Oman TVs newly appointed chairman for Public Authority for Radio and TV, His Excellency Dr. Abdulla Al-Harrasi, is exploring the potential for a dedicated youth channel in the Sultanate. Dr. Al-Harrasi, who started his role at the media entity around five months ago, told BroadcastPro ME at CABSAT 2012 in Dubai that his vision for […]
Oman TVs newly appointed chairman for Public Authority for Radio and TV, His Excellency Dr. Abdulla Al-Harrasi, is exploring the potential for a dedicated youth channel in the Sultanate.
Dr. Al-Harrasi, who started his role at the media entity around five months ago, told BroadcastPro ME at CABSAT 2012 in Dubai that his vision for the network includes engaging with Omans large youth demographic, and the launch of a youth TV channel is just one idea presently being explored. While his remit is to mould the Sultanates media to keep pace with the developments in media and technology, it is also primarily to use the media to bond with the countrys population especially the new generation.
The plan is to look at launching a channel for the youth. There is an increasing gap between governments and the youth. The government of Oman is concerned that more should be done to address the youths issues. Our vision is to fill the gap between the media and the young people.
83% of Omanis are less than 40 years of age.
His Excellency hopes that his background in new and social media will drive forward Oman TVs aim to connect with this influential demographic.
I am an academic with a background in translation studies and English literature, but am also an ardent writer and blogger. Using my experience in social media, we intend to build on existing platforms and develop new policies on media.
Already, I use Facebook extensively to discuss issues related to the media and we receive hundreds of contributions from people in Oman.
I also use Twitter extensively to discuss and exchange ideas.
We are in the process of developing special programmes that can trace what is there in new media, what Omani journalists using new media are saying and then broadcast the content through traditional media channels, he added.
Dr. Al-Harrasi, who is in charge of the entire media authority that presently includes two TV channels and five radio channels, went on to say that the government of Oman is not adverse to change, although challenges exist.
Two major challenges I see are the issue of staff training and also quality control of our content and media products. I see significant gaps in these areas.
Dr. Al-Harrasi went on to add that structural changes are likely at Omani TV.
There will be changes in authority, with specialist advisors and experienced individuals brought in. We are attracting our journalists back to Oman those who had previously left Omani media. The government has also raised the ceiling of freedom of speech, allowing special TV talk shows discussing social issues to emerge.