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Preview: Minority Media

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Big Media is pushing the FCC to relax ownership rules again to give conglomerates more control over what Americans read, see, and hear. What most Americans don't know is that the FCC plans to fast track the rule changes and cut off public comment in December. Who wins and who loses?

On Friday, November 2 at 9 p.m. on PBS (check local listings), Bill Moyers Journal reports on the real-world consequences of media policy through the lens of how it affects minority media ownership in America.

Check Your Local Listings here and we'll see you on the blog after the show.


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Bless you for bringing up an important issue close to my heart. Minority journalists are out there but we don't get heard or exposed much.

Rod Amis

The Murdocracy and monopolization of news, and the intentional distortion, deletion, embellishment of information is not a new problem, but it is serious and worsening. How can people make informed decisions without being informed -fully informed! As far back as 1938, E.B. White, speaking about television programming in the U.S., made an uncanny prediction when he said, "I believe that television is going to be the test of the modern world... We shall stand or fall by television -of that I am quite sure." Forty years later in 1978, in a classic volume, Jerry Mander concluded, "Broadcast television is available only to monstrous corporate powers. What we are permitted to see on television is what suits the mentality and purposes of corporations." It is also important to view the incessant desire for power and control from a psychological perspective. Power and control are priorities of the ego. "Beware of the arrogance born of power." Americans have become so cold and indifferent to wars, poverty, violence and human suffering, largely due to the remissness and bias of the mass media
-owned and controlled by callous elitists and soulless corporations. We know that the three major tenets of Naziism were, nationalism, militarism and totalitarianism but we continue to turn our backs
-refusing to see that we are becoming what we most despised. In the end it can be likened to grasping a handful of water -the tighter you clench your fist- the less you end up with.

My wife and I drove nearly 2 hrs last June from W. Bethel to Portland ME, for the "Public Comment" session on Localism In Media, (the only one held in New England) wanting to comment on how we were being served by local media. We signed in well before the 4:00PM start and found that we were #95 on the list.

Despite what I heard as sincere intent stated by FCC Commissioners Copps and Adelstein last, the hearing was a travesty cynically perpetrated by commercial media and unwitting supporters, with “free speech” reserved for them only. We endured hours of 2 minute commercials by multiple paid reps from commercial media and many needy groups eager to ensure continued free air time for announcements and publicity.

The harangue was only rarely punctuated by independent media and most rarely by plain folks like us. (2-3) We had to leave at 10:20PM while #68 spoke because our dog was locked in at home. The public was effectively shut out from what was supposed to be our chance to speak. We heard later that sign-up lines started at 1:00PM, hardly convenient for working folks, those who drove long distances, or those as naïve about the process as we.

We The People were poorly served that night, but it provided a perfect example of big media greed and the urgent need for a broad range of independent, reliable sources for our vital information. The FCC must take measures to guarantee that our voices are heard and heeded.

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