BBC Arabic celebrates 80 years of broadcasting
It was launched as a radio service on 3 January 1938 and has grown to become an award-winning multimedia service, available on TV, radio, online and via mobile handheld devices, 24-hours a day, seven days a week. BBC Arabic currently has a weekly reach of 43 million people.
On Monday 29 January at 4pm GMT a special edition of Talking Point, on TV, radio and online, will discuss what the role of radio is in the era of tech and social media developments. Listeners can give their opinions and share their experiences through Talking Point’s social media pages or by calling in. Details on how to get involved and how to listen are here: http://www.bbc.com/arabic/interactivity
And at 7pm GMT on Monday 29 January, a special two-hour radio programme will be broadcast live from the iconic Bush House (the home of BBC Arabic for many years). This can be heard live online here and listeners around the world can share their memories of BBC Arabic and the topics discussed using #BBCArabic80 on social media.
The programme will feature many great names and expert voices from the past and current staff of BBC Arabic, including Sami Haddad, Munir Obied and Salwa Al Jarrah. Topics will include the history and evolution of BBC Arabic: from radio, through TV and online and what role radio will play in the future. There will also be a chance to hear from some of the latest new faces to join BBC Arabic and from audience members across the world who will share their stories.
Further programming to celebrate this milestone in broadcasting will appear in schedules throughout the year.
BBC Arabic maintains unique qualities which have led to its continued success, covering political, social, and cultural issues and bringing impartial, balanced and accurate news that matters to its diverse audiences in the Middle East, North Africa and worldwide.
BBC Arabic has continued to innovate and create special content for younger and female audiences. In the past year, new series such as Trending, BBC Xtra TV, and new radio programmes for the Gulf and North Africa have been launched and digital-first series such as Teenagers and Shame have focused on topics not covered by other media in the region.
The BBC Arabic Festival will also return this April for its fourth year.