Advanced Television

Al Jazeera soccer jamming – “a prank”

October 12, 2010


The soccer jamming squabble between Qatar’s Al Jazeera Sports and Jordanian broadcasting authorities has already stretched diplomatic relations between the two regions. Comments have bounced back and forth between the two nations, and there seems to be no doubt that the jamming occurred from within Jordanian territory.

Now a local newspaper has suggested that the incidents, which included jamming the FIFA World Cup final, was a “prank”. The report, quoted by BBC Monitoring from a story in Amman-based Al-Ra’y newspaper, said: “Jordan does not have any interest in ruining Al-Jazeera’s major deal. Also, Jordanians have a media policy that usually stands far above plunging into trivial matters and quarrels unless they reach an unsupportable level. Then how could such a stable policy allow the country’s entry into childish behaviour such as the one Al-Jazeera claimed or leaked to the British Guardian [newspaper]?”

“The question is related to the rights of millions of people who had bought a service from Al-Jazeera that was so rotten it made them prefer to view the matches through the Internet. Instead of compensation that would have been possible through more than one way, such as extending the validity of the World Cup cards to include other soccer occasions as a simple appeasement, Al-Jazeera requested all its viewers to become satellite technicians and work on understanding the mysteries of guidelines to ensure quiet viewing of matches. The request was so repetitive that it began looking like a game itself: As soon as a good channel is found, it is jammed and the game is then repeated anew.”

“Let us assume that Al-Jazeera is not targeting Jordan and that it does not mean to state or hint that an official Jordanian entity was behind the jamming, but following a reasonable professional, and scientific study it found that the source of the jamming had come from Jordan and that the jammer was merely a young amateur of technology, would that not amount to a scandal by all standards?,” asked the newspaper.

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