Saturday, 16 August 2008

Starting a magazine in Dubai

A question from curious george:

If someone wanted to start a mag in dxb how should they go about doing that and if ITPs practices are norm (lying, scamming, cheating, etc), could an honest mag ever have a chance?

Any advice/answers welcome.


Anonymous said...

the only magazine that could be launched that would successfully cut across this country's impossible demographics would be a porn mag. anything else is futile.

good luck.

Anonymous said...

There was 1 noticeable launch a few months ago IQ magazine. I belive the holding company ENG had no previous titles and this was completely new for them.Thats gone down amazingly well in my office. I think you would have to have a good backer and find a gap in the market, but in honesty I think everyone is getting tired of ITPs constant lying about figures and the table is about to turn with some of the bigger agencies only booking into audited titles in 2009. So a transparent approach is sure to be welcomed

Anonymous said...

Hopefully better transparency will end the insanity of the habibi mafia's ridiculous publishing ventures. There's at least one mag where the website claims a print run of 73,000 but it's actually only 2,000.

Anonymous said...

Which one of Crap Publishing International's titles is that?

Anonymous said...

CPI - mag launches, or mag closures?

Anonymous said...

there are gaps in the market that need to be filled. Actually, most gaps already filled by Motivate and ITP require more honest competition to push the editorial standards and advertising standards as a whole upwards.

However, leaving aside the worries of maintaining circulation figures and honest reporting on print runs, to start a magazine one need not a new or fresh idea, one needs powerful connections with the media agencies and their huge print advertising budgets.

One also needs to establish a brand via this title they would start printing. A strong brand and a strong set of networks and contacts would possibly carry a publication to success after 18 months to 20 months of constant investment of capital.

The agencies are notoriously difficult to break into and having said that, a lebanese sales person with a solid rolodex of contacts, easy command of english, french, and all things lebanese would be the place to start with.

Other than that, there is no such thing as honesty in publishing.

The business model does not allow for it and considering the advertising climate in the middle east, we are very very far from achieving anything remotely respectful of your or my intelligence levels. However, with this being the case for the past 15 or 20 years, I doubt that the majority of people here want anything else other than doped up versions of the original titles that are imported here.

So don't go looking for honesty and make it your number one priority. Go looking for entertainment and your bottom line. If you have half a million dirhams to invest over a year and in report honestly on a print run of 5000 copies a month, then knock yourself out.

Anonymous said...

Given all the recent government moves against corruption surely someone could report ITP and other publishers for their alleged phony circulation figures? The evidence against them certainly makes them worthy of investigation - who and where is the relevant govt body to report them to?

Anonymous said...

Good posting from 08:41 which pretty much hits the mark.

However Dubai being what Dubai is, I have seen that it's cheaper to set up a magazine than to do the actual market research. Hence the many mags that have folded over the years due to lack of investment/advertising or the sheer blind vanity of a publisher who doesn't address his audience.

So we've seen a rush of watered down clones into the market (er, Gay and Lesbian section in TO Dubai anyone?) or a head to head battle of the big boys in the entertainment, lifestyle (how I fucking hate that word), women's sector – all pretty much producing the same guff as each other.

Niche magazines, done well, would be a welcome addition to the mix, but niche implies a small readership which the adLebs couldn't understand nor sell-in to their over-egoed clients.

And anyway the majors would probably bury you with a carbon copy, filled with cross-sold two for one ad deals across their stable.

You will need very deep pockets, a pachyderm skin, the emotional integrity of Atilla the Hun, the accounting skills of Nick Leason and will soon develop a penchant for solitary drinking of neat vodka in darkened rooms.

Or you could just give the whole lot to charity...

Anonymous said...

8.41 and 15.57 what a useless couple of postings. if you have nothing positive to say, why don't you go back to wherever you were a failure in, before you came here? Nobody wants losers like you here.

Anonymous said...

yeah... u should check out what ENG did. it was a pretty decent effort on their part for both IQ and Insider.

curios george said...

thanx everyone for your input, much appreciated. let's now see who has the money, the guts and the connections to start something new

Anonymous said...

so, what happened to itpdirt?

Anonymous said...

anon @ 2030 - you really are a completely thick cunt aren't you?

Those two posters gave a really good analysis and you just seem to lack the most basic form of intelligence so it goes straight over your pudgy little head.

It's people like you who make the Dubai media look like a total joke; you're so thin-skinned and such a dwarf on every level you can't comprehend for one moment that not everything is right in your shitty little business in your 3rd rate city.

You attempt to block all debate yet offer nothing at all except sneering sycophancy.

What a sad and pathetic brown-nosing tosser you are.

Anonymous said...

The key thing here to remember is... English publications in an Arabic region are always going to be weak.

The double standards and quality issues are there purely cos of language.

Emarat Al Youm is arguably more controversial than 7days ever was, and Sharjah Radio and Noor FM frequently hosts talk shows and dissenters about everything in the UAE.

If there is a niche for a new magazine, then it is in a quality Arabic language magazine, in the stable of Emarat Al Youm - AMG therefore has the best chance of success.

Check the circulations of Zahrat Al Khaleej, Sayidati, Jameela, or Arabian Business Arabic vs. Arabian Business English.

Anonymous said...

Insider is truly awful, the cover lines alone are terrible. IQ is not much better. I guess if you have spent the last 8 years working in Dubai, you probably will get institutionalised.

Anonymous said...

Insider better than the regional Hello or OK (not hard), but not as good as Ahlan or Grazia.
IQ better than any mag here I can think of. Good efforts for new launches, both.

Anonymous said...

Well said Neil.

Anonymous said...

More Gulf News genius:

UAE gaming console market posts sales of 4.45m units worth Dh17.78m

By Naushad K. Cherrayil, Senior Sub-Editor
Published: August 16, 2008, 23:51

Dubai: The UAE gaming console market reported sales of 4.45 million units worth Dh17.78 million from January to May this year, according to Jacky's Electronics.

So they sold a console for every person in the country, at an average price of Dh3.50?

If anyone knows where I can get one of these amazing one-dollar Xboxes, let me know...

Does anyone edit this paper? Apart from the "senior sub editor" who "wrote" this press release?

Anonymous said...

Neil who? Davies?

Anonymous said...

That's not what they cost, only what they're worth!

Anonymous said...

is the person who wrote this happy, do you think?

is he loved? could he not benefit from a hug from a loving mother?

"It's people like you who make the Dubai media look like a total joke; you're so thin-skinned and such a dwarf on every level you can't comprehend for one moment that not everything is right in your shitty little business in your 3rd rate city.

You attempt to block all debate yet offer nothing at all except sneering sycophancy.

What a sad and pathetic brown-nosing tosser you are."

Anonymous said...

sorry, inside and iq aren't working. they're carrying virtually no paid advertising and unless they can crack some biz fast, they'll simply burn through money. why in the world petch thought dubai needed a WEEKLY men's magazine and yet ANOTHER celeb title is the only quesion worth pondering when it comes to these fabbo launches.

