Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Big Media Are Bad For Democracy

The segment of the Thursday, July 3rd episode will wind up focusing on the Big Media issue as led by Stop Big Media. We want to encourage as many viewers as we can to pick up the phone, call their Congressperson, and weigh in to say NO to the FCCs ruling expanding cross-ownership rights.

read more | digg story

Approps May Vote To Block FCC Cross-Ownership Rule

From David Hatch at CongressDaily

The House Appropriations Committee is expected to approve provisions Wednesday that effectively block the FCC's controversial relaxation of its media ownership rules, forcing newspaper and broadcast opponents to fight another day. The language would bar the agency from using its funds to implement the rule change, which permits the consolidation of newspaper and broadcast properties in the nation's top 20 media markets and in smaller cities under limited circumstances. Both industries have launched a coordinated effort to convince committee members to remove the restriction, inserted by House Financial Services Appropriations Subcommittee Chairman Jose Serrano, D-N.Y., during his panel's markup last week. The newspaper and broadcast industries would be forced to seek a remedy on the House floor or during conference negotiations on the spending bill if the section survives Wednesday's full committee markup. The language is part of a larger effort by members in both chambers to rescind the rule change, approved by the FCC's three Republican members in December. In May, the Senate easily cleared a "resolution of disapproval" authored by Sen. Byron Dorgan, D-N.D., that would nullify it, and Rep. Jay Inslee, D-Wash., has introduced a House counterpart.

"The modest step that the FCC took should not be upset," said John Sturm, president and CEO of the Newspaper Association of America, which is playing a lead role in the lobbying blitz. "It was a policy decision that was made after years ... of study, of field hearings," he said in an interview. Opponents are questioning the germaneness of attaching the provisions to a spending bill. "This looks to me like a committee not with jurisdiction over the Federal Communications Commission making what is in essence a policy decision," Sturm argued. Serrano is not a member of the House Energy and Commerce Committee, which has primary responsibility for regulating the communications sector, although he insists he has jurisdiction because his panel oversees the FCC's budget.

In a letter Thursday to Appropriations Chairman David Obey, Sturm outlined the NAA's arguments. "An amendment restricting the FCC from implementing its new rule would make it that much harder for newspapers to compete in a hyper-competitive media market while so-called 'new media' has the good fortune to flourish unencumbered," he wrote. He also noted that the FCC sought five years ago to lift the ban in the top 170 markets. But at the markup, Serrano said he believes "the loosening of media consolidation rules is detrimental to the goals of diversity in ownership and viewpoints, as well as to localism and independence in the news media." The National Association of Broadcasters is keeping a lower profile on the issue as newspapers -- many of which are struggling financially and downsizing -- play up their challenges.

Congress Moves To Stop Cross Ownership Rule

Rep. Jose Serrano says relaxing the media consolidation rules is detrimental to the goals of diversity in ownership and viewpoints, as well as to localism and independence in the news media

Congress has moved to prevent enactment of the FCC’s controversial new rule that would relax the broadcast-newspaper cross-ownership ban.

Last week, a House appropriations subcommittee voted to prohibit funding of the new rule. Earlier this year, the U.S. Senate passed a “resolution of disapproval” that would nullify the rule. If the defunding provision survives mark-up in the House — expected this week — it could achieve the same effect.

The FCC, led by chairman Kevin J. Martin, rushed the vote on the new rule in a pre-holiday action last December. Congress opposed it and warned Martin it would seek to undo his regulation at the time.

President Bush may ultimately veto the legislation. However, the actions by both bodies of Congress signal increasing hostility to easing or loosening any media ownership rules. Numerous consumer groups have criticized the rule change, and efforts to oppose it show no signs of diminishing.

“I believe that the loosening of media consolidation rules is detrimental to the goals of diversity in ownership and viewpoints, as well as to localism and independence in the news media,” said Rep. Jose Serrano, D-NY, chairman of the House Appropriations Financial Services Subcommittee, which passed the defunding provision.

The FCC voted to allow media companies to own both a newspaper and a broadcast station in one of the top 20 markets in the country.

Read More

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Latest Round of Consolidation

Back in December 2007 FCC Loosens Newspaper-Broadcast Cross-Ownership Limits-
Federal Communications Commission Voted Along Party Lines; Copps Expects Rule to Be Overturned

Read More

Friday, June 20, 2008

Florindo J. Troncelliti

MNN Independent Producer

Telephone: 212-222-1709

Daytime: 212-310-6784

Cellular: 646-508-9647


Summer 2008


How can Your News or Arts Program reach a potential audience of over one million viewers in Manhattan?

Can Your News or Arts Program obtain friendly, free publicity and gain recognition for your mission and public service?

Yes! Appear on an episode of the weekly MNN series “MEDIA MONITORS”, being produced to air this summer, from June 26 to September 18.

The public access television show “MEDIA MONITORS” will

  • promote public access, independent and public media by featuring “watchdogs” and other groups with a media public service mission;

  • We will examine current reporting in the corporate outlets as well as issues of ownership and control in commercial mass media in the United States.

  • Generally, the program will focus on specific issues to analyze the social and political impact of mass media in our society.

Each week, one 30-minute episode of “MEDIA MONITORS” will profile an activist or (mainly not for profit) group. The groups’ work will be portrayed and promoted through interviews, promotional video, and coverage of events.

Please let me know as soon as possible if you or someone at Your News or Arts Program would be interested in collaborating in the production of an episode of “MEDIA MONITORS” to showcase Your News or Arts Program.

Florindo Troncelliti


Bill O'Reilly on the "Heavily Liberal" Media

Special thanks to Media Matters for America for this footage.

This is exactly what Chomsky et al were talking about.

background slides

Monday, June 16, 2008

First Show To Air Thursday, June 26th!

The first episode of Media Monitors will air on MNN channel 56 at 7:30 PM on Thursday, June 26.

The show can also be viewed online through the streaming feature on the MNN website.

The first episode contains some footage provided by the Media Education Foundation, Media Matters For America, and the annual FreePress National Media Reform Conference.

Episode 1 includes music by Phil Ochs and a slideshow compiled by Producer, Florindo Troncelliti, on the first of six media filters identified in the Propaganda Model theory advanced by Noam Chomsky and Edward Herman in their classic work, Manufacturing Consent.

Ownership and Size constitute the first filter, which will be addressed in the last segment of the introductory episode of Media Monitors by a speech given by FreePress Chair, Professor Timothy Wu, at the recent NCMR in Minneapolis on June 7, 2008.

Friday, June 13, 2008

The Myth of the Liberal Media: The Propaganda Model of News

Here Chomsky, Herman and Lewis discuss some aspects of the Propaganda Model, particularly, "Ownership."

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

After the conference

The NCMR ended on Sunday afternoon, June 8 in Minneapolis.

It took me from 4:40 PM to 1:00 AM to get from the Minneapolis airport to LaGuardia. That's over eight hours. Normally, direct, it's about a 2 or 2-1/2 hour flight.

There's a lot of footage from the conference that I'll be working this summer to post to this blog and elsewhere on the web.

Media Monitors
MNN channel 56
Thursdays 7:30 PM

Meanwhile, the first episode of the show is on Thursday, June 26th, so I'm trying to get ready for that--using the footage from the conference and combining studio stuff.

Hopefully, a successful format will emerge.

Thank you, God, for the opportunity to get on this soapbox. Help me make it valuable for others.