Tuesday, June 14, 2005

Restricted blog; BBC not allowed!

Ten days ago I was contacted by someone called Sarah Brown from the BBC; she had explained to me their team's desire to interview me via phone and e mail as part of a program they were producing. The program was named "One Day in Iraq" which I thought would really represent a day in Iraq.

So, after several e mails were exchanged to confirm a date and time for the interview, they asked me to do another interview for a side program about Iraqi blogs.

On the 7th of June I received a phone call from them and we started doing the interview. The line was bad so we had to try several times before we were able to get a good line.
I was asked about what was my day like and I told them the story of that day from the time I woke up at 7am till the moment I picked up the phone. As a matter of fact, my day wasn't a special one; I took the bus to central Baghdad then changed buses to get to the clinic where I work at in a southern suburb of Baghdad then after doing the usual daily work at the clinic I went with 2 of my friends and Mohammed to have drinks and lunch in one of our favorite restaurants.
Boring day, right?

Later I went home, had a good nap then woke up to check on my e mails and made my daily blog reading until the phone rang.
There were some other questions about my blogging habits (how often I update the blog? How can I access the web? What time I usually use for blogging?...etc) and there were questions about the general situation in Baghdad; fuel, electricity and security and also there were other questions about the cost of items involved in daily household and people's wages that I answered in a previous e mail.

The name "One Day in Iraq" seemed interesting to me and I thought that this time the BBC was really trying to get the news from the people who live here but obviously that wasn't the case as it now appears that they couldn't get rid of their selective biased attitude in choosing the news they want to show.

As I said yesterday, I was out of town for a few days so I couldn't follow up the story until yesterday and when I did I found that my story was not there; it was for some reason ignored or omitted from the part of the show that talked about blogs and media. Instead I found two stories where other two bloggers where featured; one of them was a teenage Iraqi girl who was pissed off because she couldn't read French and the other one was actually in the States on June 7!!

Obviously the BBC found my day too boring to be reported especially when it comes from an Iraqi in Baghdad so they chose to turn 180 degrees and report a comment from someone stationed 10,000 miles away from Baghdad to get the a good view about "One Day in Iraq"!

No offense to the bloggers who participated in the show as they have the right to say whatever they like and to speak to whomever they like but I feel very disappointed by what the involved BBC staff did.

Moreover, I sent the BBC person who contacted me an e mail at an earlier time asking them to send me the links that lead to the story where my interview was supposed to be found but guess what? I got no response from them at all and they didn't even send a message to say "sorry but we couldn’t use your story and here is why”.

And this is so impolite especially after I was answering 4 or 5 e mails a day to them when they were preparing for their show.
Maybe they were expecting me to lie to them and make my day less boring and more appealing to them by talking about a car bomb or adding some whining to have my comments posted on their website but you know what? I don't care because I told the truth which they apparently don't like to hear and that's their problem now.
I guess that I was too hopeful to have expected much from networks like the BBC that are so drowned in their bias.

1 comment:

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