Anonymous said...

Is the person who wrote this happy? etc etc etc blah blah blah

"8.41 and 15.57 what a useless couple of postings. if you have nothing positive to say, why don't you go back to wherever you were a failure in, before you came here? Nobody wants losers like you here."

Anonymous said...

You know it's silly season when...

Gulf News writes about a website for women that has been around for six years, and puts it on page 1.


Anonymous said...

Sorry to sound negative, but there are far too many free mags and free newspapers out here, no reader loyalty at all, look at Time Out, claims 30,000 + per week, and generally sells 2- 3,000 copies, tops. Consumers don't buy mags in this region, therefore, you will make no money from copy sales, and have to rely on advertising, which unless you set up a nice 'AVR deal' with corrupt ad agencies, is not going to happen. Set up a website instead. ENG are making very little ad revenue at the moment, and their titles are carrying loads of freebies. Be interesting to see how long they continue...

Anonymous said...

I don't think anyone would mind that ITP et al just being contract publishers, creating glorified freesheets.

But, because of the brand names of things like "Time Out" and a couple of nice cars in the carpark, they think they are more than this.

In a more mature market context they would be tiny small fishes.

So, ultimately, isn't this just ACE Promotions, Norwich, but set in a Dubai context?

Anonymous said...

So Neil Davies is one of the voices from ITP posting here?

Anonymous said...

So if those are the numbers Time Out are producing (consider its visibility at cash tills/check outs) have a guess what the other well known mags are doing (with a fraction of the visibility) - Whats On, OK, Hello etc

Anonymous said...

You know this would be quite a story if Time Out in London know that ITP are behaving in this way. Could really damage the brand. Does anyone have any cast-iron evidence? I read a lot of stuff on the short-lived ITP Dirt (even Secret Dubai posted about witnessing some strange goings-on) that really seemed to suggest something clearly ain't right.

Anonymous said...

Perhaps you should take a look at the BPA website to see how many copies are sold on publications like What's On, OK and Hello. If limited visibility is a claim then why are the single copy sales of some of these titles so good? Perhaps some good titles don't need to be positioned at a check out point to be picked up as an impulse purchase but are rather bought for their content by loyal readers....

Anonymous said...

BPA has been checked and none of the ITP titles have filed figures for the whole of 2008; many are forfeit (failed to file any figures ever) and the Time Out Dubai audited figure on BPA is almost 5% less than the one claimed on the ITP website.

Quite damning stuff.

Anonymous said...

Gosh this really would be quite story in London...

Do anyone have any cast-iron proof...?

So typical of journalists in the Middle East.

Can someone please send me a press release for this story...?

Of course it is not true.

If you want to see how many copies of Time Out Dubai are sold all you need to do is look at the BPA web site presuming that is not beyond your skills.

Just in case it is - I will put you out of your sad misery.

For July to Dec 2007, the average copy sales were 5,955.

i.e. nowhere near the figure quoted by someone else here.

This blog is really plumbing new depths of ignorance and stupidity.

Anonymous said...

Looking at Whats Gone's jan to june 2007 audit, the only one available on the BPA web site, it shows that their copy sales are 2,618.

And just to fill in the gaps for the more mentally challenged reading this site, please note that is monthly.

Not weekly.

Anonymous said...

I see that we continue to witness excellence in journalism, typical of this region.

"BPA checked..."

Er I think you meant to say that you checked the BPA web site.

Check with the BPA.

Please feel free to check with the BPA themselves to clarify what BPA member titles in the Middle East have been filed for Jan to Jun 08.

Even a complete moron would be able to see that there are very few audits that have been completed for 2008 and available on their web site.

Stuart Wilkinson
BPA Worldwide
55 Russell Square
London, WC1B 4HP

Phone: +44 (0)20 7631-4809

Or does fact checking sound like hard work?

Perhaps you could ask BPA to send you a press release.

Anonymous said...

Way to contradict the claim that no figures have been filed this year by quoting 2007 numbers, Einstein.

And hasn't ITP already sacked at least one person for direct contact with Time Out in London? Hasn't concern already been expressed about breach of brand guidelines and contract?

Anonymous said...

Thank you 10:28 for a breath of intelligence.

Anonymous said...

Einstein can only quote the only copy sales figures that ARE available on the BPA web site. i.e. the last audit report that has been published.

What do you want - completely made up figures?

Oh, I forgot, that is exactly want you want...

Anonymous said...

Er genius, I was responding to the claim that the sales figures were betweeen 2 and 3,000 copies - not that figures have not been filed.

And to the other golly gosh idiot who asked if this was true and if they could have cast iron guarantees.

I despair, this really is one of the laziest industries in the Middle East. I guess that is whyt so few media companies out there are successful.

You want it all on a plate and moan when it is not.

Anonymous said...

So let me get this right, Time Out Dubai sells, off the newsstand, 6,000 copies a week - 24,000 a month plus.

What Gone On, sells 2500 monthly.

That puts things in perspective somewhat: after all this tosh, it turns out that Time Out Dubai is outselling its nearest rival by a factor of almost 10. BPA audited.

Not bad at all...

Anonymous said...

Sure you can look at the BPA website to see how much Time Out Dubai sells. The figure was posted in Dec 2007. Almost 9months ago.

Then compare that figure to the one stated on the ITP site's Time Out 'fact' sheet.

There is almost a 5% difference.

Guess which one is higher?

Anonymous said...


Aren't most copies of Time Out Dubai given away?

Anonymous said...

Christ, can you guys go and look at the BPA audit if you want to make a comment here.

The figure of 6,000 a week is weekly SOLD, SINGLE COPY SALES. The circulation is much, much higher.

The monthly SOLD, SINGLE COPY SALES of What's Gone is 2500 - i.e. one tenth the number TimeOut SELLS.

Incidentally TimeOutDubai has the latest of the two audits. What's Gone's latest figure are for June 2007 - six months behind Time Outs.

And for the record, it takes time for the BPA to audit figures supplied to it...

Anonymous said...

Just looked at

States that Retail Sales including international are 4,300.

It is quoted from the BPA audit from Jan to June 2007.

Unless I am missing something here - that is 1,655 less copies that the July to Dec 2007 report as published on the BPA web site.

(And approx 2,300 or 1,300 more copies that some posters claimed it was).

I can see the headlines in London now:

"Time Out Dubai publishes old media pack info on ITP web site".

That looks a good enough exclusive to grace many a front page.

Anonymous said...

So let me get this right.

According to audited figures, Time Out Dubai outsells its nearest rival by 10 times in one month,

From what I have understood from what the posters are saying 2008s figures have been filed, and are waiting for the BPA to release them.

What's more, even as it stands, Time Out has a BPA audited circulation six months more up to date than its rival.

