Last week’s Constitution
Day celebrations sparked a flurry of news and debates about the role of the
First Amendment in our society. On its surface, the First Amendment embodies
the sort of apple-pie American value that all people tend to agree with. It’s
fundamental to our democracy and has been our media’s defining characteristic
since the nation’s founding. However, what became clear throughout the course
of the week was that the First Amendment is a contested terrain, and the
technological and economic changes shaping our media are also shaping new
understandings and implications of freedom of speech and the press.
On Tuesday Comcast Executive Vice-President David Cohen
and Federal Communications Commission Chairman Julius Genachowski, along with
D.C. Public Schools Chancellor Kaya Henderson and D.C. Mayor Vincent Gray,
announced a plan to provide low-cost broadband to families eligible for the
National School Lunch Program.
It happened with little fanfare, but another nail was banged
into the coffin of the unlamented AT&T/T-Mobile merger last week when
attorneys general from seven states joined the Department of Justice’s lawsuit
to block the deal on antitrust grounds.
UPDATED 9/16/11: Now with additional campaign contribution data.
Maybe it’s the water in Washington that’s making people silly. Or maybe it’s AT&T’s hefty campaign spending. Either way, something’s got people believing AT&T when it says that up is down, green is red, 1 + 1 = 3 — and that its proposed takeover of T-Mobile would be good for America.
is like a piñata at a children’s party. It’s an easy target; everyone’s jumping
in line to take a bash at it; we’re all waiting with baited breath to watch it
explode. Sure, we won’t get any candy, but the result will be just as sweet: no
When Hurricane Irene approached my home in Massachusetts, and my family’s on the
coast of Connecticut, I received a powerful reminder of how much we rely on our
cellphones and the Internet. We used both tools to track the storm and prepare
ourselves for a worst-case scenario, which luckily didn't come to pass.
The Department of Justice gave wireless customers an extremely
valuable gift last week when it filed suit to block the
AT&T/T-Mobile merger, a $39 billion boondoggle that would've made
AT&T richer and more powerful at the expense of everybody else.