Tag Archives | journalism

BBC Pop UP Published Their First Video From Lebanon

Remember when I told you that the BBC Pop Up team are in Lebanon for this month? Well, they published their first video and it’s about homosexuals in the country.

Over the last few years, some judges issued rulings in favor of gay people due to the fact that you simply cannot define what sexual acts really contradict “the laws of nature”, so the report discusses if this is going to offer a better future for the LGBT community in Lebanon.

P.S: The video contains some sexual content.


BBC Pop Up Are Coming to Beirut And Want to Hear Your Stories!

BBC Pop Up is BBC’s mobile bureau, it’s a small team that travels to different cities one month at a time to make documentaries.

They have previously been to several places like Russia and India and made some pretty interesting videos. The way they get inspired to make their stories however is different than other show, instead of deciding by themselves what to report on, they rely on suggestions submitted by the inhabitants of the place they’re visiting or other people who simply want to know more about a certain topic related the country they’re in.

Throughout the month of February, BBC Pop Up announced on their twitter account that they will be flying to Beirut, and in a country like ours with countless problems and so many awesome things at the same time, I bet they will have a quite busy month! From the refugee crisis, to waste management, messed up transportation system, our food culture, and cool places off the beaten track like little Armenia (Bourj Hammoud) and cities like Tripoli and Saida… there’s just so much to talk about.

You can submit your ideas to BBC Pop Up through their website or write to them on bbcpopup@bbc.co.uk.



Assafir Newspaper Printed Its Final Issue

2016 is over and so is unfortunately the paper print of Assafir daily. The last issue was printed on the last day of 2016 with an editorial titled “The nation without Assafir”.

It was originally planned for the newspaper to stop operating in March 2016 due to financial difficulties but it continued publishing for a few more months after getting some support. Talal Salman, its Chief Editor, blamed the closure on the crisis currently affecting all media outlets (falling sales and decrease in advertising), but in fact I believe it is their failure to adapt to changing times that should be blamed.

Advertisers are currently spending more on digital channels, and Chief Editors can no longer expect their newspapers to survive unless they accept to adapt and provide good content through their websites, social media, apps and even blogs.

I personally used to follow some of Assafir’s editors and will definitely miss reading their articles, so I really hope they keep publishing on some online platform.


Israel is Searching for a Porn Star to Topple Mia Khalifa

mia khalifa

How one earth can anyone believe something such as this post’s title?!

The Israeli Daily, a satire news site, published this article on how the Israeli Minister of Economy is now concerned about Mia Khalifa being ranked number one on Porn Hub and wants to find an Israeli star to outshine Mia.

Speaking to The Israeli Daily a spokesman for Bennett’s office stated, “having seen this travesty the minister is well aware of the economic damage that could be caused by people thinking that the hottest chicks come from Lebanon. Everybody knows the sweetest bodies in the Levant are to be found in Israel and that Tel Aviv is party central here in the region,” he continued.

In order to reinforce this message the minister is launching a search for an Israeli star to rival Khalifa. “We are looking for a young professional who can outdo this poor Lebanese imitation,” the spokesman stated. “Ideally they will be in the IDF because chicks with guns are always hot. They should also be extremely flexible and have an all over tan,” he added. Source

Unsurprisingly, several Lebanese news sites took the whole thing seriously and started copying the article!

Talk about professional journalism!


How low can Al-Jadeed TV get?

So Bahaa El Dine Hariri got married to a Saudi lady last week, and as expected, many TV stations had to report the news which was quite normal.

However, when it came to Al Jadeed, they introduced Bahaa El Dine in the most unprofessional way. While the man is a known billionaire and owns a property development and investment group, Al Jadeed decided that he’s instead known for a silly statement he made during his most vulnerable moment, the funeral of his assassinated father!

I totally understand the TV station might be in disagreement with the Hariri’s, but that was quite low of them…


The valet parking mafia in Downtown Beirut

Check out this special report prepared by Rami El-Amine from Al-Jadeed about the valet parkers in Downtown Beirut and how they overpower the parking meter attendants in the area.