Explain it to me - why are you focusing on ITP..? There seems to be a better target.

Anonymous said...

And why are several ITP publications forfeit on BPA?

And why do I sense the hand of ITP senior staff on this blog right now?

Should Serafin re-launch "Ace Promotions" and move back to Norwich?

Anonymous said...

why was this post removed????

Saturday, 2 August 2008
I've been an avid reader of Dubai Media Blog over the last few months and given the fact that a huge percentage of this blog is given over to slag off ITP I thought it would be a great idea to set up something specifically to have a go at them. You can find it at I've switched off moderation but anything off subject of slagging off ITP will be deleted. On that subject please feel free to let go, have a pop and dish the dirt. Anyone with ITP news , rumours or otherwise can email me and I'll post it as a thread -
Posted by Stinky Boy at 8/02/2008 10:08:00 PM
Labels: blogs, ITP

Anonymous said...

Don'e expect anything but vitriolic abuse of ITP over on ITP dirt (which kind of goes without saying, I guess).

Despite Mr Stinky's promise to switch off moderation, he's already been busy deleting - I posted a comment pointing on his blog out that while ITP was a sad company, dedicating time and effort and a chunk of his weekend to bulding a blog about it was a bit sadder.

Back came the somewhat paranoid response that I was obviously from ITP as I was trying to discredit him. Then he deleted the original posting.

So I'll say it here instead: ITP, not very nice people; building blogs about them, obsessional.

But as I see you've just given him mod rights here, perhaps this comment will vanish soon enough, if it ever goes up at all.

Waddaya say, Stinkyboy?
03 August, 2008 01:17
Stinky smells said...

I just tried to post something there - he's already turned moderation on - so that didn't last very long...
03 August, 2008 05:03
Stinky Boy said...

I've had a few postings suggesting that as the creator of ITP Dirt I am either 'sad' or 'obsessional'. So I thought I'd give a very brief explanation.
The very idea that during my every waking moment I sit focusing on ways to bring ITP low is quite amusing. It took me two minutes to dream up the idea to do this and has probably taken about 30mins work since (it's been 'live' about 3days).
If nobody cares enough to post anything or debate anything - then the blog will die the death it deserves. No tears would be shed on my part.
The reasons? Well, there's a sizeable amount of vitriolic anti-ITP comment on Dubai Media Observer. I just wanted to give it more of a focus - maybe reach a level that when someone looks for ITP online my blog pops up. Secondly, the idea of causing annoyance to ITP is amusing. Even if it is utterly meaningless. The effort I have to put in (absolute minimum) is worth it.
So, unfortunately, the "sad obsessional" tag is not applicable in this instance.
Apologies re: moderation - a mistake on my part. I've now turned it off again. However, I want to keep it on subject as much as possible. Maybe the debate about whether me, the ITP Dirt blog or whatever is sad/weird/obsessional or general abusive comments should be made here. As pointed out I've got moderation status here but I don't see the point of deleting anything on this blog.
I just thought you lot spent so much time bitching about said company's practices, output, management style etc etc etc why not hold their butt to the grill in a more focused way?
For the record I don't and never have worked for any of ITP's rivals.
Finally, I am completely open to any thread/posting ideas.
03 August, 2008 22:24
Anonymous said...

what a pointless thread
04 August, 2008 04:43
Anonymous said...

oh my god - stinkyboy - get a life
04 August, 2008 13:07
Anonymous said...

04 August, 2008 22:04
Anonymous said...

can somebody post something more interesting purrleasssssssssseeeeeeee!!!
05 August, 2008 15:45
Anonymous said...

What next? AMG dirt, Gulf News dirt, Khaleej Times dirt? Waste of space
05 August, 2008 15:51
Stinky Boy said...

DMO posters have been whining for years about shoddy standards, poor working practices and abuse of employees in Dubai. You can't organise a union - they're illegal - so you have few viable alternatives.
Exposing a company via publishing as much dirt you can stand up is one of them. And a blog is a readily accessible format to do that in. It's a tried and tested tactic that's been used by union activists and journalists for as long as they've been around.
If you think that's sad, shit, a waste of space or whatever then ho ho ho.
And why shouldn't employees of AMG, Gulf News set up a blog holding their company to account? News travels fast around the world these days...
05 August, 2008 20:41
Anonymous said...

I'd be inclined to post on such a forum relating to my publisher (ie not ITP). I still don't have a visa after nine months here. And the accounts department (who double up as Human Resources) don't seem to know whether they are coming or going. With the new visa rules, I'm worried. I like my magazine (it's a good brand to have on my CV, if not the best worldwide edition) and I'm reluctant to mess up my CV by leaving after such a relatively short spell. But I am reaching the end of my tether. We work our butts off as part of a very small team, we have no budget to speak of (our owners spends all his money on saving animals, or so he suggests) and the mag is full of mistakes week after week, due to lack of staff investment. I'm not the only one in my position either. So, the question is, is it OK to leave or will my CV be irreparably damaged? And am going to be left in the lurch come my next visa run?
Incredibly frustrated of Dubai
06 August, 2008 00:46
anon_mediator said...

to incredibly frustrated : with the new visa rules, you may not just be left in the lurch come visa run time. you might not be able to come back. (might sort out your problems?)
06 August, 2008 11:17
Stinky Boy said...

Here's the latest thread on ITP Dirt. (Anyone from any other company - such as "incredibly frustrated" - can feel free to spill the beans on how shit it is for them).

Just how bad (or good) can it be working for ITP? Do the sales teams really bully editorial? Have there really been instances of sanctioned plagiarism? What about senior staff throwing hissy fits? Anyone underpaid, late paid? Promised wage increases or positions that never materialise? I heard that a while back a few staff members collectively approached management and were instantly sacked - is there any truth in this?
06 August, 2008 11:56
Anonymous said...

I know which company you are talking about...afraid that place has a bad reputation, might be better not to be on a visa as its easier to leave - the new visa regulations do not apply to majority of EU/US.
06 August, 2008 16:21
Stinky Boy said...

I think it's strange that so many Dubai companies get away with such bad treatment and it doesn't get aired. This ain't like finding out your employer in London is shite. For most people it's a big move getting out to UAE only to find out you're working for a bunch or clueless, spivy fuckwits.
Be good to find out who the company mentioned here are so that others don't make the same mistake.
06 August, 2008 17:43
Anonymous said...

Crap Publishing International????
06 August, 2008 19:35
Anonymous said...

I'd feel a bit nervous abut naming my company as I'm still here and don't know who reads here. But thanks for the advice of sorts. This really is a shocking place to work and the more I think about it, the more I think I should leave. Followed up on my visa today and still no sign of it. We have no management to speak of (my editor is practically the same age as me) and we've dictated to by our sales team who seem to run the show. The owner won't take my calls, our freelancers don't get paid...I'm not even sure our brand owner has been paid for a long time. The list goes on... unbelievable really.
06 August, 2008 21:24
Anonymous said...


thank you :)

pure class
07 August, 2008 07:25
Stinky Boy said...

