Sunday, February 20, 2011

Role Of Muslim Media In North America

Quite sadly, most of the non Muslim media is either too naive or too prejudiced to appreciate the “final Divine message” elaborated in the noble Quran revealed for the benefit of the entire humankind. Indeed, Islam is a universal religion and is believed by twenty five percent of the total world population, yet it is discussed in the negative territory by some from the main stream media worldwide - leading to the birth of illegitimate public opinion about the Muslims. However, any misleading public opinion doesn’t really enjoy credibility. Certainly, biased journalism does nothing but poison the raw minds of many resulting in Islamophobia. Such a negative trend is injurious to the interests of Muslim culture and religion. In order to say or write about Islam or the Muslims, one has to be relevantly qualified to evaluate to reach a logical conclusion.

It’s been a bitter reality that the non Muslim media has been giving misjudgment without in-depth knowledge about the practicality of Islam. Main culprit here seems to be the inadequate presence of Muslim media in this arena. Despite the mischievous elements in the media, an honest reporting can play crucial role in the formation of logical public opinion.

Therefore, conveying only relevant and true information to the interested public is the responsibility of Muslim electronic and print media. Although, the code of ethics must be strictly followed by the “Muslim or non Muslim Print or Electronic media,” yet, some media individuals are not sincere enough when representing the Muslims for a number of reasons - including ignorance, discrimination, poor knowledge of Islam, or their total disability of interpreting Islamic teachings in the proper context.

Whether it is radio, television, newspaper or internet, the media has the capacity of connecting and bridging communities. Beyond doubt, internet is gold mine of accessibility enriching the minds positively or negatively - depending on what you really look for through face book, twitter, blogs, emails, and the list goes on and on. Muslim media should strive harder and harder to achieve the goal of nation building based on truth but avoiding the evil input.
On the contrary, when the media is biased and focused only on commercialization, it becomes irritating for intelligent audience. Ironically, most of the people become addicted to watching TV without realizing that time is money which they are wasting unnecessarily. The worried Muslims are really concerned about their obligation towards the society they live in. Yet, there are quite a few areas needing an immediate attention for introducing drastic changes so that the roadblocks are removed. This would let the deprived people move forward to live among non Muslims with equality.

Several communities of different ethnicities have their own media to safeguard their interests. Similarly, the Muslims are looking for a decent way out of the ongoing frustrating situation. They are becoming active more than ever and getting closer to helping the main stream media, which is absolutely a good beginning in the right direction.
And, it seems as if the journalistic monopoly is on the verge of gradual erosion sending signals to the Muslim community to serve the entire humanity by showing only the true pictures of events around them. Fortunately, the Muslim media of today has genuine encouragement to become more and more assertive with an improved degree of confidence. In other words they are more involved and getting closer to be competitive even in the commercially focused media market soon.

Better late than never, the Muslims are comfortable to troubleshoot the unfriendly status quo through their own electronic and print media. They are catching up gradually and hopefully would be able to get rid of Islamophobia among North American audience. Of course, only Muslim print or electronic media is in the best position to publish or broadcast information or other news pertaining to their own community. In other words, it is a challenge for the Muslim Media to present only the true image of Islam as a religion of peace, tolerance and justice.
In addition to Print media, a daily Muslim presence in the broadcast media and the internet would correct the anti Islam feelings among the non Muslim communities of North America and elsewhere. Once Muslim media is in full force on daily basis, the Muslim youth would definitely be encouraged to benefit, preserve and strengthen their Islamic identity. It is about time to build bridges of understanding with everyone around. Through such Muslim media, constructive interfaith dialogues can be aired too on regular basis.

Thankfully, several media people of integrity understand the essence of journalism. The Islamic Society of North America (ISNA) publishes “Islamic Horizons,” Islamic Circle of North America (ICNA) publishes “The Message” and there are many other publications by different mosques. Also, there are Monthly, Bi Weekly or Weekly News Papers and several other publications by Muslim Students' Associations.

A daily basis Muslim TV, radio broadcasting, and any publication in English language is the urgent need of the Muslim community in North America. Apparently, the mainstream media has been unable to address the issues of different communities equally.

The Muslim community deserves equality and justice, especially when it comes to the unattended or mishandled issues. In order to maintain Muslim identity, the Muslim electronic or print media have to play its role to protect the community from division. The Muslim media also need to do more for giving non-Muslims a positive view about Islam.

5 comments:

Anonymous said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Anonymous said...

No financial resources yet for the Muslim media to go for daily publishing or regular television programs.

NAS (UK) said...

Muslim or non Muslim------
media is media--- That is supposed to enjoy integrity.
True journalists never spread misinformation. They follow their code of ethics.

Iqra said...

Great post! I think Muslims have been realizing the need for media companies for a few years now, but the truth is that it takes time for establishment of quality tv programming or something like a magazine. It also takes a lot of financial resources as someone has commented.

However, the wise thing to do would be first to get involved with the media and then work on starting media companies. While it is competitive, like many other fields, there is still a lot of opportunity.

For this reason, I have chosen to work in magazines and tv and pray that one day there will be opportunities for us to lead our companies.

JOE said...

Good post!

Unlike controlled electronic or print media, the free media can give an organization the credibility that controlled media can't.
In other words, independent media is more motivating than the biased controlled media.

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