San Francisco's Current TV Sold to Al-Jazeera

Categories: Media
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Currently Al-Jazeera
The San Francisco-based Current TV that chose to unleash Gavin Newsom on innocent viewers has taken a surprising turn. Al Gore officially sold his not-so-popular cable channel to Emir of Qatar-funded Arab news channel Al-Jazeera.

According to press reports, Gore was set to pocket $100 million with a 20 percent stake in the network after the sale was completed for $500 million on Wednesday. This means that averages Americans sitting on their sofas after work will soon be able to tune into Al-Jazeera America.

See also: Gavin Newsom's TV Debut Imminent: Flee While You Can

Al-Jazeera plans to add five to 10 new U.S. bureaus beyond the five it has now, with locations in New York City, Los Angeles, Miami, Chicago, and Washington, D.C. More than half of its content covered will reportedly be local, as in news covered from and about the United States. 

Current started in 2005, catering to young liberals and crusading against global warming before filling its airwaves full of talking heads and shows you've never heard of like Joy Behar: Say Anything, The Young Turks, Viewpoint, and the War Room, among others. And of course there's Gavin Newsom's show.

Time Warner wasn't thrilled about this purchase. The nation's largest cable company has made it more difficult for Al-Jazeera to expand, saying it was immediately dropping Current TV, as it has other low-rated channels. Derek Baine, a senior analyst with media and communications industry research firm SNL Kagan, told the Chron that this was "a big gamble for Al Jazeera."

It's certainly good news for all those laid-off reporters -- consider Al-Jaz the wave of the future. That's who's hiring now.




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