Tuesday, June 03, 2008

Xerox Media and Mohammad Asif!

By John Cheeran
Journalism is great, and online journalism is greater.
One should call journalism of this age, and especially in the Middle East, Xerox Media, for its tendency to whore the news agency copies.
As wire agencies broke the news of Pakistan fast bowler Mohammad Asif arrested at Dubai airport on charges of possessing illegal drugs, what do the Dubai-based newspapers do? Just xerox the story and simply put By A Staff Reporter.
That’s what Khaleej Times’s online edition proudly did, grabbing the AFP story and giving some value addition by adding By a staff reporter!. (http://www.khaleejtimes.com/DisplayArticle.asp?xfile=data/theuae/2008/June/theuae_June87.xml&section=theuae)

Gulf News' online edition fell back on Reuters to run the item.
And news had to flow from Lahore; not from Dubai where things were happening.
Hard work, one must say!

Read the AFP copy here
Pakistan's cricketer Asif arrested in Dubai on drugs charges
2 hours ago
LAHORE, Pakistan (AFP) — Pakistani fast bowler Mohammad Asif has been arrested at Dubai airport on charges of possessing illegal drugs, cricket officials said Tuesday.
The 25-year-old Asif was seized while returning home from India after featuring in a domestic event that ended on Sunday, a Pakistan Cricket Board official said on condition of anonymity.
"Yes, we can confirm about Asif's arrest. He was stopped at Dubai airport on charges of carrying opium and was supposed to be brought before the magistrate on Tuesday," the official said.
The PCB would brief the media about the situation later on Tuesday, he said.
"We have few details so we are gathering more and as soon as we get them we will brief the media. As far as we know he flew out of Bombay on Sunday morning and was detained at Dubai airport," said the official.
PCB human resources director Nadeem Akram is in Dubai and has also hired a lawyer to assist Asif, the official said.
Reports from Dubai said the local police have conducted several tests on Asif and would bring him before the magistrate later Tuesday.
The arrest is just the latest controversy to hit Pakistan's troubled cricket team over the past two years.
Asif was banned for one year after he tested positive for the steroid nandrolone in October 2006. Fellow paceman Shoaib Akhtar was banned for two years on the same charge.
The bans were however lifted on appeal two months later.
Akhtar meanwhile is appealing a lifetime ban imposed in April for repeated disciplinary problems.

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