Those people take your car and park it anywhere in Downtown Beirut and they never mind the parking meter attendant since those usually never dare to fine a car with a valet parking ticket on it, and don’t ask why! And if a car ever got fined, the valet parker just throws away the fine and hand you the car as if nothing happened. But you of course end up paying it double time at the mecanique.



If this report is not enough reason for you to stop using the valet parking service then I don’t know what is, I know it’s impossible sometimes, but I personally always try to park my car by myself even if I had to walk for a few minutes to reach my destination.

The fourth part of this report is due tonight by the way.


Here’s the fourth and last part of the report.


Boobs, Botox and the Babes of Beirut

… that was actually the title of a recent article at the Huffington Post by David J Constable.

I visited a nightclub one evening to witness the dolls and their dates myself. In Taïga Sky, a rooftop nightclub in Batroun (30 miles from Beirut) everyone is smoking, bouncing on the spot and eyeing each other up, not in a complimentary way but diamond gazes of fierce competitorship. The top trump card here is a tan and a good set of pins, and in that respect it’s no different from the techno cattle clubs in the UK, however in Lebanon the women look like Cleopatra, with a dark natural beauty beyond anything Max Factor can supply and into the billion dollar industry of plastic surgery. Their partners are a mixture of bodybuilders in Lycra t-shirts or fat, pony-tailed Arabic mafiosi. It’s as captivating as it is frightening.

Back in Beirut, in the VIP corner of Le Capitole, another five-star rooftop bar, I see the wives and girlfriends of artists. They must be the better-halves of surgeons as surely no one can afford to spend that much of their own cash on reconstructive surgery and blow-me-up operations. There are benefits to marrying/dating/having sex with a plastic surgeon, as these well-ironed and unwrinkled faces suggest to me that they don’t reach the age limit of nightclub entry, such is their youthful appearance, bronzed with potions and powders.

You can read the rest of the article here.

It’s amazing how some foreign journalists are willing to judge the whole Lebanese society based on a few visits to some of the country’s posh bars and clubs!


LBCI falls victim to the Facebook Inshallah button joke

You probably have heard in the last few days the joke about a new button being unveiled by Facebook to the Arabic market to allow the users in the region to respond with “Inshallah” to event invitation they receive. The joke was started by a parody website The Pan-Arabia Enquirer, and unfortunately the LBCI website fell for it! Check the article they posted here. (I expect them to delete it soon)

Following the opening of its office in Dubai, Facebook has revealed the first of what it claims will be many alterations to the social media site tailored to the local Arabic market. As of next week, users across the Middle East and North Africa will have to opportunity to respond with ‘Insha’Allah’ to an event invitation, along with the usual ‘Join’, ‘Maybe’ and ‘Decline’.

“This was the result of several focus groups across the region,” said Facebook Arabia’s Regional Solutions Manager, Majid Johnson. “Adding an ‘Insha’Allah’ button for Facebook events was by far and away the most popular request.”

Facebook Arabia also announced plans to introduce a ‘Platinum Upgrade’ specifically for GCC markets.

“This was another big winner in our focus groups,” claimed Johnson. “Facebook Platinum is going to be our premium option for the more exclusive social media user. It’s going to come with a significant signing on fee, but will offer five-star services, such as a bespoke wall and 24-hour status concierge facility, along with space for just 50 members at one time.”

Facebook Platinum is expected to launch this November.

Absolutely priceless!

Thank you @tinkeyeh


The article was removed from LBCI’s website.


Samir Kassir Award open to Israeli journalists

The issue has been raised on the Tayyar.org website two days ago. As you can see in the snapshot below taken from the regulations page, Samir Kassir’s contest is open to journalists in several countries including Israel!

Samir Kassir Award

I have no idea what journalists from Israel have to do with this contest, and I am surprised that until today those who are responsible of it still have not fixed it or even provided an explanation. Oh and please don’t blame it on a copy paste mistake!


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