The New Arab at 7: Audio journalism that brings MENA stories
This article is one in a series to celebrate The New Arab's website relaunch. To read the others in the series click here.
More than a year ago, we launched The New Arab Voice podcast with the mission of giving our journalism an audio platform.
As part of a dedicated team from The New Arab, I proposed the idea of generating a podcast that aimed to diversify the way we report on key issues and communicate over stories from the MENA region and beyond. After much planning and strategizing, The New Arab Voice was born.
Audio journalism, and especially that of podcasts, has increased tremendously in popularity over the years, whereby listeners are transported from the comfort of their own homes to be engrossed in another realm.
Reporting on the Middle East and North Africa from London often feels like we are far away from those on the ground, but with the podcast, the voices of those living a myriad of realities can finally come to life. And so we chose to focus on inspiring and compelling long-form, in-depth storytelling from the region, rather than news bulletins or pundit talk shows.
"TNAV prides itself on countering stereotypes and orientalist clichés by giving the microphone directly to people on the ground to speak for themselves"
When I took up the job of producing The New Arab Voice, I had no idea that within two months I would be producing the entire show from my living room (thanks, pandemic!).
It took some intense re-adjustment and a lot of creativity to keep going under the circumstances that plagued the whole world, but TNAV survived, and is now stronger than ever. We have grown immensely as a team, and we are always striving to bring listeners the most important news from the region directly to your ears.
In our first episode of the second season of @TheNewArabVoice we will cover the latest escalations between Israel and Palestine. Stay tuned to hear our interview with Yousra Imran, author of Hijab and Red Lipstick.https://t.co/nYTbBmUxav— The New Arab (@The_NewArab) May 20, 2021
Our favourite episodes so far have touched upon wide-ranging issues such as the Arab Spring, women's rights, the LGBT+ community, migration, and racial justice. We believe that there needs to be a special focus on how people from the region are constantly striving for a better tomorrow, even though the difficulties they face are many.
As we look to the future, TNAV has a close eye on covering key issues - from the Climate crisis to the Arab-American community, and developments in Palestine.
"Our aim is to provide an inclusive platform where participants are able to reflect their own realities"
TNAV prides itself on countering stereotypes and orientalist clichés by giving the microphone directly to people on the ground to speak for themselves.
Our aim is to provide an inclusive platform where participants are able to reflect their own realities and experiences, as opposed to a top-down approach, where dictating narratives and editorial lines are centralised.
We want to be a platform for diversity, accuracy, and innovative reporting. We hope that someone, somewhere has benefitted from our coverage and that we can continue to grow our listenership.
Gaia Caramazza is a London-based multimedia journalist and staff writer for The New Arab
Follow her on Twitter @GaiaCaramazza
Check out the latest The New Arab Voice podcast episode here