Newland steps aside as editor of National

June 8, 2009

After just a year in the position, Martin Newland has stepped aside from his role as editor in chief of Abu Dhabi’s government led English language newspaper The National.

Martin Newland

Newland will stay with the newspaper’s owner, Abu Dhabi Media Company, and instead occupy the position of editorial director, where he will spearhead the expansion of the newspaper’s brand across the company’s range of platforms and services.

Former deputy editor Hassan Fattah will replace Newland in the editor in chief role.

Commenting on the promotions, Mohammed Khalaf Al Mazrouei, Chairman of Abu Dhabi Media Company said: “We are delighted that Martin will now focus his efforts on the next phase of brand expansion across our digital and broadcast spaces, enabling us to pioneer a new era of regionally relevant, on-demand content to rival the multiple platform approach of global news brands.”

Martin Newland said: “Launching The National has been a great accomplishment. My new role allows me to build on this success and to explore the brand potential in the new multi platform era. I am as excited by the new challenges today as I was when I first started.”

Abu Dhabi Media Company also confirmed that Bob Cowan is promoted to deputy editor at The National.

Arabic pop station to be launched by ADMC

April 26, 2009

A new addition to the UAE radio scene will go on air next month when the Abu Dhabi Media Company launches an Arabic pop station.

The station will be aimed at the UAE’s young Arabic-speaking population, Karim Sarkis, executive director of broadcast at ADMC, tells the latest edition of Campaign Middle East.

martin-newlandwAlso on the drawing board are plans to launch a radio station based on ADMC’s English-language daily newspaper, The National.

It would be the second broadcast spin-off from the broadsheet, following the introduction of the 30-minute TV news show, Inside The National, on ADMC’s Emarat Al Youm channel earlier this year.

Speaking on the first anniversary of The National, editor Martin Newland (pictured) highlighted the need for his newspaper to exploit the full resources and capabilities of ADMC in order to broaden its output across a variety of multimedia channels.

He said: “We’ve produced an operation that just at this moment happens to be incarnated in newsprint. I think we have a few years of grace when we can rely on press capacity and display advertising but it’s going to end. So you have to start thinking now, while your operation is still strong, about where you are going to go and put those things in place.”

National editor slams ‘drive-by journalism’

April 19, 2009

The editor of Abu Dhabi-based The National has hit out at a series of scornful articles about Dubai and the wider UAE which have recently appeared in the Western press.

Following scathing essays in UK broadsheets The Guardian and The Independent by Germaine Greer and Johann Hari, Martin Newland justifiably pointed out last week that “much of what has been written about Dubai and expats recently is complete rubbish and without context”. The former editor of The Daily Telegraph called it “drive-by journalism” – an apt description for the brief open-top bus tour upon which Greer based her assessment.

He said that while The National would not shy away from difficult issues, it would tackle them in a different way and within a different context.

There’s no doubt that Dubai has had a rough ride from the Western media in recent weeks but with more news organisations setting up offices in the UAE, can we expect all to take such a measured view as Newland suggests?

 Britain’s Sky News TV channel and The Daily Telegraph newspaper, and potentially the International Herald Tribune, have picked an interesting time to step up their presence in this part of the world. Is it too cynical to suggest crowds are gathering in hopes of witnessing the struggles of a country so recently emblematic of unparalleled ambition? Or are they genuinely interested in the region’s cultural and economic significance?