Army of global journalists descends for US election
The 2008 U.S. presidential election has generated interest all over the world and hordes of international journalist have descended to cover the gran finale. It is the greatest show on the earth at the moment and media outlets are not leaving any stoen unturned to cover any theatrics. International media outlets have kept pace by providing in-depth coverage of the campaigns for readers at home.
An army of global journalists is descending on the United States to cover Election Day, November 4, in a reflection of unprecedented worldwide interest in the American presidential election.
"Our audience's interest in the US presidential election this time is definitely much higher than the last time four years ago," said Keiko Matsuyama, who is coordinating an 11-member team for Japan's TV Asahi's US vote coverage.
"Our viewers -- as well as we reporters -- are interested in the rise of the first African-American US president. Also, interest is mounting about US policies to address the financial crisis," she said.
TV Asahi, one of Japan's private broadcasters, said it will begin live coverage of the results from 10:30 am Japan time (0130 GMT) on November 5.
Democrat Barack Obama's campaign has accredited 1,500 journalists for an Election Night event at campaign headquarters in Chicago, home base of the 47-year-old Illinois senator seeking to become America's first black president.
"There has been a huge interest in Africa," said Constance Ikokwu, Washington correspondent from the leading newspaper This Day, in Nigeria.
"There is an emotional attachment between Africans and Senator Obama," she said.
Due to media fascination with the most prominent African-American candidate to date, as well as polls that show Obama leading his Republican rival John McCain, more journalists have chosen to base themselves in Chicago than in Phoenix, Arizona, where McCain serves as senator.
With so much going on in the world, everyone's attention is fixed at the US presidential elections. Al Jazeera has sent 50 reporters to towns in Virginia, Florida, Ohio and other swing states, According to a report at least 4,000 foreign journalists have come in USA to cover US election.
The whole planet is obsessed with the US presidential election - and the world's news media is poised to deliver the goods, subject to interpretation in more ways than one. It is one big cultural moment.
As of Monday more than 4,000 foreign journalists have been granted credentials to cover the campaign finale, according to State Department spokesman Keith Peterson.
"Interest is unprecedented," he said. "And every journalist is looking for their local angle. It's huge in Bangladesh. In France, 'Le Figaro' devoted five pages to the election. The Russians and Nigerians want to know how foreign policy will affect them, the Irish want to talk about the Irish ancestry of Sen Barack Obama on his mother's side."
The Vietnamese, on the other hand, want to hear about Sen. John McCain, a prisoner of war in Hanoi four decades ago, while the Kenyan audience is keen for insight about Mr. Obama's father, a native of the country.
The Voice of America (VOA) is providing live broadcasts from both countries.
That is just the beginning for the federal agency, which will be broadcasting worldwide in 45 languages - including Creole, Urdu, Mandarin and Albanian - to a potential audience of 134 million.
There will be satellite TV, plus online and network broadcasts. But some audiences will pick up the election returns via shortwave radio.