I've heard it said many times that the Dubai publishing market will only improve standards - both publishing and employment - when it matures. However vague and unquantifiable maturation is there might be some truth in that point. However, journalists and writers MUST play a key role in any maturating market place. The shifting and complicated alliance between labour and owners is one the most important stages of development in any industry. In effect, it is not only up to the owners/bosses how that maturation process plays out and, ultimately, they can't do it without the intervention of labour. The tale told by anon 21:24 is a common one - the person is even terrified to anonymously name the company on a blog!! How is 'maturation' expected to take place in such a context? And what role can writers and journalists play? Or are we just there to pick up our pay cheques, tug out forelocks and re-write pr copy?
07 August, 2008 11:19
Anonymous said...

CPI I presume? Terrible company to work for. If you get caught working without a visa, its a Dh50,000 fine and deportation. Not really worth the risk I think. The amount of kudos you will get from a badly licensed UK title is minimal, particularly if future interviewers ask to see a copy. My advice: don't believe anything they say until you see if for yourself, and look after number one.
07 August, 2008 12:14
Stinky Boy said...

new thread on ITP Dirt

Some posters are suggesting that ITP produces world-attention grabbing works of journalism, influencing and shaping major international publishing brands. Others think ITP's output is a total joke. This is your chance to put your case - paste in copy samples, discuss ITP's groundbreaking/advertising sales team-led stories or just show us some of the shite they've produced. Money where mouth is time, people.
07 August, 2008 15:22
Anonymous said...

Dear, oh dear, you lot still haven't got it, have you? Noble thoughts on journalistic integrity, truth, ethics and original reporting. Fair treatment of employees and honest business practices.

This is Dubai. Anyone who thinks for one second that they are here to further their journalistic career or produce groundbreaking stories is severely deluded.

Dubai was, is and always will be about commerce. Bottom line. The rest, as they say, is window dressing. The pretence of quality, the PR spin, the blatant copying of ideas and the lack of original thought and talent. Who cares? The wheels of commerce still run and we take the corporate dollar on its coattails.

My old LCP lecturer once told us class of wide eyed cub reporters: "If you want to make money in journalism, then the exit is at the back of the room." Sadly, Dubai was but a twinkle in the eye back then, so now we get a Grantham Advertiser sub earning more in Dubai as an 'editor' than his publisher back in the UK.

An editor of what? A review of Gordon Ramsay's latest cheesecake promotion, the wonderfully beneficient property market or the saintly Dubai Cares?

I have worked on newspapers here and the stuff that has been spiked would uncurl your afro. Similarly publishers are here to make a buck, not to expose truths or dole out Pullizer's to their staff. That's why mags will always be advertising, not editorially, led. Just do the math.

The best we can do is retain a healthy cynicism about the place and our own condition here. Next time you're enjoying the happy hour at Radisson DMC take a good, long hard look around you. One of two things will happen. Either you'll head straight to the airport clutching a one way ticket; or you'll laugh hysterically and order another Corona.

We make our choices in life. Those 30 pieces of silver in Judas's pocket just contributed to making the knot ever so tighter on the drop.
07 August, 2008 18:39
Anonymous said...

that's a very honest and cynical appraisal...
But ITP certainly don't sell themselves that way to the outside world....
07 August, 2008 23:31
Anonymous said...

That's all very good but the inference is that it's not like that in the rest of the world. But it is. There may be a certain media set driven by editorial integrity and strong journalism standards but the majority of media is run exactly the same way as Dubai's media industry. In fact, the editorial standards of newspapers in the UK (notably the tabloids) is what scares authorities in emerging and awakening markets into believing the media is a rampant and dangerous beast that needs controlling.
08 August, 2008 07:34
Anonymous said...

I take it you mean the News of the World etc? Would that be the same NOTW who put Jeffrey Archer in prison? I've worked with the tabs (as well as the 'qualities') and their standards are much higher than you think - many of the smartest journos in the UK work in them. In terms of ownership they would also be very close to how Dubai newspapers are already run.
The reason Dubai's elite would be scared of the tabs is that their hypocrisy would be exposed - you know, that bit where they talk of 'muslim' values and then get drunk and sleep with a Russian prostitute.
And the Dubai media certainly does overlap with the some of the crapper publishers in the UK. But ITP claim to be market leaders both in terms of quality and sales. Compare them to Emap/Bauer, Conde Nast, Future and even smaller companies like Ink and while ITP might make more money, in terms of quality and set-up they are back in the 80s.
08 August, 2008 12:04
Anonymous said...

I have worked on the tabloids too and while there certainly smart people working on them, the standards are not high. Made up quotes are par for the course, slapping an 'exlusive' tag on virtually anything (Same as Time Out Dubai really) and no accountability.
08 August, 2008 12:48
Anonymous said...

agree with the made up quotes bit and also the exclusive tag but they still do produce some good stuff and their subs are best in the business. UK newspapers are on the decline - and even the so-called qualities produce garbage and make stuff up. I remember a recent Observer mag coverline on Charlotte Church's tits. The real evil fuckers in the UK are associated - Mail, Standard etc. So it's swings and roundabouts.
I also think Dubai doesn't compare well at all to London. Things like job-mobility, your rights, visas etc etc have a huge impact on freedom of speech for foreign writers/journos. Such things just don't exist in the UK. In Dubai you could be arrested at the airport for trying to leave your job.
08 August, 2008 13:23
Anonymous said...

anon@12.14. Thanks for the advice. I'm inclined to agree. Came out here for the title, and it looks good on my CV, but showing someone a copy in an interview is a moment I dread. My editor milks the job for all it's worth in freebies and a good time, does little in the way of actual work, and there's no direction to the magazine. I come from a 'second rate' publishing market, but my experience of Dubai compares badly. The owner is a short sighted individual to say the least (and a very strange character) and practically everyone who I meet who has worked with/for him speaks very badly of him. And yet the sell when I came over was so different. I'm losing interest very rapidly...and very concerned about the future. This shouldn't be allowed to happen. In a way, I'm glad the authorities are clamping down on companies such as mine, but it doesn't help my situation. If it wouldn't get my colleagues (who are great girls) in trouble, I'd be inclined to call the labour department in anonymously!
08 August, 2008 23:48
Anonymous said...

Someone a while ago made a really clever point that I'm always reminded of, when reading these posts:

Journalism in Dubai is the equivalent of teaching English in South Korea.

So true.
09 August, 2008 21:47

Anonymous said...

look at all of you so excited about BPA figures? running around so thrilled that you might have something to ring Time Out London about.

Pathetic tossers, all of you. Its thursday evening - get a life.

Anonymous said...

