Syrian Video Activists Plan News Broadcasts to Offer an Alternative to State Media
CAIRO ó In an interview this week at his home in the Egyptian capital, the British-Syrian activist Rami Jarrah described ambitious plans to create an Internet news network, with radio broadcasts and live video streams of daily life inside rebel-held territory, to offer an alternative to Syriaís state-controlled media.
Mr. Jarrah, who used the pseudonym Alexander Page to conceal his identity before he was forced to flee Syria last year, described the effort to transform a network of activists using video cameras to document the uprising into citizen journalists, whose work could eventually replace that of the state news agency, should President Bashar al-Assad be forced from power.
Speaking to The Lede as his young daughter played nearby, Mr. Jarrah described his initial efforts to document the first protests in Damascus last year on video, and how that work eventually compromised his own security.
Mr. Jarrah went on to describe plans to move from using his groupís Facebook page and Twitter feed just to draw attention to clips of protests and violence to broadcasting news and information to Syrians on both sides of the conflict. In addition to streaming live video of life in parts of the country outside government control, the group is working to set up Radio ANA, a new Internet radio station, with financial support from international aid groups.