- Overall, we rate Gulf News Questionable based on poor sourcing, a lack of transparency, the promotion of state propaganda, and a few failed fact checks.
Reasoning: Poor Sourcing, Propaganda, Lack of Transparency, Censorship, Failed Fact Checks
Bias Rating: RIGHT
Factual Reporting: MIXED
Country: United Arab Emirates
Press Freedom Rating: LIMITED FREEDOM
Media Type: Newspaper
Traffic/Popularity: High Traffic
MBFC Credibility Rating: LOW CREDIBILITY
Launched in 1978, Gulf News is an English-language daily based in Dubai, UAE. In 1984, Gulf News was acquired by Obaid Humaid Al Tayer, the late Abdullah Al Rostamani, and Juma Al Majid. In 1985, they formed the Al Nisr Publishing Group. In 1996, Gulf News launched its online edition.
Gulf News is published by Al Nisr Publishing LLC focusing on the Emirates, News, Business, Technology, Sports, Entertainment, Lifestyle, and more. Al Nisr Publishing LLC is also the owner of getthat.com, a portal for classified buying or renting properties.
Funded by / Ownership
Gulf News is published by Al Nisr Publishing LLC, comprised of Al Nisr Distribution LLC, which is under the umbrella of GN media. Ownership is not transparent; however, our research reveals some of the board members of Al Nisr Publication as Juma Al Majid whose son Khalid Al Majidsuch oversees his father’s companies.
Analysis / Bias
In 2022, Reporters Without Borders ranked United Arab Emirates (UAE) 138/180 in their Press Freedom Index, stating that “the authorities can censor local or foreign publications if they criticize domestic policies, the economy, the ruling families, religion or the UAE’s relations with its allies.” Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum is the Vice President and Prime Minister of the United Arab Emirates (UAE) and ruler of the Emirate of Dubai.
In review, Gulf News publishes articles with headlines that have strong, emotionally loaded language, such as “Too close for comfort: Homosexuality in schools.” They state the “rise in the number of same-sex relationships in UAE schools a growing concern.” A quote from the article reads, “Authorities are trying to curb deviant behavior to better reflect the traditional conservative laws of the UAE.”
Gulf News mostly focuses on positive coverage of Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, “Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid praises the patriotic and humanitarian stands of Sheikh Mohammed Bin Zayed” and lacking in any criticism of him “Learn lessons of success from Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid.”
Gulf News reports selectively when the issue doesn’t resonate with the Ruler. For example, news related to his wife, where BBC reports “Princess Haya: Dubai ruler’s wife in UK ‘in fear of her life”; however, Gulf News does not report this.
Gulf News often sources through quotes and utilizes Emirates News Agency (WAM) which is the official news agency of the United Arab Emirates. They also republish Reuters news stories. When covering world news about the USA, they cover the former Trump administration with a negative tone “COVID-19: Trump suggests injecting disinfectants to fight coronavirus”. In general, this is a source that promotes pro-State propaganda and is not always factual.
Failed Fact Checks
- An Indian man who was bitten by a snake then bit his wife because he wanted them to ‘die together.’ – Unproven
- These images have previously circulated in reports about an elderly Chinese couple who had unrelated health problems – Misleading
- A man sued his bride after seeing her without make-up for the first time. – False
Overall, we rate Gulf News Questionable based on poor sourcing, a lack of transparency, the promotion of state propaganda, and a few failed fact checks. (8/29/2016 ) Updated (M. Huitsing 12/09/2022)
Last Updated on May 24, 2023 by Media Bias Fact Check
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