To the ballot box, citizens! The new format of the French-speaking Lebanese media outlet, L’Orient-Le Jour

To the ballot box, citizens! The new format of the French-speaking Lebanese media outlet, L’Orient-Le Jour

April 8, 2022

L’Orient-Le Jour sought to develop a new narrative form to cover Lebanon’s general election, which will be held on 15 May. The editorial team has been working alongside Samsa Africa to develop this new format since February.

The number of people subscribing to podcasts has been increasing incessantly in recent years. Nevertheless, they are still a rarity among the Lebanese media. There is therefore a real opportunity, in terms of seeking and retaining an audience, to be one of the first to offer this format. It is engaging, inspiring, conveys emotion and can be listened to at any time. It is fully in line with new content consumption habits. Last but not least, it can be coupled with a video, which remains the most heavily consumed format on the web. A perfect production optimisation for the editorial project defined by L’Orient-Le Jour.

A series of eight video podcast episodes will be produced in the coming weeks. Candidates from civil society and traditional parties will see how their manifestos hold up under questioning from the Deputy Chief Editor of L’Orient-Le Jour, Anthony Samrani. The aim of these major interviews, which will last around 40 minutes, is to explore the strategies of each of the candidates. With the election just weeks away, the first episode was broadcast on 31 March on L’Orient-Le Jour’s YouTube channel, and attracted more than 1100 views in 24 hours.

Support was provided in nine areas:
- Launch of the series;
- Support for the performance of the initial technical tests associated with editorial preparation, production and editing;
- Support for the production of the pilot episode and the preparation for the interview, as well as its recording, editing, mixing, design and post-production;
- Support for the creation of a version with English subtitles, feedback at various stages; - Support for production in audio podcast format;
- Support for publication on YouTube;
- Support for the drawing up of a social media strategy;
- Support for production follow-up;
- Support for the achievement of milestones and the final report at the end of the service.

This collaboration will help to develop a creative journalistic offer in the French language on the media outlet’s website, on their mini site dedicated to the elections, on their YouTube channel and, finally, on the media outlet’s social media pages (Facebook, Twitter and Instagram).

Innovation MediaLab is supporting three Algerian and Lebanese digital media outlets: 24h Algérie, an Algerian general news site, Labneh&Facts, a digital Lebanese site for 25–35 year olds (in French) and Yomkom, a digital Lebanese site aimed at young people (in French and Arabic). Since January 2022, Innovation MediaLab has also been supporting the Tunisian and Lebanese digital media outlets, Jaridaty and L’Orient-Le Jour.