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Fahad Al Butairi: Haha, Wait, What? at TEDxAjman (Full Transcript)

And we have been getting approached by the TV, the very people I was trying to contact at first. Woo! So now we are having talks with a bunch of major networks in the region to start some kind of comedy show, a little related to la yekther or the like. And I’m really hesitant at getting on TV, and there is a reason because there is this whole new media movement. And I’ve talked to a friend, a couple of friends of mine in Google Middle-East North Africa for some statistics to back my opinion. Basically, la yekther is in Arabic, it’s an Arabic-speaking show with English subtitles. And the reason a lot of people were saying: “why would you do that? In English, it would probably be funnier? Like other comedians on YouTube, Ray William Johnson, and you would get more fans that way.” I kind of doubt that because the top search term in Saudi Arabia is ‘YouTube’ in Arabic. That’s interesting also, 80% of Saudi queries on Google are in Arabic, and Saudi Arabia is also the third in the world when it comes to YouTube mobile playbacks, normal active population, it’s number one: they really like entertainment there.

Also the reason we use social media or social networking to promote the show as well as opposed to advertising on TV or other form of traditional media is that we have about 2.94 million Facebook users in Saudi Arabia and the website gets about 5,000 members everyday. So that is a substantial amount of people to reach out to and we’ve been getting 300,000 views each, which is a kind of equivalent to when normal active population to 7.32 million views, if we were in the United States. So that is pretty cool.

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And other statistics that are related to YouTube or internet versus TV in general are there is this statistics or there is a study that was done by an effective measurer group in the Middle East and North Africa, it covered majorly Egypt and the GCC countries and it shows that the internet retains a substantial audience throughout the whole day when traditional TV peaks in viewership at night or in the evening.

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However E-mail and social networking are the most popular online activities for the internet users in the Middle East and North Africa, and the last part, which is really interesting, of the respondents, 88% say — or that is almost 90% right? — say they access the internet daily, only 71% said they watch TV everyday.

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So to us, that is keeping us comfortable within the realm of YouTube but we are considering seriously moving into TV. And what I want you guys to get out of this, is if you think that you’re funny enough, good enough, you think you can produce content that’s good enough, get on YouTube. Get on YouTube and trust me, people will notice, people will reach out to you, and the very same people you were trying so hard to prove yourself to, will end up calling you and begging you to come. So that also goes back to the concept of mind shift, if you can put your mind to it, it can really happen.

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Thank you very much, and that’s it.

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By Pangambam S

I have been a Transcriber and Editor in the transcription industry for the past 15 years. Now I transcribe and edit at SingjuPost.com. If you have any questions or suggestions, please do let me know. And please do share this post if you liked it and help you in any way.