MTV NETWORKS: THE ARABIAN CHALLENGE Due to the global conditions caused by globalization, there appeared a need to refocuson intercultural communication patters such as provision of framework for analyzing the interaction within the certain society and world region, demonstration of in the linkage between communication patters and sociocultural forces. In defining the culture according to the geographical boundaries, the Arab world is considered to be included into the Middle East which is encompassed by the worldwide Islamic community (Feghali, 1997). The culture of Arab world is characterized by such basic values as dignity, generosity, courage and self-respect, rivalry and revenge.
Besides, the main of values include collectivism, hospitality and honor. Due to the main religion of Middle East countries, Islam has shaped its own cultural identity and through the years of influence of the Western world, the Islamic culture was moderated with the dynamism of material and spiritual dimensions. It is also stated (Nurullah, 2008), that Muslims different interpretations of the same cultural traits impacts the way they perceive the inner world communication and their own organizations way of conducting business.
It is also estimated that effects of globalization have increased the spread of Western culture into the countries of Middle East, in particular the Americanized post-modern culture has finally incorporated the values of Islamic culture and resulted the mixed cultural trait. The Western media has spread its culture through launching such channels as MTV Network into the Arab world. However, in the countries of Middle East, media is still captured by the authoritarian rule and the stagnation of political development. These major factors greatly influence the media space within the Arab countries (Hafez, n.d. ).
Despite that, one can view the media of Arab countries to be balancing power to such great mobilizing force as political Islam. Thus, social networks, political organizations and the media have inspired people by liveliness and dynamics, but the old approach of politics, sex and religion is expressing Arab culture as outdated in the new age. Hafez (n. d.), points out that despite political transformations, the media is showing the varying potential that contributes the political change and in certain situations, the mass media is not primarily the political actor.
Instead, it is the mediator between the state, the opposition and the people. That is why, when considering an expansion to the Middle East, the company of MTV Network should analyze different and numerous factors that could influences its performance. According to Deresky and Christopher (2011), the Arab culture has influenced the MTVN expansion in terms of regulatory challenges. In addition, the problem of handling the business in the Middle of its own calls for a certain risk for MTV. Thus, the wise resolution of the problem was the establishment of ties with the Arab Media Group, which had its own advantages and benefits from working side by side with the global network.
Despite the successful expansion of the network within the Arab countries, MTVN was also facing challenge in terms of conservative social culture that was prevalent in the Middle East, while the Western company was known for supporting for hip-hop explicit music culture where sexually explicit and provocative programs were shown. For Arab countries with its restrained culture, the newness of MTV was causing a problem.
However, before launching the channel, the company conducted a survey about what people want and that was a part of solution within such issue. The powerful media area within Arab countries has also created challenge to MTV with its local tastes. In terms of adapting the content to each of the Arab country, MTV should understand the peculiarity of each as what was acceptable within Dubai was not good for the other parts of Saudi Arabia. Within the Middle East, MTV would rather be associated with the Anti-Americans sentiments which were prevalent among the large section of Arab population.
Thus, the invasion to Iraq and support of arch enemy Israel were the major challenges for the company in its striving to launch the pro American channel. MTVN did not expect such conditions would impact its performance within the selected area. Instead, according to t Deresky and Christopher (2011), the company wanted to capture the target segment with the relevant content appropriate to people from 12 to 24 age group. Favorable demographic conditions have created an advantageous opportunities for MTVN to launch its channel within the Arab world.
However, behind such idea there was a lot of issues for the company in terms of thinking of the strategy. While the company wanted to be closer to the customers, it should take all necessary precautions to meet the needs of the local users. However, too much localization would decrease the brand of MTV and thus was one of the biggest disadvantages for the company. Partially MTV has solved such a problem by promoting videos and shows as edited versions in order to ensure the alignment with the local cultural dimensions.
Despite such efforts, the company has faced problems of competitiveness that was reflected in the face of numerous local channels, which knew their public better and understood their needs as well. Venturing into the Middle East was important for MTV as the way of searching for innovative market with its numerous music projects. Despite that desire, the company understood that the market of Middle East was difficult in the way business was done and due to its regulatory challenges, the company had to spend much time to get its head around it.
However, collaboration with the AMG has helped MTV to form a licensing arrangement which would bring the company ten million dollars annually for ten years, while the Arab company would obtain an access to the world class resources that will enable it to increase the visibility in the Arab media. The MTV channel was expected to act as the cultural unifying model for the Middle East region and the other part of the world. While for MTV Middle East was a new market with its opportunities and new customers, the company had all chances to succeed in its expansion strategy.
However, one should understand the main characteristic of the region, which is cultural heritage with its restrained and moral principles. In terms of westernization, the countries of Arab world would hardly find MTV the best partner that provides services to its people. On the other hand, it is the right move to the Arab world to be closer to other nations and show its people that cooperation with the world-known companies such as MTV is the opportunity to obtain its niche in the world entertainment world.
MTV positions itself as not only the entertainment provider, but also a company that would take up social issues and would try to contribute the Arab society through encouraging education and looking for the new solutions to the problems such as unemployment (Deresky & Christopher, 2011). References Deresky, H. and Christopher, E., (2011). International management: managing cultural diversity, Pearson Higher Education AU Feghali, E., (1997). Arab cultural communication patters, Int. Journal of Intercultural Rel. , Vol. 21, No. 3, Retrieved from http: //www. sba. pdx. edu/faculty/scottm/smaccess/DOHA/Class%201/Arab_cultural_communication_patterns_Feghali_1997.pdf Hafez, K., (n. d.).
The role of media in the Arab world’s transformation process, University of Erfurt, Retrieved from https: //www. uni-erfurt. de/fileadmin/user-docs/philfak/kommunikationswissenschaft/files_publikationen/hafez/inhalt899_bound_hafez. pdf Nurullah, A., (2008). Globalization as a challenge to Islamic cultural identity, The Internationsl Journal of Interdisciplinary social sciences, Vol. 3, No. 6