US to force Al Jazeera to disclose workings under foreign agents act

YouTube already forces each Al Jazeera video to disclose that they are funded by the Qatari government

epa06781968 (FILE) - A general view of a studio of the TV Channel AlJazeera in Doha, Qatar, during a visit of the German President Wulff (not pictured), in Doha, Qatar, 28 February 2011 (reissued 03 June 2018). 05 June 2018 will mark the first anniversary when a Saudi Arabia-led coalition of six Arab nations cut diplomatic and economic ties with Qatar, including a closure of air, land and sea borders. Qatar received a list of 13 demands which from Saudi Arabia and allies to comply with in order to see an end to the economic and diplomactic blockade against Qatar.  EPA/WOLFGANG KUMM  GERMANY OUT *** Local Caption *** 02608979
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Qatar-funded Al Jazeera and other foreign media outlets will soon be required by the US National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) to register as foreign agents.

Under the Foreign Agents Registration Act (FARA), individuals and organisations need to disclose their ties to foreign governments whether or not they are aiming to shape public opinion in favour of a foreign entity. Media outlets will be asked to file a report every six months with data about their structure and finances and make the report accessible to the public after 30 days.

For months now, a number of lawmakers, including Senator Ted Cruz, have been pushing for the legislation, arguing that some media outlets have tried to hide their agendas behind a facade of objective journalism. They say that this new legislation is part of a larger effort to force foreign-owned media to disclose their agendas in a bid for complete transparency.

Moscow-backed Russia Today America was required by the Justice Department to register as a foreign agent under the law in 2017; YouTube already forces each Al Jazeera video to disclose that they are funded by the Qatari government.

In an opinion piece for US newspaper The Hill, Anti-Defamation League CEO Jonathan Greenblatt argued that Al Jazeera was exporting hate against the Jewish people, Israel and the US.

In the US Al Jazeera's sister network Al Jazeera America closed just three years after its launch in August 2013 as a result of low ratings. Reports of low morale among staff, law suits, gender discrimination and alleged antisemitism also tarnished the nascent news channel.