Al-Jazeera is a legitimate news-broadcasting network that is accepted around the world as the Arab news service. In some ways Al-Jazeera is similar to American news channels and in some ways they are better. Al-Jazeera has been criticized though by some American media for causing unrest in the Arab world by pandering to known terrorist Osama Bin Laden and presenting the news from an Arab viewpoint. The facts are that Al-Jazeera does cater to an Arab audience but that is only because their audience is Arabian and they have broadcast footage of Osama Bin Laden because they have the video to broadcast. Any bias they have toward Arab concerns is no different than the biases American media like CNN or Fox News have toward American interests. Al-Jazeera is almost completely uncensored by government. They are much more free than the American media that has to deal daily with the Federal Communications Commission and sometimes the Pentagon. Al-Jazeera may have laid the framework to becoming the international news source of the future. Although based in Qatar, they belong to no country but to Arab speaking peoples worldwide. This cross border support is the foundation to their no rules, no holds bard style of reporting.
Al-Jazeera is a twenty-four hour satellite news channel founded in 1996 and based in Qatar. It was originally funded by a 150 million dollar load from the Qatari government with the stipulation that it be financially independent by April 2001, a goal it failed to accomplish (Zednick). Al-Jazeera has been dubbed the "CNN of Arabia" and the "Arabic BBC" and has thirty-five bureaus scattered in cities across the globe including Europe and the United States (Emery, Salamon). Its television signal can be accessed from almost anywhere in the world. There are twenty-two Arab nations that run Al-Jazeera as the main news channel including such impoverished nations as Syria and Sudan where the vast majority of households do not have a television (Christabella, Campagna, BBC Monitoring International Reports, Zednick).