Media

Posted by Sheldon Rampton on March 26, 2002

Now that community radio advocates have regained control of the Pacifica Radio Network, they are discovering that the outgoing Pacifica managers "treated the network like a trough," in the words of current acting executive director Dan Coughlin. In addition to racking up huge personal expense bills and handing themselves "golden parachute" severance packages, the former managers ran up millions of dollars on attorneys and PR firms.

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Posted by John Stauber on March 07, 2002

National conferences of the media literacy movement have been funded by Channel One, AOL/Timer Warner, and other media giants trying to define, co-opt and profit from media literacy. Now, "a new, national organization is forming that will tackle the challenges brought on by our current global media system. ... Join other dedicated and passionate individuals that want to make an impact upon media education at the ACME Summit 2002." The summit will be held in Albuquerque, New Mexico, October 18-20th, and the Center for Media & Democracy is among the supporting organizations.

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Posted by Sheldon Rampton on March 04, 2002

NBC has hired a PR firm that specializes in crisis management to help deflect mounting criticism over its decision to carry hard-liquor ads. Shepardson, Stern & Kaminsky will help the network fend off criticism from groups like the American Medical Association, which recently ran a full-page ad in the New York Times, saying that NBC has "let down America's children."

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Posted by John Stauber on February 26, 2002

Rick Berman started ConsumerFreedom.com with $900,000 from the Philip Morris tobacco company. He is waging a corporate-funded smear campaign against public health, environmental and animal welfare organizations and the non-profit foundations that fund them.

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Posted by John Stauber on February 20, 2002

The stranglehold that a dozen giant corporations now exert on media in the US will tighten even more in the wake of a federal court ruling. The ill effects of corporate media control such as mind numbing content, self-censorship to serve advertisers, neglect of minority opinions and dissent, sensationalized if-it-bleeds-it-leads news, plagiarism of PR as 'news,' are all set to worsen. Schiesel and Carter write in the New York Times, "Investment bankers, start your engines.

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Posted by Sheldon Rampton on January 29, 2002

For $15,000, Canada's "Business Television" program will produce a puff piece about a company's "philosophy and future vision," "innovative aspects" and "specific products or services, as well as successes and challenges." It will broadcast the show as news, without any information in the credits to inform viewers that money has changed hands.

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Posted by Sheldon Rampton on January 20, 2002

"Proving that irony is alive and well post-Sept. 11," observe Steve Rendall and Peter Hart, "a book deriding the national press corps for its flagrant liberal bias has been the subject of enormous attention in the same mainstream media that, the book argues, suppress conservative views." In their critical review of Bernard Goldberg's book, Bias, they note that "right-wing media watchdogs ...

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Posted by Sheldon Rampton on January 19, 2002

"By pandering to anti-Arab hysteria," writes Eric Boehlert, "NBC, Fox News, Media General and Clear Channel radio disgraced themselves -- and ruined an innocent professor's life." University of South Florida computer science professor Sami Al-Arian received death threats and lost his job after conservative Fox commentator Bill O'Reilly revived discredited, years-old allegations from self-styled terrorism expert Steve Emerson th

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Posted by Laura Miller on January 15, 2002

"Some of the nation's largest corporate advertisers, seeking greater control over television, are proposing to create their own shows to air on the major broadcast networks," the Los Angeles Times writes. With network advertising revenues down, some TV executives are open to corporate sponsored shows. Both Ford Motor Company and Coca-Cola are developing TV shows to promote their products. Ford's "No Boundaries" premieres on the WB network in March. Coca-Cola's "Stepping Stones" is set for NBC's summer season.

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Posted by Sheldon Rampton on January 01, 2002

Mark Crispin Miller examines the growing power of the world's 10 largest media multinationals: AOL Time Warner, Disney, General Electric, News Corporation, Viacom, Vivendi, Sony, Bertelsmann, AT&T and Liberty Media. "The media cartel that keeps us fully entertained and permanently half-informed is always growing here and shriveling there, with certain of its members bulking up while others slowly fall apart or get digested whole," he observes.

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