|2003-04-28 14:24, by Julie Solheim-Roe|
An urgent action from Peace Coalitions for April 28-May 5
The FCC is about to put vital control of media in this country in a very few hands - and quickly needs to be stopped.
Please click on MORE for complete action information.
Under "deregulation" rules proposed by the Federal Communications Commission, the already dangerous monopoly of TV and radio (and therefore of news, public thought and action) would dramatically worsen.The five corporations that own TV networks would be green-lighted to buy up each other. Local TV and radio stations would be swallowed by larger companies. Local newspapers and broadcast outlets would be allowed to purchase each other.
In a few years, Fox, General Electric and the radio giant Clear Channel - the most ambitious players - would potentially have an iron grip on the way the majority of the public gets its information. These companies have shown no interest in the public good, only in protecting their bottom lines while putting out news that is more deceiving than informing, when not actually right-wing propaganda - witness the leadup to and coverage of the Iraq war.
The U.S. Senate Commerce Committee is preparing to hold crucial hearings on the proposed FCC deregulation. FCC chair Michael Powell is promising a vote on the new FCC regulations by June 2.
The media giants have spent huge amounts to buy support in Congress and have cleansed their news of any critical reporting on the Bush administration. Breaking with the industry line, mogul Barry Diller recently told Bill Moyers deregulation would greatly increase oligarchic control of media.
Join the new Media Challenge! actions. Contact Congress and the FCC to stop this anti-democratic takeover. Here's how to do it:
Media Challenge Action 1 (essential):
Go to www.mediareform.net
Click to send your message to your Congressional Representatives and the FCC demanding they retain current media ownership rules.
The automatic message will also demand that Congress direct the FCC to extend its June 2 deadline and to release any proposed rule changes for public debate before acting on them. It will further ask Congress to conduct its own public hearings on any FCC rule changes.
Media Challenge! Action 2
Contact these members of the Senate Commerce Committee (essential, especially McCain):
Senator John McCain, Phone: (202) 224-2235; Fax: (202) 228-2862; firstname.lastname@example.org
Senator Frtiz Hollings, Phone: (202) 224-6121; fax: 202.224.4293; http://hollings.senate.gov
Senator Barbara Boxer, Phone: (202) 224-3553 or (415) 403-0100; fax: 415.956.6701; boxer.senate.gov
Contact these FCC Commissioners:
Chairman Michael Powell, 202-418-1000, email@example.com
Commissioner Kevin J. Martin: firstname.lastname@example.org
Commissioner Kathleen Q. Abernathy: email@example.com
Sample Letter or Comment to Congress folks and FCC:
Dear ___________(Senator or Commissioner):
Re: Upcoming FCC vote on media deregulation.
Further consolidation of the media in the name of "deregulation" must be halted. The media companies have failed in their public trust to provide unbiased information about most crucial issues, most notably the recent coverage of the war in Iraq.
As an American concerned about our democracy, I call on you to challenge the media conglomerates, to open the broadcast spectrum to a diverse range of journalists and opinions, and to reinstate the Fairness Doctrine. Oppose media deregulation.
Media Challenge! Action 3 (helpful).
Call or write network news bosses (see contacts below).
Tell them you want prominent daily coverage of the upcoming FCC vote, the most important media question in a decade.
Challenge them to report on their network's efforts to influence Congress and the FCC via campaign donations.
Challenge them to stop protecting the Administration and report on lies about Iraqi weapons of mass destruction exposed in the print media, on its environmental record, on the huge cutbacks coming in education, social and health programs and veterans benefits as money is shifted to campaign contributors for work in Iraq or to the wealthy in forms of new tax deductions.
ABC NEWS CHIEF David Westin. 212.456.6200. fax: 212.456.4292.... NEWS DIRECTOR Mimi Gurbst. 212 456 4050 fax.212 456 2795...... ABC SWITCHBOARD (ASK FOR NEWSROOM) 212.456-7777. NEWSROOM fax 212.456.2795
MSNBC NEWS CHIEF Mark Effron. 201.583.5101. fax: 201.583.5199 firstname.lastname@example.org ..... MSNBC NEWS DIRECTOR Alison Hawley. 201 583 5155. fax. 201 583 5512......MSNBC SWITCHBOARD (ASK FOR NEWSROOM) 201.583.5000 fax: 201.583.5590
NBC NEWS CHIEF Neil Shapiro. 212.664.4773. fax: 212.664.2264[ email@example.com ....NEWS DIRECTOR Thomas Ferraro 201 583 5231 fax. 201 583 5222....NBC SWITCHBOARD (ASK FOR NEWSROOM) 212.664.4444. fax: 201.583.5453
CBS NEWS CHIEF Andrew Hayward. 212.975.7825. fax: 212.975.7429. firstname.lastname@example.org ....NEWS DIRECTOR Marty Gill 212 975 6121 fax. 212 975 4114....CBS SWITCHBOARD (ASK FOR NEWSROOM) 212.975.4321 fax: 212.975.1893
CNN NEWS CHIEF Eason Jordan. 404.827.5111. fax: 404.827.4215. email@example.com...NEWS DIRECTOR Kim Bondy. 404 827 1500. fax. 404 827 1099...CNN NEWSROOM 404.827.1500 . 404.827.1500. firstname.lastname@example.org
PBS FACTUAL PROGRAMMING CHIEF Sandy Heberer 703.739.5036... NEWS CHIEF SANDY SOWERS 703-998-2150 email@example.com ....PBS SWITCHBOARD (ASK FOR NEWSROOM) 703.998.2600.
FOX NEWS CHIEF: John Moody. 212.301.8560. fax: 212.398.8726. firstname.lastname@example.org .... NEWS DIRECTOR Kathleen Ardleigh 212 3013186 fax. 212-301-5067....FOX SWITCHBOARD (ASK FOR NEWSROOM) 212.575.4670. fax: 212.301.8274
MEDIA CHALLENGE! is co-sponsored by: Projects4Peace, ICUJP (Interfaith Communities United for Justice and Peace), Neighbors for Peace and Justice, Coalition for World Peace, Global Guardianship Initiative, Code Pink for Peace, Peace on the Beach, Peace Warriors, LA International A.N.S.W.E.R., Not in Our Name, Global Women’s Strike and Southern Cal. Americans for Democratic Action, Americans Against War With Iraq
For more information about Media Challenge! and what the news networks are not telling you go to projects4peace.org and click on Media.
Other Valuable media democracy web sites:
Reclaim the Media, www.reclaimthemedia.org
Center for Digital Democracy, www.democraticmedia.org
Media Alliance, www.media-alliance.org
Media Tank, www.mediatank.org