Blog

Welcome to the Free Press blog! We post several times a week on everything from Internet access to free speech to media mergers, so check back often to see what we’re up to.

  • Shake-Up: Where Earthquakes and Media Policy Collide

    August 24, 2011

    I grew up in California, spent most of my life there and experienced many earthquakes, including the deadly 6.9 Loma Prieta quake of 1989. So the 5.8 earthquake that rattled Washington, D.C., Tuesday was not (you’ll pardon the pun) as earth-shaking for me as it was for many people who felt the ground beneath them move in ways utterly new and foreign.

  • FCC to AT&T: Is That Your Final Answer?

    August 24, 2011

    Last Thursday five AT&T employees and twelve of its outside attorneys, from six different firms, got on a conference call with thirty-two officials from the Federal Communications Commission and the Department of Justice. All told there were close to 50 people participating in the meeting.

  • Did AT&T Lie to Your Representative?

    August 23, 2011

    Earlier this summer 76 House Democrats were misled by AT&T.

    They signed on to a letter circulated by Rep. G.K. Butterfield (D-N.C.) that was so packed with AT&T talking points and spin that it’s worth wondering who really drafted the letter.

  • Covert Consolidation Undercuts Supposed Growth in TV News

    August 23, 2011

    Two recent reports paint a rosy picture of local TV news. Stations are launching new programs, jobs are coming back and revenues are up. Bolstering these reports are stats from the Radio Television Digital News Association, which called 2010 a record year for local news.

    I just wish that were the whole picture. However, neither of these reports fully grapples with the impact covert consolidation — in which a station signs away control of its newsroom to a competitor — is having on the media ecosystem.

  • Thousands Urge Apple to Pull Censorship Patent

    August 19, 2011
    For the tech world, this has been the summer of patents.
  • Free Speech Beyond the Turnstiles

    August 19, 2011

    I have spent most of the week poring over news stories, blogs and commentary on last week’s decision by Bay Area Rapid Transit officials to shut off cellphone service to quash planned protests on its trains and platforms.

  • Whack a Murdoch

    August 18, 2011

    Rupert Murdoch's problems — including possible illegal behavior in the U.K. and the U.S. — won’t go away no matter how hard he tries to cover them up.

    On Tuesday,  British authorities released a letter that exposes a massive News Corp. cover-up of illegal phone hacking. This is a serious scandal, but we aren't afraid to have a little fun at Murdoch's expense:  

    Today we're launching a game — Whack a Murdoch — that helps you vent your anger about News Corp.

  • AT&T Accidentally Tells Truth, Shoots Self in Foot

    August 16, 2011

    Free Press and other opponents of the AT&T–T-Mobile merger had reason to cheer last week when a damning document AT&T filed with the FCC was accidentally posted on a public site.

  • Toward a Media Transparency Movement

    August 10, 2011

     The movement for government transparency has taken huge strides in the last two years. More and more government data -- everything from police reports to budget spreadsheets -- is being made available for journalists and citizens to inspect and report on. The need for such transparency speaks for itself: a government that is funded by and dedicated to the service of the people should be accountable to the people for what it is doing to serve them.

  • Broadcasters Cash in with Political Ads

    August 9, 2011

    Broadcasters are giddy with excitement, and it has nothing to do with a stellar fall lineup. A new report by Moody's Investors Service predicts that political advertising sales will continue to soar, breaking records in 2012 and flushing broadcasters with exorbitant revenues. And even in the face of a possible double-dip recession, broadcasters are comfortable that the money will keep rolling in

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people + policy = Positive Change for the Public Good