Blog

  • Shareholders Put Pressure on AT&T, Sprint and Verizon

    March 29, 2012

    At the end of 2010, the Federal Communications Commission passed a set of “Open Internet” rules. The agency claimed these rules made Net Neutrality — the notion that we should be able to connect to any website or application without carrier interference — the law of the land.

    Not quite.

    The FCC’s rules contain a series of significant loopholes. Most importantly, they fail to protect wireless Internet users from carriers like AT&T and Verizon that seek to block our freedom to connect at will.

  • Beware of Verizilla!

    March 27, 2012

    Two new videos document the dangers of an approaching wireless-cable monster known in some circles as “Verizilla.”

    This monster would rise out of a toxic deal between Verizon and a cable cabal of Comcast, Cox and Time Warner Cable. The group wants to divvy up the wireless Internet market and get rid of any meaningful competition among the companies involved.

  • Civic Health and Public Journalism

    March 26, 2012

    The annual Pew State of the News Media report is like a yearly physical exam for journalism in America. This year the prognosis is mixed, at best. Newspapers are still raking in double-digit operating margins, but after years of consolidation they are over-leveraged with debt that is cutting into their profits. There are more hours of news on local TV, but much of it consists of rebroadcasts, meaning there is actually less original reporting. Tablets and mobile devices are driving significant new traffic to news sites, but monetizing that traffic is still difficult.

  • Let the Sun Shine In

    March 26, 2012

    Earlier this month, we issued a challenge to our members. We asked them to take a day off from work, visit their local television stations and … rifle through their filing cabinets.

    It’s not the most glamorous gig, but over 100 people all over the country came forward to volunteer. The public files our television stations are required to maintain can give us insights into the inner workings of the political ad machine. They can also help us understand how each media outlet serves — or fails to serve — its community.

  • Making Community Radio a Reality

    March 21, 2012

    This is the story of what happens after a bill becomes a law.

    In this case it is the story of the Local Community Radio Act. Or as we like to call it, “The Little Bill That Could (Even When It Seemed Like It Couldn’t).”

  • Stop Verizon's Backroom Deal

    March 19, 2012

    Your cable and wireless companies are getting into bed together.

    Verizon has struck a sweetheart deal with a cartel of cable companies — including Comcast, Time Warner Cable and Cox Communications — in which they’ve agreed to stop competing against one another. The new plan? To divvy up the spoils of the growing mobile market.

  • Sixteen Thousand People Send Messages to Journalists Arrested During Occupy Protests

    March 14, 2012

    How should we respond to the unprecedented rise in attacks on freedom of the press we are witnessing worldwide?

    From foreign correspondents and citizen reporters being targeted and killed in Syria to new cases of press suppression and intimidation here at home, recent months have provided a series of stark reminders about the risks journalists take to bring us the news we need.

  • Free Press on the Road

    March 12, 2012

    This month, Free Press staff will zigzag across the United States to meet with activists and allies, give talks, inspire action — and listen and learn alongside others engaged in the movement to change our media. Among the cities in our itinerary are Washington, D.C., Boulder, Colo., Los Angeles and Detroit. But that’s not all …

  • Happy Sunshine Week!

    March 12, 2012

    Welcome to Sunshine Week — a time to stand up for the importance of open government and freedom of information. And what better time than the beginning of Daylight Savings Time, when winter shadows are receding and the sun begins to usher in new life.

    But as we all know, the metaphor is aspirational. In reality, darkness still obscures information that the public needs to participate fully in our democracy. That’s why, in honor of Sunshine Week, Free Press volunteers all over the country will be shining their own lights on their local media outlets. Starting today and continuing all week long, our volunteers will be paying visits to their local TV stations to inspect their public files.

  • The Misinformation Machine

    March 8, 2012

    Dirty politics is a growth industry with few happy customers. In the run-up to Super Tuesday, television viewers nationwide had to endure an onslaught of negative and deceptive political ads.

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people + policy = Positive Change for the Public Good