Hilarious, some posters on this site really are using sentiment than brain power.

Time Out sells on the newsstand and has bulk free distrubution to hotels etc. Its common practice.

Having such prominent POS clearly helps it sell average 6,000 copies PER WEEK, so aapprox 24k per month.

Now if Whats On sells 2,600 copies per month, then this means its bulk free % is considerably higher to reach its claimed circulation figures.

Now which bright spark said that position was immaterial when it came to reader loyalty??? 'If limited visibility is a claim then why are the single copy sales of some of these titles so good?'.....Well numbnuts, you answered your own question there didnt you??? Facts before mouthing off bellend

If Whats On is the closest to Time Out for newsstand sales, I woul hate to guess if OK! and Hello break 2,000 copies......

Anonymous said...

BPA Audit periods, should (if you have nothing to hide) be done every 6 months. AIR from Jan - June and July - December.

But over here, noone its the fault of the habibi sales guys and the dumb agencies :-

Habibi Sales Guy :'Habibi, we have 100,000 circulation' Mens and womens fashion. Celeb gossip, politics, property, cars, business. It has everything

Agency: When did you launch?

Habibi Sales Guy : Last week

Agency : OK habibi, here's $50,000

Give me strength...

Anonymous said...

18:59 - clearly you have not done audits before. You don't come to the end of June, fax across a bit of paper and get your audit statement back.

The auditor has to go through your numbers, verify and confirm them. That's why it's called an audit.

Very few titles will have an audit for the first six months of 2008 - the period ended six weeks ago. The smaller the publisher with less there is to audit may get back statements quicker, but not much.

Anonymous said...

OK currently shifts less than 600 on the shelves every week. In May it sold around 1,200. In February it sold around 2,500. The audit will soon be forfeit.

Hello currently shifts 1,500 on the shelves. In May it sold around 2,000. In February it sold around 2,000.

It's summer and people are away. Feb-May is not usually a time when sales fluctuate so much. June-August sales generally drop.

OK sales are diving generally, that much is obvious. As for Hello, do it's readers not go on holiday, or is it winning readers over from OK?

Just stats...I think both magazines are dull, badly edited guff.

Anonymous said...

Just been to BPAs Web site. Interesting stuff. Ahlan - a magazine much derided here - is doing really well. Average weekly paid copies - audited - 12,600.

Hello magazine is selling 4,700 single copy sales - considerably less that one half of Ahlan's, while OK! magazine is an applicant - has been since Jan 2007 (!) - and has yet to complete an audit.

I think a little research has shown ITP are the good guys here - not only doing audits, but actually the only publisher actually selling magazines.

Anonymous said...

Oh dear, oh dear, look what you've started. You asked about setting up a magazine and now we've got a whole bunch of media people obsessing about audits.

Ladies and gentlemen. Get this. Every (yes every) magazine publisher inflates their circulation figures. You can easily do it like this:

1. Leave a copy of your mag in the bog at work. On average in a single day 20 people will use said crapper. Most people on my floor are white, European, middle class and driving a car. Therefore I've got an ABC 1 demographic and a readership figure too.

2. Now multiply said bog users by the 20 floors in the building and multiply that again by the total number of tower blocks along SZR.

3. Then multiply that by three in case some sod nicks it from the bog and shows his family over dinner.

4. Go to the top of your tower block. Lick your finger and then hold it into the breeze.

5. Get your art department to make a nice little rate card and fill it with dinky pie charts and phrases such as 'high nett-worth individuals' and 'proven spending power'. Use the word 'lifestyle' a lot. It impresses people.

4. Send your large breasted salesgirl to DMC to meet with a square-headed Levantine with an oversized tie knot and tell her to say 'habibi' a lot. Tell her not to leave without a booking confirmation, even if it means her loosening another blouse button.

5. Buy your printer a bottle of the cheapest Indian whisky from Ajman and tell him to issue you with a delivery note stating your print run is 30,000.

6. Take delivery of your 500 copies and place strategically in bogs.

Hey presto, you're a publisher in Dubai!

Anonymous said...


ITP are not the good guys. The point is that Ahlan and TO are audited because they are market leaders in the city, and that is then touted around as proof of transparency; but not ONE of the group's other 60-odd titles are (AB is debatable as it keeps forfeiting) because none of them print even up to 10% of their claimed circulation, let alone the geographic distribution claimed on the media packs. Most copies make it to agencies and clients in Dubai and that's about it.

Anonymous said...

But Time Out and Ahlan have not been audited for the whole of 2008.

What's the reason for this? Have sales collapsed? Time Out has certainly been very poor of late. Are ITP having problems?

And if you think just because ITP post high sales figures for Ahlan we have no rationale for taking the piss out of probably the most vacuous shite English language magazine in existence you are sorely misguided.

Anonymous said...

Please reread the comment regarding audits and time scales. Obviously you're slightly backward, so I am cutting and pasting it for you...

18:59 - clearly you have not done audits before. You don't come to the end of June, fax across a bit of paper and get your audit statement back.

The auditor has to go through your numbers, verify and confirm them. That's why it's called an audit.

Very few titles will have an audit for the first six months of 2008 - the period ended six weeks ago. The smaller the publisher with less there is to audit may get back statements quicker, but not much.

Separately ITP does seem to have some titles that are forfeit, which deserves investigation, but as a publisher it still audits more than any other publisher in this region. Go to the BPA Web site and count.

Finally, the single copy sales are just that - single copy sales. Not a made up number based on multiples of how many people read a magazine - but what is actually being bought.

ITP are doing more - more sales, more audits. The BPA web site is open to you to go and check this.

Anonymous said...

I really hope you guys do more fact checking when you write your stories:

"but not ONE of the group's other 60-odd titles are [audited]"

Please go to the BPA Web site. It is public domain. Just on the first page you will find:
Aviation Business, Arabian Business, Arabian Travel News, Boat Owner Middle East, Caterer Middle East...

There are three more pages of magazines to go through - but I sincerely hope you get the point!

Anonymous said...


This thread started with missives claiming ITP never audited its titles, was underhand about its circulation figures, and in so doing was destroying the good honest publishers out there.

However, what we have found out with a little fact checking is:

1. ITP audits more magazines than any other publisher.
2. Time Out's audited single copy sales are 10 times the audited figure of its nearest rival - What's Gone.
3. Like it or not, Ahlan is probably the most popular magazine in this region, and selling 24 times the amount of its nearest rival - audited.
4. It is more up to date with its audits than any other regional publisher.

I think the original claim has been turned on its head.

Anonymous said...

03:24 - take the piss out of anything if you want to, that's your prerogative.

But its sales say it is a good magazine in being fit for purpose. It understands its demographics, and delivers a tailored product for it.

Consequently it sells, which makes it commercially interesting, and makes a hefty amount of money.

I would have thought that would be a good lesson for "Starting a Magazine in Dubai" - supposedly the point of this thread.

vince said...

