Al-Jazeera ("The [Arabian] Peninsula" in Arabic, more accurately transliterated as "Al Jazira") is a commercial television news provider specializing in the Arab world. It is based in Doha, Qatar, with the Qatari royal family as the dominant shareholder; although operating autonomously, the channel usually refrains from criticism of its host state. Broadcasting in Arabic commenced in 1996, and in English in 2006.
Just as CNN introduced a new business model of 24-hour news, al-Jazeera has focused on a new business model of becoming a dominant, non-Western news provider specializing in a region. It has become the leading provider of Arabic-language news, but is also the dominant provider of English-language news in its region through its sister channel, Al-Jazeera English. Despite some initial hostility (mostly from the US) Al-Jazeera English is increasingly being accepted as a global player, reaching (and arguably even exceeding) the standards of established broadcasters such as the BBC and CNN. Almost without exception, Al-Jazeera is disliked by Arab governments and frequently has been banned from operating (inter alia, in Bahrain, Kuwait, Egypt, Morocco, Iraq) for limited periods of time.
Al-Jazeera English features a number of presenters formerly seen on rival international networks. From BBC World News are Anita McNaught, Barnaby Phillips, Veronica Pedrosa, Stephen Cole, Rageh Omaar, Jacky Rowland and weatherman Everton Fox. It has also recruited British journalist David Frost, formerly with the BBC; former CNN producer James Wright; Riz Khan—like Pedrosa, a former anchor at CNN International; and Dave Marash, a former correspondent for ABC News' Nightline.
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