FCC Ruling Fuels Movement for Media Democracy

John Nichols writes in the Nation on-line that today's "3-2 vote by the Federal Communications Commission to remove barriers to corporate consolidation of control over the media capped a process that ... bent the rules to serve the special interests. ... In addition to provoking passionate opposition ...


Feeding the Rage

In a candid interview about being a conservative reporter, Weekly Standard senior writer Matt Labash explained to why conservative media has become so popular. "Because they feed the rage," Labash said. "We bring the pain to the liberal media. I say that mockingly, but it's true somewhat. We come with a strong point of view and people like point of view journalism. While all these hand-wringing Freedom Forum types talk about objectivity, the conservative media likes to rap the liberal media on the knuckles for not being objective.


FCC Favors Industry Over Consumers

"The nation's top broadcasters have met behind
closed doors with Federal Communications Commission officials more than
70 times to discuss a sweeping set of proposals to relax media ownership
rules," the Center for Public Integrity writes. "The private sessions
included dozens of meetings between broadcasters and the agency's five
commissioners and their top advisors. A June 2 vote is scheduled on the
controversial proposals, which critics fear will touch off a major new
round of media consolidation. In contrast, FCC officials held five


PR Trade Group Calls To Postpone FCC Ownership Vote

The leading PR trade association, the Public Relations Society of America, is calling on its 20,000 members to organize a "broad grassroots initiative to persuade the Federal Communications Commission to postpone its scheduled June 2 vote on the biennial review of regulations for broadcast ownership." The group, which represents government, corporate, institutional and individual public relations practitioners, says it advocates postponement of the FCC vote "until the Commission proactively encourages full public participation in an open, r


Middle East TV To Take Cues From American Cable News

The White House is dedicating $60 million to the proposed Middle East TV Network. The Broadcasting Board of Governors, a federal agency, will oversee the network, which will be headed by former CNN Washington bureau chief William Headline. "The BBG is currently doing market research in several Muslim countries that will determine the network's programming," PR Week writes. "Government officials are insisting that the network's purpose is not to influence Muslims with US propaganda, but to bring independent journalism into a region more accustomed to government-controlled press.


"Wal-Martizing" the Media

"Critics say the chance of hearing unique and offbeat voices in broadcasting could drop dramatically even as the number of outlets proliferates when the Federal Communications Commission votes on media ownership rules in about a week," reports Reshma Kapadia. "Like the Wal-Mart supercenters that have crowded out the mom-and-pop stores on Main Street and changed the U.S. retail landscape, the five major media owners could tighten their grip on programming, squeezing out local and independent views."


Stossel's Political Promotion

John Stossel has been promoted to co-anchor of ABC's 20/20 TV program. According to a source within the network, "These are conservative times... the network wants somebody to match the times." Fairness and Accuracy in Reporting (FAIR) points to Stossel's history of "bungled facts and twisted logic" and asks if "a record of credible and accurate reporting" shouldn't be more important than "matching the perceived political climate."


The Media Monopoly

"A majority of the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) intends to
ratify a sweeping plan to weaken or eliminate rules that limit the size
and power of media companies," media watchdog Fairness & Accuracy in Reporting writes. Among other things, the changes would allow a company to own a newspaper and
a TV station in the same market, and would significantly increase the number
of TV stations one company can own. The FCC is scheduled to vote June 2 on the proposal.



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