When I was a young boy I dreamed of working for one of the big magazines: Esquire, Vanity Fair, Caterer Middle East^^

Anonymous said...

Does anyone have any ideas on which is the worst magazine in Dubai?

Anonymous said...

Does anyone have any ideas on which is the worst magazine in Dubai?

Anonymous said...

You can really sense the panic here among the ITP management posting here.

To get the real BPA figures you need to be a registered user - anyone can do this.

ITP is forfeit on several titles.

Only one - Construction Weekly - has figures for 2008.

Time Out's figures are 5% less than on the ITP website.

This is irrefutable.

I don't work for ITP nor any of its rivals but am a journalist who has an objective interest in the Dubai media scene.

Anyone can put their mag up for audit - but if you don't give figures and go forfeit it is meaningless.

Also, without a regular audit (nothing in 2008?? it's almost September....) any figures from the past are pretty useless.

The ITP management posting here are desperate to turn this around and have a clear interest in spinning this.

As for Ahlan - sure it sells. Doesn't mean it is interesting or expresses some kind of journalistic highpoint. In fact, claiming it is 'serious' is ridiculous and such claims show the complete lack of self-awareness so prevalent in Dubai.

Anonymous said...

Before anyone at ITP or TOD starts bandying around sales and audit figures, proclaiming themselves the kings and queens of Dubai publishing, it's worth noting: ITP consumer are losing money hand over fist.

For all the gang there love to think they rule the world, the simple fact is - the consumer division loses an astronomical amount of cash.

And that includes Time Out Dubai.

cherry said...

if its any help i promise i spend a significant amount of each meeting i do with clients and agencies talking about audits, the difference between paid for and bulk free distribution, avr, quality media, transparency, accountability and strangely itp is the best example of shoddy publishing e.g. arabian business 4%paid for.... i have done this since i arrived 2 years ago and will continue to do so. transparency and accountability will drive quality in media and the avr/brown envelope way of doing things will change slowly. i have no problem telling clients that unless they instruct omd to use certain titles they wont as itp do the big avr deals and rip of clients - and yes most publishing houses do this. i have several large clients auditing their agencies behaviour and why not. leb scum on the one hand and itp scum on the other. love it!

Anonymous said...

Cherry wrote:

'transparency and accountability will drive quality in media'

In Dubai? Never. Ever.

Repeat ad nauseum.

Anonymous said...

anon 22.04 - you are a very sad fucker. Please try and get a life. The sooner you fucked off from Dubai the better for the rest of us.

anon 22.30 - what do you base this information on? If you can't, then it is fair to say you are a lying cunt.

Anonymous said...

So let me get this straight. The biggest selling magazine in the country averages 12,000 copies a week?? Wow!

Anonymous said... do you know they are losinng an 'astronomical amount of cash' ??? You secretly work in accounts....?

Anonymous said...

Cherry, we are agreed that the agencies are weak and the market needs clearing up (what ever happend to the CASTOR commmittee?) Thought Unilever guy was going to clean the market up??? That was two years ago....

cherry said...

if, theoretically the govt are cleaning out corruption in the contruction/real estate industry and they know that many u.s and u.k banking guys are leaving because of the lack of transparency and they are throwing a lot of money at making the difc a serious global player then hopefully (am i totally naive) the whole place will step up forced from the top. it has to if they want to play with the global players and i reckon theyre savvy enough about the potential revenue from doing this. morgan stanley etc dont miss these things....! unilever took media inhouse and i know that they discuss these issues. ask mark for an update on that one..! i'll go and shoot myself now for my overly positive attitude....and by the way publishing houses like itp existed in london b4 the market stopped accepting them e.g cornhill & however it will take more than the 'market' to stop them ! the scum that control this industry will not last forever

Anonymous said...

Cherry is correct. This place may have started out from a very narrow base but has to broaden that base to sustain the targets that have been set. They aren't investing in institutions like DIFC only to let corrupt media (or any other industry) practices bring things down. The need to bring major players here and allow SMEs to flourish means this has to happen. In the end the self interest is in maintaining growth and development and this is only achieved by creating a broad base to work from. The corrupt, small time practices will be forced out by the need for regulation to attract investment. It's easy to be disdainful of the "habibi" culture (that expression is just racism really) but there's too much at stake here by people who know what they're doing to let this low level wheeling and dealing compromise it and it's all just part of the evolution of capitalist economies.

Anonymous said...

Cherry is certainly correct in her positive optimism. The media does have to change. But only until you have editorial freedom, will advertising transparency follow.

Gagging journalists and self-censorship have effectively muzzled the press here. A proxy server, easily bypassed, sets the tone for freedom of information in this city under the spurious veil of 'against local customs and values'.

But if we're looking at a transparent media, which is far down the food chain from the economy and infrastructure, then it's got a very long way to go.

With four quasi-government property companies currently under investigation (including the house detention of a very senior official), the gambling house joke that is the DFM and the ahem, judiciary it's all too plain to see that media houses operate with the same spurious intentions as the rest of the business community.

And why not? When you have a culture of expats trying to screw a system that sees no value in them other than economic, then you have an environment of rampant greed, lies and distortions.

Scratch the surface of glitz and glamour, inflated egos and a profit (rather than quality) driven business ethic and you'll discover the real underbelly of commerce here. Combine that with a credit crunch in most expats' home countries, spiralling inflation, an overheated local property market and an all round tightening of belts and you'll see that this change ain't gonna come for a very long time.

Dubai's media, as Disraeli commented: “Lies, damned lies.... and statistics.”

Anonymous said...

Lies, damned lies, statistics, and certain sections of the media.

Citing the investigation of fraudulent activity is not a pointer to indemic corruption. It happens everywhere there is money being flushed around and the fact that it is being investiagted and reported must surely be a good sign.

No doubt there is a long way to go to attain a transprarent media here(please don't claim the UK has reached such a level!) but there's only one way to get there and that's forge ahead. All media is compromised, by business concerns or ideology, or incompetence, to some degree.

You can put up a physical structure anywhere at anytime but building a media industry is a little more complex and a lot more organic.

Anonymous said...

A little bit of IQ!!

Anonymous said...

To anon 15.14 who wrote:

'Citing the investigation of fraudulent activity is not a pointer to indemic corruption'

I take your point, but only when that fraudulent activity is considered normal in a society citing 'baksheesh' and where proper judicial processes never run their course by virtue of 'wasta'.

In order for transparency to happen at all levels you are looking a serious cultural and moral sea change in the region. With petrodollars still awash here I just don't see it happening any time soon, especially in the media sector.

Anonymous said...

cherry, if you don't like the industry here, then why don't you fuck off back to where you came from?

Anonymous said...

