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MediaWatch:Blogs
MEDIA BUZZ
New York Times Launches Baghdad Bureau Blog
Interactive Blog to Showcase Exclusive Reports, Multi-Media Features, Q & A
02/28/2008 00:38 AM ET
The biggest, costliest western newspaper bureau in Baghdad is significantly bolstering its output with the launch of a blog featuring multi-media reporting packages, dispatches from Iraqis, and question-and-answer sessions with Times correspondents in Iraq.

The latest of The New York Times's 54 blogs is entitled "Baghdad Bureau: Iraq from the Inside."

The Times's Baghdad bureau, which is reported to cost more than three million dollars a year, hosts a superb team of foreign and Iraqi journalists, fixers, translators, drivers, security guards, and others.

The debut of Times's blog follows in the footsteps of two respected but less ambitious blogs produced by McClatchy's Baghdad bureau.

In the days ahead, IraqSlogger will add headlines and links from The Times's Baghdad blog in the fourth column of the IraqSlogger home page, where you can also find an RSS feed for one of the McClatchy Baghdad bureau blogs.

Here is The Times's announcement of its blog:

Baghdad Bureau Blog Launches on NYTimes.com
Wednesday February 27, 4:43 pm ET
The New York Times Provide Readers with Insights into Daily Life Outside of the Green Zone

NEW YORK--(BUSINESS WIRE)--The New York Times announced today the launch of Baghdad Bureau: Iraq from the Inside (http://baghdadbureau.blogs.nytimes.com/), a new blog supplementing The Times’s Reach of War coverage by providing insights and stories about daily life in Baghdad and what it is like living outside the Green Zone.

"We are excited to launch Baghdad Bureau and hope it will give readers a more vivid, intimate sense of ordinary life in Iraq, as well as the military and political themes we will continue to explore in our coverage," said Susan Chira, foreign editor, The New York Times.

Baghdad Bureau will address the daily challenges that confront the city's inhabitants, such as the difficulties of traveling around the country and the experience of going through a security checkpoint. The blog will also invite Iraqis to write about their personal journeys, such as their decisions to stay or leave the country and the feeling of running into the aftermath of a car bomb explosion.

Baghdad Bureau will regularly feature:

* Taking Questions, a forum answering as many questions as possible on a wide number of issues about Iraq, its people, the United States military, the private contractors and the media attempting to cover it all; * Slideshows and videos from the staff; * Videos submitted by readers living in Iraq; and * “What We’re Reading,” shared items from other blogs.

Baghdad Bureau is a collaborative blog produced by reporters, photographers and Western and Iraqi staff who live in the Iraqi capital outside the Green Zone. Eric Owles, chief multimedia producer, NYTimes.com, will be the lead contributor for the blog. Previously, Mr. Owles oversaw foreign news coverage for The New York Times Web site from 2002 to 2007. Before that, he was the senior producer of national, science, Washington and metropolitan desks. He arrived in Iraq in January 2008.

"Eric's work in Baghdad, both for the blog as well as the news report as a whole, will give readers a multidimensional view of the lives and struggles of the Iraqi people and the American military," said Jim Roberts, editor of digital news at The New York Times.

Listed below are some of the other contributors to blog.

James Glanz is the Baghdad bureau chief for The New York Times. Originally working as an astrophysicist, Mr. Glanz joined The Times in 1999 as a science reporter. In 2004, he became a Baghdad correspondent for the newspaper, and he was appointed bureau chief in August 2007.

Alissa J. Rubin is the deputy Baghdad bureau chief for The New York Times. Ms. Rubin grew up in New York City and worked in New York, Kansas and Washington, D.C. before moving overseas. She has reported abroad from the Balkans, Pakistan, Afghanistan and western Europe. She first went to Baghdad in April 2003 and has spent nearly four years reporting in Iraq.

Stephen Farrell is a Baghdad correspondent for The New York Times. Mr. Farrell grew up in London, where he joined The Times of London in 1995. In 2000 he moved to South Asia to cover India, Pakistan and Afghanistan. He was a Middle East correspondent for six years, based in Jerusalem and Baghdad, which he first visited in 2001. He joined The New York Times in Baghdad in June 2007.

Eros Hoagland is a photographer working for The New York Times in Iraq. Mr. Hoagland was raised in California, and he now lives in the San Francisco Bay area. This is his third reporting trip to Iraq since 2004 and his second rotation with The New York Times.

Solomon Moore is a correspondent for The New York Times in Iraq. He previously covered Iraq in 2005 and 2006 as a reporter for the Los Angeles Times. He returned to Baghdad for The New York Times at the end of 2007. Mr. Moore has also covered conflicts in Liberia, Uganda, Angola and Israel. Before his most recent assignment in Iraq, he covered criminal justice in the United States. Mr. Moore is based in Los Angeles.

Jehad Nga is a photographer working for The New York Times in Iraq. Mr. Nga was born in Kansas and raised in Tripoli, Libya, and London. He later moved back to the United States and attended U.C.L.A. He has previously worked as a freelance photographer for The Village Voice in Gaza and the West Bank. He began taking photos in Iraq for The New York Times in April 2003. Mr. Nga lives in Kenya.

Richard A. Oppel Jr. is a Baghdad correspondent for The New York Times. Mr. Oppel grew up in North Carolina and worked in Pennsylvania, Texas, New York and Washington, D.C. before reporting from Iraq. His first trip to Baghdad was in 2003, and he has been reporting continuously from Iraq since October 2004.

NYTimes.com continues to reach a large, educated and affluent audience. It is the most visited newspaper site in the U.S. with an audience of 20.5 million unique users (January 2008 – Nielsen Online).

The New York Times Company (NYSE: NYT - News), a leading media company with 2007 revenues of $3.2 billion, includes The New York Times, the International Herald Tribune, The Boston Globe, 15 other daily newspapers, WQXR-FM and more than 50 Web sites, including NYTimes.com, Boston.com and About.com. The Company’s core purpose is to enhance society by creating, collecting and distributing high-quality news, information and entertainment.

This press release can be downloaded from www.nytco.com

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