Reality TV shows prosper on Arab TV channels

Last Updated: May 07, 2013, 14:15 PM IST

Dubai: The number of shows that were locally-produced by the stations in the Arab world is higher than licensed-format-based reality TV shows, it has been revealed.

According to an Arab Advisors Group report analysing the reality TV shows broadcast on ten Arab FTA satellite channels for the season 2012/2013, sixteen reality TV shows were broadcast on the selected FTA satellite channels in 2012 while 13 shows have aired or will air in 2013.

Spurred by the liberalisation and the boom in satellite TV supply and viewership, many channels in the Arab TV industry recognise the need for offering quality content to maintain their attraction to viewers and advertisers.

Reality TV`s attraction lies in its relative novelty to audiences as well as its lower costs of production as participants are mainly regular people and not highly paid movie and TV stars.

The report provides analysis and profiles of 18 major Arabic reality TV shows on ten FTA satellite TV channels during the period from January 2012 till February 2013, including the reality shows in production to be aired thereafter (the season 2012/2013).

The report points out the Arabic production companies that have played a role in the Arabic reality TV market.

"Out of the 18 reality TV shows aired in 2012/2013, 12 are original shows rather than licensed formats from global companies. Moreover, channels are increasingly employing social media as a tool for increased interactivity with their audience. 12 out of the 18 reality TV shows have online presence on social media portals," Hiba Rabadi, Arab Advisors Research Analyst, said in the report.