Why attack Cherry?
I'm assuming she works at a media agency.
Her job is to represent her client, ie the advertiser. That means buying the advertising space that will most efficiently reach her client's target audience.
That means placing it where she is most confident that magazine really will deliver the readership it claims.
That means asking tough questions about audits, and educating her clients about what that means.
Inviting her to fuck off suggests that you have something to hide.

Chris said...

Bitter, twisted and pathetically childish - what a waste of the internet you lot are turning out to be. Media in Duabi? God help us. I hope that the original poster has ascertained the low-down by now and has decided to give it a miss. Grow up. By the way, really clever use of the "why don't you f*ck off back where you came from" chestnut - classy journalism...

Anonymous said...

Oh dear, I think we've lost our Cherry.

Anonymous said...


Sorry to take off track and publish something potentially positive here...

Call for nominations for 40 Under 40 2008

How about something like this - to encouarge good work rather than keep nailing it.

Best 40 press vs. Best 40 PRs under 40 yrs old...
PRWeek is now accepting nominations for its second-annual "40 under 40" feature, to be published in the December 8 issue. This special feature will profile 40 agency, corporate, and nonprofit professionals, as well as educators, under the age of 40 that are doing outstanding work for their clients/companies and for the PR industry as a whole. Individuals featured on the list will demonstrate innovative thinking, strong determination, and results that indicate a long and successful career in the PR industry. Those individuals profiled on last year's list are not eligible for inclusion in this year's feature.

cherry said...

not lost just to the biggest agency in town today to 'discuss' the fact that they have instructed all their planners to hugely reduce our insetions because we wont pay avr. by the way there are plenty of mags that here that dont do itp pikey but theyre all run from outside the region as far as i am aware. also i dont work in an agency but have self respect and bizzarely have a genuine passion for media and would put pins in my eyes before joining on of the filthy ones over here although I would earn more cashish to be fair. if you think that most uk and developed world media isnt transparent youre eiter retarded or worked in a very pikey downmarket media owner which wasnt significant enough to be part of independant industry measurement i.e. BARB, TGI, RAJAR, EBRS etc etc. in my opinion if it isnt measurable it isnt media and to be fair to itp audited bulk free is better than no audit at all....even if they do mislead on how many of those people actually buy it (the agencies are so poor they mostly dont actually know how to use an audit or want to use an audit as how does that help achieve avr and increase margins..!). finally love the grazia audit which sells loads so all good but love the approx 15,000 copies bulk free 'paid for' at 1AED annual subscription. brilliant. hurrah!

Anonymous said...

This one is for the CPI person who is stuck if still reading this blog.
Pigs have been known to get wings.
Like the staff did when I worked there. Down the stairs if there was a whiff of a labour check. Only four people sat on their desks.
I know people there who did visa runs for two years.
If the animal lover does not pick up your calls, it means that you are
no longer the flavour of the year
or you might be due for a raise.

Anonymous said...

Ah, good old CPI. I worked there too. And I would echo the comments of my former colleague (?) @ 22.32.
The animal botherer must have contacts in high places because I have no idea how DMC has not closed them down long before now. No visas, staff frequently not paid for work done, raises (or, more often in my experience, profit shares) promised but never materialising, no medical cover, staff forced to stump up for their own equipment, invoices rarely paid, magazines launched then closed down within a matter of issues, mags launched without licences and much more. And wasn't CPI started after the owner stole Robert Serafin's computer - hence ITP hate CPI? To whoever the advice was aimed at - get out of there as fast as you possibly can.

Anonymous said...

Corr! Makes a change from ITP-baiting, doesn't it!
Are CPI and ITP vying for the title of worst publisher in the Gulf or something?
Come on Motivate, you must have done some rubbish things recently...

Anonymous said...

hi moderator
can you start a post on the role of PR and the nightmares that the press have with them?

Anonymous said...

As a media buyer in a large MBU, I would like to bring something to everyones attention ? On the subject of 'Starting a magazine in Dubai'. Does anyone know if motivate has got the licence for Golf Digest? Iv heared this from senior motivate guys and expect it to be true? just heard that ITP contacted the licensor to try and nab the license and that they laughed at them...pathetic if you ask me. Iv also been told that mens health is secured by motivate.
my clients will definatelly buy mens health...after the useless ENG offering.

Anonymous said...

Cherry has to be South Arican or Australian...honest, down to earth and tells it like it is?

Anonymous said...

Motivate has issued a decree saying that ex-Motivate staffers can't freelance for them anymore. That's pretty rubbish. Perhaps if they paid people well, the staffers wouldn't leave in the first place.

Anonymous said...

I think the recent threads here including ITP Dirt have showed that bloggers in DXB can show some real teeth. There have been some attempts to move this entire thing into the usual "why don't you fuck off if you don't like it" territory but that's been nicely sidestepped.
Quite clearly ITP have been damaged by cold hard facts than if this was just whinging ex-employees.

Anonymous said...

Isn't anyone interested in discussing the Khaleej Times redesign????

Anonymous said...

lol@20.42 - mr adservice. if you're going to post on here, at least try to take on an anon persona

Anonymous said...

Er, some mistake surely? Didn't the 'cold hard facts' establish ITP sold more than any other publisher; that it audited more titles than any other publisher and that it has the most recent audits of any other publisher.

Those are the only facts on the table.

All the rest was just misinformed rubbish by people who don't know but for some reason pretend they do. ITP Consumer does not lose money, although think that if you want to; Time Out has nothing to do with the consumer group...

But well done for trying!

Anonymous said...

Errr - what was established was that ITP hasn't audited anything since 2007 (except for Construction Weekly), half its attempts to audit end in forfeit (basically nothing was ever audited) and it then puts figures on its own website 5% higher than the independently audited figure.

These facts are out there now. ITP is slowly being revealed for the crappy little nothing outfit it really is.

And, quite clearly, anyone unable to digest that is an ITP employee/lackey and should be completely ignored.

Or laughed at.

Raga said...

I worked at a magazine for a year (writer and editor) and haven't been paid a dirham! our chief editor took the owner to courts on that matter (he didn't pay the majority of his staff) and she lost. Go figure.

Anonymous said...

For the third time - the last audit period ended six weeks ago. That's why the majority of publications do not - yet - have an audit beyond December 2007... If you have a problem with that, please speak to the BPA!

The Time Out Dubai Web site is actually underplaying its circulation by quoting an earlier audit.

As I said, ITP has the most up to date audits of all Middle East publishers, the highest circulation figures of all Middle East publishers, and more titles being audited than any other publisher.

love or hate ITP, but they are the only facts here.

Anonymous said...

Errr... according to the BPA it doesn't even have the highest circulation out of all UAE publishers, let alone the whole Middle East. Nice try though.

Anonymous said...

I'm not sure if this is new, or perhaps I just searched harder than anybody else, but there is an audit for Ahlan English on the BPA web site that shows single copy sales of 13,438 per week in the first six months of 2008.

