Shift or Stasis| The Business Push and Audience Pull in Arab Entertainment Television

Joe F. Khalil


This article seeks to identify complex dynamics in Arab media. It argues that Arab entertainment television is subject to twin processes of “business push” and “local audience pull.” It also illustrates how multiple power structures hinder or facilitate these processes. Using an overview of the past five years in Arab entertainment television, the article analyzes transformative practices that illustrate key fractures in global media codistribution, format television, and media investments, as well as signs of the reassertion of national broadcasters and the impact of the YouTube phenomenon. The article argues for investigating the push/pull vectors that foster links and interactions more than actors and structures. This approach is required to better understand current global media permutations.


Arab, television, global media, localization, format TV, entertainment, audiences, YouTube

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