Before I begin to analyze the use of multimedia in Al Jazeera America (AJAM from now on), I would like to add a few more thing to my last post. I wish to integrate my Google Trends analysis with some other sites that show web traffic to a specific site. On the COMPETE at compete.com I was able to find another graph that shows the number actual visitors to the Al Jazeera’s Home page.
As you can see the graph provides quick glance of the audience that visits the site, with the two variables of time and number of visitors. From another website, ALEXA, at alexa.com, I gathered an enormous amount of information, not only on the number of visitors, but also on their country of origin, their gender, age and education. This information is gathered by the website, through surveys issued by Alexa. The two most interesting pieces of information I gathered from the web site are that:
- The Al Jazeera America website is considered slow, taking an average of 2.95 Seconds to open, 22% slower than other sites.
- Bounce Rate ( that is the percentage of visits to the site that consist of a single pageview) :52.20%.
- Daily Pageviews per Visitor: 2.22
- Daily Time on Site: 3:56
From this data we learn that many viewers spend very little time on the site, possibly just to scan through the Home page and get a sense of what is going on. Otherwise they might be directed there by inbound links. Also, and this might be useful for the next part of my analysis, the average time a viewer spends on the site, is just abut enough to watch a video or news broadcast.
Video. You cannot live stream news on AJAM. According to a New York Times article:
“Since distributors discourage their partners from giving programming away on the Internet, Al Jazeera will have to block American users from the live streams of its programming… “
This means that the only videos available are the ones that have been uploaded on the site. For example, today AJAM is offering footage on cattle theft rates ( of all things!! ). If you wish to try out the video quality yourself, here it is, check out what Sheriff Alfred has to say on cattle thieves:
The reasoning behind this choice is puzzling. When I first looked at the website, I admit the articles and the written word occupied a position of dominance. The company claims to aim at an audience of young educated people:
“There is so much interest in […] young demographic, and our core competitive advantage is appealing to them. They are global thinkers interested in international news”
Yet that seems hard to believe when placing TV ahead of the Web. (Interested in this subject? check out this article on Fast Company). Probably these young techies would prefer to have access to news on the web, as it was on the Al Jazeera England site. When the latter abruptly interrupted the possibility of live streaming, AJ was flooded with complaints. Still, AJAM decided to bring one thing across the Atlantic, that is the Monday trough Friday show THE STREAM. It provides an online community and television show that includes social media and citizen journalism. I have not had the opportunity to check it out but it sounds interesting, and will make sure to give you some feed back next time.
An overview; the videos are quick and in high definition but it seems odd that AJAM would not insist on providing live streaming on its website.