A Muslim TV channel has been launched in North America by Sound Vision, a Chicago-based non-profit that is well known for its media productions and public relations work.
“Given the dire need for a genuine, mainstream Muslim channel and the opportunity that the pandemic lockdown recently presented, propelled the Sound Vision team to do a soft launch of a Muslim TV channel in April 2020,” Taha Ghayyur, Vice President of Sound Vision Foundation told AboutIslam.net. “Sound Vision’s team is backed by an engineering team with vast experience that includes launching more than 30 television channels and digital media in the USA and abroad.”
According to Ghayyur, “Muslim Network TV is where we will discover American and Canadian Muslims, their lives, their voices, their aspirations, and their struggle to be first-class citizens and faithful believers.”
“We believe that this initiative will be a significant stepping stone towards community development and empowerment, providing a communication platform that our community is missing.”
The intended audience of the English language channel are American and Canadian Muslims as well as their neighbours.
Since launching in April the channel airs 8 hours of original programming daily and the content is repeated 24/7.
Sound Vision is hoping that the TV channel will play a role in giving North American Muslims a voice and better representation on the continent.
“We have studied how the Muslims in the UK have greatly benefited with the presence of a Muslim television in their communities,” said Taha Ghayyur. “According to the British government just one Muslim channel reaches about 59% of all Muslims in the UK.”
“The 24/7 television has played a critical role in the development of Muslim voice, public relations, and representation in the British society.”
“On the other hand, the US and Canadian Muslims do not have a Muslim channel or significant professionally run media outlets,” Ghayyur noted. “The vacuum has been barely filled by a plethora of ethnic TV and radio shows and newspapers.”
Currently, a variety of programs are in development and a wide range of offerings will be rolled out over the next few months.
“A comprehensive programming plan is still being worked on. However, there will be a variety of programming, including but not limited to: Talk shows on politics, global events, and social justice; lifestyle shows; family shows; children’s programming; youth content; arts & entertainment; and religious programming.”
Muslim Network TV airs on Satellite Galaxy 19, covering the US, Canada, and Mexico reaching 50 million people. The channel is also on Amazon Fire TV & ROKU and it will soon be on Apple TV, with a total of 120 million reach.
Individual talk shows are streamed live on various YouTube channels and Facebook pages in the USA and Canada.
In Canada, the Muslim Network TV has launched a “Canada Today”, which is promoted to the Canadian Muslim community in partnership with DawaNet.