In an interview with Al-Arabiya TV, Khaled Al Maeena — Editor-in-Chief of Saudi Gazette — takes a look at the past, present, and future of Saudi media. Al Maeena was twice Editor-in-Chief for Arab News, but took over the helm of Saudi Gazette in 2012. I’ve certainly seen the difference he’s made there, though he freely admits that the media environment has changed for the better under King Abdullah and his reform agenda.

Saudi media ‘pushing envelop’ on taboos, says Gazette editor
Ben Flanagan

Saudi Arabia’s media industry is pushing the boundaries on ‘taboo’ subjects like never before, according to the editor of a prominent English-language newspaper.

The kingdom ranks among the world’s most restrictive countries in terms of media freedom, according to Reporters Without Borders, which placed Saudi Arabia 163rd in its latest Press Freedom Index.

But Khaled Almaeena, editor-in-chief of the Saudi Gazette, said that freedom of expression has grown “by leaps and bounds” over the last 15 years.

“People are discussing things that were totally a social taboo many years ago. We talk about… harassment of women, we talk about corruption, and incidents that have happened that one cannot hide,” Almaeena told Al Arabiya.

“You cannot imagine in the last 15 years… how things have changed in this country,” he added.


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