YouTube-based programming and the Saudi youth: exploring the economic, political and cultural context of YouTube in Saudi Arabia

Daoudi, Omar (2018) YouTube-based programming and the Saudi youth: exploring the economic, political and cultural context of YouTube in Saudi Arabia. PhD thesis, University of Glasgow.

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This thesis addresses YouTube-based programming in Saudi Arabia. It focuses on the bottom-up, professionally generated content (PGC) produced by the Saudi youth exclusively for YouTube between 2010 and 2016. It explores the economic, political and cultural context of YouTube-based programming and is aimed at understanding how the programme makers operate within such a restrictive political and media environment, and the interaction between the content creators, the audiences and the Saudi government.

The thesis examines the perspective of the content creators by utilizing ten semi-structured online interviews, and the view of the Saudi audience by employing seven semi-structured offline focus group interviews with twenty-nine participants in Glasgow, Scotland. The interviews were conducted and transcribed in Arabic, then translated into English.

This analysis leads to the emergence of four primary themes: limited political and cultural empowerment for young Saudis offline; strong financial empowerment for the content creators; the government as the most powerful actor in the Saudi media scene; and the relevance of the content to the Saudi audience as the main driver for the popularity of YouTube-based programming.

The analysis provides insights and implications for policy and practices, arguing that the concept and practices of cultural policy are humble in Saudi Arabia and that there is an urgent need for a political decision to establish a nationwide cultural policy to promote and govern the arts and culture. This policy needs to incorporate both online and offline creativity, including YouTube-based programming.

Item Type: Thesis (PhD)
Qualification Level: Doctoral
Additional Information: Supported by funding from the Centre for Cultural Policy Research (CCPR) at the University of Glasgow.
Keywords: YouTube based programming, professionally generated content (PGC), youth, Saudi Arabia and Arab media.
Subjects: H Social Sciences > HM Sociology
T Technology > T Technology (General)
Colleges/Schools: College of Arts > School of Culture and Creative Arts
Supervisor's Name: Raymond, Prof. Boyle and Melanie, Dr. Selfe
Date of Award: 2018
Depositing User: Dr. Omar Daoudi
Unique ID: glathesis:2018-9004
Copyright: Copyright of this thesis is held by the author.
Date Deposited: 15 May 2018 14:00
Last Modified: 19 Jun 2018 07:25

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