Anonymous said...

khaleej times redesign is lovely. here's hoping phase two involves hiring some english speakers.

Anonymous said...

So go on 19:06 - enlighten us all... what publisher does..? Let's do the work - please add up their total audited circulation for their magazines and let us know.

Please be clear whether you are referring to single copy sales, or bulk distribution so we can make like for like comparisons.

Anonymous said...

Well, look at that - the 2008 audit...

I suppose you'll now want the last two months!

Anonymous said...

What about the hard hitting Arabian "Business" website not writing anything about the ITP employee's beached whale sex incident, but they found the time to put up the Lebanese /Bulgarian lesbian tryst?
This not only demonstrates how the company selectively covers itself editorially, even when a story clearly falls within the hyped up sleazy remit of the flagship website. More importantly, the lesbian story was not followed up properly, no photos or interviews. Are they crazy?
What kind of tabloid would deprive its readers of hot Lebo Bulgarian action? Redeem yourself ITP. Go to the women's prison and give us an update. This is an excellent business story that needs to be ITP's. Spin it as "Dubai is top beach sex capital of the world" if you have to. Just give us a taste of those lovely muff divers.

Anonymous said...

This from Press Gazette...

Former Daily Mirror City Slicker Anil Bhoyrul was in understandably buoyant mood on Monday when, on the website, he broke the story that Manchester City Football Club had been bought by the Abu Dhabi United Group for Investment and Development (ADUG).

Not only did he secure a great scoop, he also scored an important – and probably embarrassing – victory over the recently launched Abu Dhabi-based daily The National, edited by Martin Newland.

ADUG is an investment vehicle funded by members of the Abu Dhabi royal family, as is the Abu Dhabi Media Company, which owns The National.

When Axegrinder asked Bhoyrul, editorial director of Dubai-based publisher ITP, if beating Newland’s paper to the story gave him special satisfaction, he was dismissive of any suggestion that publication should be considered a rival. “I thought The National only published press releases,” he replied cheekily.

Anonymous said...

Looks like ITP do have the most audited titles - 15, Motivate next with 10.
So to audit all their magazines, Motivate have another 10 to do and ITP only have 50 or so.
Look forward to seeing Charged's audit.

Anonymous said...

Anil Bhoyrul probably didn't run the Michelle Palmer story because he is too busy trying to help her sell the story to the highest bidder when she gets out of the slammer. Can't you just see the "My Middle East jail hell" headlines already? Perhaps he is looking to restart his career in the UK as a Z-grade celebrity publicist.

Anonymous said...

Really - Motivate have that few titles? I thought they were supposed to be a competitor to ITP?

Anonymous said...

Loved Anil's piece. Come on DMO boys and girls - be big enough and give him credit - a scoop, and a great one at that.

Anonymous said...

he was probably the one that sold the story to the tabloids anyway

Anonymous said...

No original reporting in any of the top four stories on Arabian Business right now.

Hats off to Bhoyrul for the scoop though - if a criminal spiv can do it, we can all strive...

Anonymous said...

22:03 - I like your high expectations - every story on to be a world breaking scoop.

Anonymous said...

It was actually the reporter Andy Sambidge who got the scoop, not Anil Bhoyrul. This "scoop" has the same date as the press release with a quote taken from the press release.

Anonymous said...

thought anil was ghosting al fahim's autobiography or memoiry thing anyway?

Anonymous said...

There is too much disinformation on this site.

It was Anil's story - and credit goes to him for a great scoop. He broke the story - and has been quoted by everyone around the world - please check Google News.

Andrew Sambidge is the Editor in Chief of, not a reporter on it.

Anil Bhoyril is the Editorial Director of ITP Executive - which includes Arabian Business Magazine.

David Westley is the Editorial Director of ITP Digital - which includes all of ITP's online products - including

Anonymous said...

lots of chiefs, not so many indians then

Anonymous said...

No, that would be Motivate

Anonymous said...

Is 14.12 doing the PR for ITP?

Anonymous said...

So this David Wesley is Anil's boss? How many directors are there in this company?!

Anonymous said...

You mean misinformation, disinformation is to give it too much credit.

Anonymous said...

Hey moderator.
Take off the Emirates Today and Evening Post links.
This is what I get when I click on them. and pls start a post on PR in Dubai

Under Construction

The site you are trying to view does not currently have a default page. It may be in the process of being upgraded and configured.

Please try this site again later. If you still experience the problem, try contacting the Web site administrator.

If you are the Web site administrator and feel you have received this message in error, please see "Enabling and Disabling Dynamic Content" in IIS Help.
To access IIS Help

1. Click Start, and then click Run.
2. In the Open text box, type inetmgr. IIS Manager appears.
3. From the Help menu, click Help Topics.
4. Click Internet Information Services.

Anonymous said...

10.37 may be thinking of another Arabian Business story that was just a re-run press release with a byline. The story on the Abu Dhabi Media Company going into the movie business was run near-identical to the press release with Sambidge's byline. Let poor Anil have his footy scoop, eh?

Anonymous said...

The discussion board would take quite a different turn if there were no Ayrabs or Indians in the industry to begin with. This is the broblem only.

Anonymous said...

14.40 - are you on glue? Fuckwit.

Anonymous said...

"This is the broblem only"

Classic DMO stuff.

Anonymous said...

Fucks sake, I thought the point of blogs was the chance to comment instantaneously on breaking events and start new discussions in a timely fashion.

At present DMO is averaging about a post a month - you'd be better with pigeon post.

Surely it can't be that hard to come up with a couple of threads a week, or at least throw the floor open to your coterie of readers to start their own?

Lazy bastards!

mediamonster said...

Surely it can't be that hard to come up with a couple of threads a week, or at least throw the floor open to your coterie of readers to start their own?

We've asked and begged for more authors several times, but no one ever bothers to reply.

If you're interested, send an email - from an anonymous account preferably - to dubaimediablog at gmail and we'll add you.

Anonymous said...

Hello Moderator,

I find it extraordinary that the Khaleej Times relaunched last week and we have no discussion of it?

Can we start a separate thread?

Or maybe the majority of blog readers/posters are too concerned with bagging out eachother's publishing companies..

Just an idea...

anon_mediator said...

to anon @ 16.08 - it's the start of Ramadan, so we're being respectful and not slagging off anyone. We might change our mind tomorrow.

Anonymous said...

Fer ef's sake, this is getting so boring. is this all there is to say about media in Dubai ? obviously the place is still a cultural and intellectual black hole, despite all the new concrete, steel, smoked glass and air conditioning ducting.

face it people you are living in a desert

Curios george said...

Wow my humble question started an avalanche of views, didn't it? Thanks everyone... but my central question wasn't really answered: "could an honest mag ever have a chance?"

Anonymous said...

I say, yes it would. Some of the mags have typos and grammatical mistakes as well. Recently I was looking for What's On at a leading supermarket but I couldn't find.