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Al Gore is anti-fossil fuel unless he's selling to the Qatar for $100+ million.

Big Al (& I do mean big) has been really vocal lately that the World Bank and others need to actively lobby against fossil fuels.


It's ironic that Al decided a decade ago to sell his TV network to the government of Qatar whose main business is...drum roll....wait for it...producing oil. Apparently, Al is ok with fossil fuel so long as it puts money in his pocket.


Al-Jazeera buys Al Gore's Current TV

The Associated Press, 2013


Pan-Arab news channel has acquired network co-founded by the former vice president

Plans to rebrand the left-leaning news network

Al Jazeera shares Current TV's mission 'to speak truth to power,' Gore says


LOS ANGELES — Al-Jazeera, the Pan-Arab news channel that struggled to win space on American cable television, has acquired Current TV, boosting its reach nearly ninefold to about 40 million homes.


With a focus on U.S. news, it plans to rebrand the left-leaning news network that co-founder Al Gore couldn't make relevant.


The former vice president confirmed the sale Wednesday, saying in a statement that Al-Jazeera shared Current TV's mission "to give voice to those who are not typically heard; to speak truth to power; to provide independent and diverse points of view; and to tell the stories that no one else is telling."


Former Vice President Al Gore, Current TV co-founder, at the Television Critics Association Winter Press Tour on Jan. 13, 2012, in Pasadena , Calif.

The acquisition lifts Al-Jazeera's reach beyond a few large U.S. metropolitan areas, including New York and Washington, where about 4.7 million homes can now watch Al-Jazeera English.


Al-Jazeera, owned by the government of Qatar, plans to gradually transform Current into a new channel called Al-Jazeera America by adding five to 10 new U.S. bureaus beyond the five it has now and hiring more journalists.


Al-Jazeera spokesman Stan Collender said there are no rules against foreign ownership of a cable channel — unlike the strict rules limiting foreign ownership of free-to-air TV stations. He said the move is based on demand, adding that 40% of viewers on Al-Jazeera English's website are from the U.S.


"This is a pure business decision based on recognized demand," Collender said. "When people watch Al Jazeera, they tend to like it a great deal."


Al-Jazeera has long struggled to get carriage in the U.S., and the deal suffered an immediate casualty as Time Warner Cable, the nation's second-largest cable TV operator, announced it would drop Current TV due to the deal.


"Our agreement with Current has been terminated, and we will no longer be carrying the service. We are removing the service as quickly as possible," the company said in a statement.



Prior to Al-Jazeera's purchase, Current TV was in 60 million homes. It is carried by Comcast, which owned less than a 10% stake in Current TV, as well as DirecTV. Neither company announced plans to drop the channel.


Current began as a groundbreaking effort to promote user-generated content. But it has settled into a more conventional format of political talk television with a liberal bent. Gore worked on-air as an analyst during its recent Election Night coverage.


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MSNBC largely has outflanked Current in its effort be a liberal alternative to the leading cable news network, Fox News Channel.


Current hired former CNN Washington bureau chief David Bohrman in 2011 to be its president. Bohrman pushed the network to innovate technologically, with election night coverage that emphasized a conversation over social media.


Current TV, founded in 2005 by former vice president Gore and Joel Hyatt, is expected to post $114 million in revenue in 2013, according to research firm SNL Kagan. The firm pegged the network's cash flow at nearly $24 million a year.

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