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Al Jazeera Digital takes home 35 Telly Awards

Al Jazeera Digital takes
home 35 Telly Awards

Tribune News Network
Al Jazeera Digital won a record 35 medals, including seven gold medals, in the 41st annual Telly Awards recently. The awards, spanning 14 categories in the “Video across all screens” competition, signaled the diversity of Al Jazeera’s online offerings as video continues to drive innovation and find new expression on digital platforms.
AJ Close Up, a documentary short film boutique led by Andrew James Phillips, won five Gold and six Silver medals, including a Gold Medal for Best Online Web Series and four Gold Medals for Missing Sons of Mexico, Offside Girls of India, Fight Club of Bolivia and Out of Sight in Kashmir.
The video explainer series Start Here, hosted by Sandra Gathmann, also won the News & Information category for her coronavirus series and Fork the System, the online food series hosted by producers Joi Lee and HyoJin Park, won a gold medal in the online documentary category for Korea: a divided country, a united table.
AJ+ English also scooped five Silver medals, including for the Untold America episode Life as a turban-wearing American Trucker, hosted by Shreen Khan and an episode from the multiple award-winning Direct From series hosted by Dena Takriri, Why is the Navy Exploding Bombs in Puerto Rico?.
True to Al Jazeera Media Network’s core value of “giving voice to the voiceless,” the 35 wins spanned 14 categories and from across the globe, telling stories of the underrepresented, forgotten, and misunderstood.
Newsfeed ‘s recent Webby Award winner, Rohingya through the eyes of Al Jazeera’s journalists, also won a Silver Medal in the Social Video, Impact category and a Bronze Medal in the Social Video, News and Information category.
The 2019 Emmy-nominated virtual reality documentary boutique, AJ Contrast, has emerged with two Silver Telly wins for Still Here, a virtual reality-enhanced immersive project that looks at the challenges facing African American women who, after years in prison, are struggling to re-enter gentrified New York City neighborhoods. Still Here was premiered at the 2020 Sundance Film Festival and won the B2C Editorial Team of the Year at the 2020 Drum Online Media Awards.
“The playground for video-driven media has never been more competitive,” said Dr Yaser Bishr, Executive Director of Digital at the Al Jazeera Media Network. “I’m proud of our teams for demonstrating extraordinary diversity and innovation and for continually pushing the boundaries to create new shows that inform with heart. Our engagement numbers and awards across multiple categories indicate that our cutting edge AJ Digital teams continue to deliver news and information while reflecting the needs of our global audiences.”
Speaking to a diverse pool of 2020 entries against the backdrop of the Covid-19 pandemic, Telly Awards Managing Director Sabrina Dridje echoed the need to tell the stories of the under-represented. “It is now more important than ever to give a platform to those creators who bring us global stories,” and to strive for “more equal playing fields for the marginalised,” she said.
The other categories included CBS Interactive (Telly Company of the Year), BBC Global, American PBS, Sony Music, Disney, ESPN Films, HBO Latin America, Conde Nast, Warner Bros., and NASA.