8:36 AM on November 19, 2001


i cant of a single thing to piss off the rest of the world then to do this...this...AHHHH
posted by clavdivs at 8:37 AM on November 19, 2001


what if they stuck to re-runs of 120 minutes from when it was good music?
posted by th3ph17 at 8:39 AM on November 19, 2001


Option 2, definitely.

I don't think even Britney's boobs can change many a youth Arab's mind about the perception of America -which we all know which is- they have been taught through all of their life years. Or, as a popular Latinamerican saying goes, can "a couple of breasts pull more than a couple of trucks?"
posted by betobeto at 8:46 AM on November 19, 2001


So MTV is talking about "[encouraging] dialogue between MTV viewers in U.S. and those in Middle Eastern and other predominately Muslim markets." Looking at its record so far, its post-Sept 11 news programming has focused on anti-Muslim/Arab discrimination and the erosion of civil liberties...not exactly jingoistic stuff.

Besides the first paragraph, which suggests that Washington wants MTV to spread some unspecified message, where do you guys get propaganda?
posted by lbergstr at 8:50 AM on November 19, 2001


How about withdrawing support for dictatorships, pressuring the Isrealis to end their occupation or increasing aid and investment? How about a foriegn policy of supporting democracy in the region instead of pawns to be shuffled in America's own self-interest? That might win 'em over.
posted by dydecker at 8:54 AM on November 19, 2001


I knew it was only a matter of time before we dropped the Britney Bomb...
posted by spilon at 8:56 AM on November 19, 2001


You know, it would most likely rile 'them' up. 'Them' being Arab leaders and citizens. It was just a thought.

I seriously doubt there is a single thing that MTV could do to be constructive in this situation. Except maybe distract young people away from current events (end sarcasm).
posted by adampsyche at 8:59 AM on November 19, 2001


it would most likely rile them up...

What, exactly? They're not talking about playing a continuous mix of the Star-Spangled Banner with teen T&A videos...as far as I can tell they're talking about showing man-on-the-street interviews with kids from different countries. If you guys think this is (a) propaganda and/or (b) likely to piss people off, you're going to have to work a little harder...
posted by lbergstr at 9:06 AM on November 19, 2001


no demo is more crucial to the future of Islamic-Western relations than the 15-30 age group. That's where MTV comes in.

I find fault with the assumption that MTV represents that age group.
posted by adampsyche at 9:12 AM on November 19, 2001


it would most likely rile them up...

i was responding to the post before mine. about watching brittney.

(she is not the greatest singer...it would upset me to have to hear her too... as well as having her show off her boobs,( perhaps it's jealousy on my part :)), but if they are so traditional and we show her boobs, aren't we being a little...i don't know...horrible?)
posted by m2bcubed at 9:12 AM on November 19, 2001


Is this a good way to "encourage dialogue" between U.S. and Middle East youths...or just another example of American pop-cultural imperialism?

It can be both.

Having said that, MTV is pure crap. < rant>The whole concept of "music videos" is repulsive and serves only to destroy the auditory experience, the sheer mental joy that comes from hearing fresh, energetic music and *seeing* it in your mind.< /rant>
posted by davidmsc at 9:13 AM on November 19, 2001


What a joke. The only reason MTV wants this is so they can get a toehold into new markets. Remember when they played the names of hate crime victims? You'll notice they didn't stop playing eminem(sp?) videos.

They've never done anything that didn't have dollars at the bottom.
posted by sonofsamiam at 9:13 AM on November 19, 2001


Oops, sorry m2b, I was responding to adam. I agree...Britney's probably not our best ambassador...but then MTV != Britney.
posted by lbergstr at 9:14 AM on November 19, 2001


adampsyche, i agree that the age group is incorrect...at least for mtv, i would say the age group is more, i don't know..10 to 22? mtv2 is alright though.
posted by m2bcubed at 9:15 AM on November 19, 2001


They've never done anything that didn't have dollars at the bottom.

Rock the Vote?
posted by lbergstr at 9:15 AM on November 19, 2001


Sorry, forgot my enclosing facetiousness tags around my statement.

MTV is a business, and they are seeking to do what businesses do, make money. Too bad that they are looked to for social responsibility and ambassadorship.
posted by adampsyche at 9:19 AM on November 19, 2001


>hearing fresh, energetic music

i personally like to check out the mtv from other countries, i.e. mtv india and the middle east one as well. i do hear very cool music which to them is pop i suppose, but to me is novel.


the shows are fluffy though, no conversations with the kids there, too upbeat, and western.
posted by m2bcubed at 9:43 AM on November 19, 2001


many would argue it would be both 1) and 2). i must concur that the music output of mtv is in general tepid.
BUT, just think how much impact a programme like 'jackass' would have.
Would johnny knoxville be able to bridge that cultural gap?
posted by asok at 9:53 AM on November 19, 2001


I can't claim to be the biggest expert in the world, but I have travelled to Lebanon, Jordan, Turkey, Egypt, Morocco, and Tunisia, and for the most part many of the young people I met liked Americans and generally American culture. It's the American government and their policies that are unpopular, and I don't think MTV will have much of an impact there.
posted by cell divide at 9:59 AM on November 19, 2001


Some of you may remember last year's New York Times article (link is to mirrored version) about Madonna, Britney, et.al. circulating on bootlegs in Iran.
posted by gimonca at 10:04 AM on November 19, 2001


i hope it's an example of american imperialism. there isn't enough of that, these days.
and please let brittany be involved.........let's face it, we all want to see those boobs (even me, and i'm queer as a three dollar bill).
oh, and while we're at it, maybe we can convert them to an authentic religion, like christianity. they will thank us later.
posted by billybob at 11:14 AM on November 19, 2001


Remember when they played the names of hate crime victims? You'll notice they didn't stop playing eminem(sp?) videos.
sonofsamiam, you crack me up. They didn't stop playing that other badass, Vanilla Ice, either. Spook!
posted by holloway at 12:20 PM on November 19, 2001


MTV wants more viewers! The US Government is well-aware that big, flashy productions win hearts and minds. There is nothing new in any of this.
posted by skinsuit at 5:02 PM on November 19, 2001


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