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Flashpoints USA with Bryant Gumbel and Gwen Ifill Photo: Bryant Gumbel and Gwen Ifill
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THE MEDIA TODAY: TRUTH OR LIES? - 9.16.03
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About the Series
Flashpoints USA with Bryant Gumbel and Gwen Ifill is an innovative public affairs series from PBS that brings together both compelling examinations of critical issues and a dynamic pairing of two of the most respected names in journalism.


Television Poll Do Americans feel they can trust the media? View the results of the Flashpoints USA nationwide survey.





Media Frenzy

Featured PBS Resources
Online NewsHour: Miner's Miracle
Gwen Ifill discusses the recovery of nine trapped Pennsylvania miners with members of the remarkable rescue effort.

Online News Hour: Saving Private Lynch
A panel discusses whether the American media too willingly accepted the rescue of Private Jessica Lynch as presented by the Pentagon.

Online News Hour: Multimedia Appeal
News and entertainment outlets are competing for the first interview with rescued prisoner of war Jessica Lynch. Terence Smith reports on CBS's multimedia plan to tell her story.

Related Resources
CNN: Quecreek Miner Miracle
Full coverage with several stories, maps, videos, photos, and first-hand accounts.

Detroit Free Press: A Year Later: Miners, Town Says They Are Ready to Move On
Quecreek Miners reflect on the dramatic events following the "Miracle."

Pittsburgh Tribune-Review: Quecreek rescuer commits suicide
An article reporting the suicide of Robert T. Long, a surveyor whose role in the Quecreek Mine rescue earned him a movie deal.


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Mega-Media

NOW with Bill Moyers: Media Consolidation
NOW has been reporting on the topic of media ownership for over a year. See this Web site for the stories, and for the opportunity to weigh in on the NOW message boards.

NOW with Bill Moyers: Massive Media: Facts and Figures
The world of the mass media is shrinking. How a handful of companies came to exercise such control over the media is one of the astonishing stories of our time. See the facts, figures, and how they affect democracy and consumers.

Online News Hour: Merging Media
A Web site dedicated to exploring how relaxing FCC ownership rules have affected the media business, including background, updates on rulings, and a searchable geographic database of ownership.

Related Resources
The Center for Public Integrity: Well Connected
A complete Web site documenting national media ownership and FCC activities. This Web site's searchable databases let you input your zip code for a breakdown of radio, TV, and cable ownership in your area.

Journalism.org: All News Media, Inc.
A short article arguing the dangers of deregulation, and what would happen to communities if the FCC ownership rules were eliminated.

Journalism.org: Does Ownership Matter in Local Television News?
The debate around media deregulation revolves around the question: How to provide consumers with the highest quality information? See this study, conducted by the Project for Excellence in Journalism, for its findings on how ownership affects quality of newscasts.

MediaAccess.org
Media Access, a non-profit interest and telecommunications law firm, runs this complete Web site outlining the top issues in telecommunications. Each issue is explained thoroughly and supported with dozens of articles.

MediaChannel.org: Media Ownership Chart
A vivid, graphic representation of the six largest media companies and their holdings.

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The State of News

Featured PBS Resources
Fred Friendly Seminars: Disconnected: Politics, the Press and the Public
Is it a rumor or is it news? Who decides what stories get covered? Fred Friendly explores these questions with the help of a panel of experts.

Fred Friendly Seminars: What Drives Media Coverage
Video clips of top anchors speaking frankly about what drives the media and how standards are set.

Frontline: A Very Poor Job
The media loses credibility with its underreporting of Gulf War veterans' illnesses.

Local News
This national public television series offers an unprecedented inside look at an institution with tremendous power to help or hurt communities.

Media Matters: Journalists Under Fire
A Web site about the tension between the Pentagon and journalists as they cover the war in Afghanistan. Includes including a video clip, and link to "The Media at War," illustrating press access through history.

Related Resources
Editor & Publisher.com: Post-Blair, Newspapers Need Ombudsmen
A commentary following the scandal of reporter Jayson Blair and The New York Times.

Journalism.org: What to Expect from the Press
This "Citizens Bill of Journalism Rights" outlines what journalists believe they must offer, and what citizens have the right to expect. This document reflects five years of research seeking to define by consensus the most common principles of the profession.

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