Matt J. Duffy :: Thoughts on Journalism, Culture, and Global Communication

Thoughts On Journalism, Culture, and Global Communication
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Dr. Matt J. Duffy teaches journalism, media ethics and international communication law at Kennesaw State University in Georgia, USA. He enjoys teaching the art of good journalism, a noble profession and powerful tool for social change. Duffy worked as a journalist for several news outlets including the Boston Herald and the Marietta Daily Journal.

Duffy's research focuses on journalism and media laws in the Middle East. Wolters Kluwer will publish the second edition of his"Media Laws in the United Arab Emirates" in 2016. He has published more than a dozen academic articles and writes occasionally for niche publications. Duffy will venture to Pakistan in May 2016 as part of the Fulbright Scholar program from the US State Department.

Since 2012, Duffy has served on the board of the Arab-United States Association for Communication Educators, an organization that aims to improve journalism in the Middle East. He also owns Oxford Editing that he started in 2007.

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Social media changes UAE landscape

posted on February 10, 2012 at 8:13 am

The last few paragraphs of my column in Gulf News today on the latest press freedom rankings which saw the UAE decline because of Internet filtering and other factors:

One overriding message from the Arab Spring is that technology has provided a powerful tool for the free flow of information. Old approaches towards regulation and control are still effective, but Facebook, Twitter and YouTube increasingly allow for messages to circumvent restrictions.

Indeed, some of the conversations once reserved for the blocked Al Hewar website are now taking place in plain view amid the UAE’s vibrant Twitter community.

Aided by new technology, the trend towards more communication and less ability to control appears to be inevitable. But, how governments choose to respond to this new reality is still up for debate.

Perhaps next year’s press freedom rankings will help us answer the question.

This column meshes nicely with my other published pieces on press freedom and freedom of expression in the UAE. Click on the links to read “Civl courts should handle defamation” and “UAE journalists need more legal protections.”

One comment

  • Mariam on 7 March 2012

    The idea of press freedom is interesting and may be the media in UAE will take a new destination. However, before anything the idea itself need to be well explained, and by that I mean that we have to ask ourselves why we need it and how it will serve our country, and the people.
    What I have seen until know who ever got their chance to speak they actually attacked people, for instance, the people who talked about UAE rulers in a bad way and said that they do not care about their people. What was that for, did they have anything from it, did they have their satisfaction? The problem is that we have people who want press freedom, but we do not have people that will do it in a productive way, that will affect the country and make it better.

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