For decades, the factors that decided what noteworthy stories would not find their way into print or on the air came down to the media’s ignorance, laziness or from advertising restraints. How else can one explain the many years that passed before the tobacco, auto and junk food industries became the subject of regular consumer reporting? For too long, the explosive material for good journalism in these and other areas had remained hidden in plain sight.
In college, Economics 101 is often described as the social science discipline that deals with the production, distribution and consumption of goods and services. MIT Economist Paul Samuelson liked to focus on scarcity, or more specifically, the allocation of scarce resources. “Abundance” was always a pretty word with an idyllic connotation for Professor Samuelson. I often wonder why there weren’t a few classes about the real-life consequences of abundance, along with scarcity and people’s material welfare.
Updated: May 16, 2014
April 25, 2014
Timothy Karr, 201-533-8838
WASHINGTON — The Wall Street Journal reports that Federal Communications Commission Chairman Tom Wheeler will on Thursday propose a new set of rules issued in response to a January federal court decision that tossed out the agency’s prior open Internet rules.
The new rules would allow Internet service providers to charge an extra fee to content companies for preferential treatment, guaranteeing their content reaches end users ahead of those that do not pay. The rules are now circulating among the FCC commissioners and are expected to be be voted on at the next public FCC meeting on May 15. Continue reading
[Please scroll down to find the Action Alerts and sign them.]
The U.S. military wants it, and so does Corporate America–which is why we should beware
BARACK OBAMA is headed to Asia for a four-country tour designed to revive diplomatic and economic attention on the region that Washington’s imperial strategists believe is crucial to the future.
Obama will travel to Japan, South Korea, Malaysia and the Philippines, the U.S. government’s main allies in the region. But looming over each stop and every meeting will be a country that definitely isn’t on the presidential itinerary: China. Continue reading
Tell the FCC: Restore Net Neutrality
Jan. 14, 2014
An appeals court just dealt the latest blow to the open Internet. The court struck down the Federal Communications Commission’s Open Internet Order because of the questionable legal framework the agency used when it adopted its Net Neutrality rules in 2010.
Sen. Diane Feinstein and a horde of members of Congress of both parties want to decide who is and who isn’t a reporter. Sen. Feinstein says a “real” reporter is a “salaried agent of a media company.”
She mentions the usual suspects—New York Times, ABC News. She dismisses part-time staff. She dismisses freelancers. She dismisses those who write, often without pay, for the hundreds of alternative publications, and often break news and investigative stories well ahead of the mainstream media. She dismisses anyone who, she says, “have no professional qualifications.”
Updated: added another video report.
The White House
Office of the Press Secretary
For Immediate Release
July 06, 2012
– – – – – – –
ASSIGNMENT OF NATIONAL SECURITY AND
EMERGENCY PREPAREDNESS COMMUNICATIONS FUNCTIONS
By the authority vested in me as President by the Constitution and the laws of the United States of America, it is hereby ordered as follows:
The tumultuous managerial shakeup at National Public Radio headquarters for trivial verbal miscues once again has highlighted the ludicrous corporatist right-wing charge that public radio and public TV are replete with left-leaning or leftist programming.
Ludicrous, that is, unless this criticism’s yardstick is the propaganda regularly exuded by the extreme right-wing Rush Limbaugh and Sean Hannity. These “capitalists” use the public’s airwaves free-of-charge to make big money.
December 21, 2010
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Date: December 21, 2010
Contact: Jenn Ettinger, 202-265-1490 x 35
WASHINGTON — By a 3-2 vote Tuesday, the Federal Communications Commission approved new rules intended to prevent Internet providers like AT&T, Comcast and Verizon from acting as gatekeepers on the Web. The rules, however, heavily favor the industry they are intended to regulate, and leave consumers with minimal protections. Democratic Commissioners Mignon Clyburn and Michael Copps voted with Chairman Julius Genachowski, while Republican Commissioners Robert McDowell and Meredith Attwell Baker voted against.
Dec. 21, 2010
When Obama was running for office three years ago, he pledged to support the principle of a free and open internet, saying, “I will take a backseat to no one with regards to net neutrality.” Fast-forward to today and the FCC chair that Obama appointed is leading a vote that could end net neutrality. Today’s pivotal vote will decide on a new set of regulations that critics say will create a two-tiered system for the internet. We speak with Craig Aaron of the media reform group Free Press.
Aug. 6, 2010
Verizon & Google Enter Reported Deal for Tiered Internet Use, Is Net Neutrality in Jeopardy?
The internet and telecom giants Verizon and Google have reportedly reached an agreement to impose a tiered system for accessing the internet. The deal would enable Verizon to charge for quicker access to online content over wireless devices, a violation of the concept of net neutrality that calls for equal access to all services. The deal comes amidst closed-door meetings between the Federal Communications Commission and major telecom giants on crafting new regulations. [includes rush transcript]