Hundreds of TV stations across the country have quietly merged newsrooms, getting around media ownership rules at the expense of the communities that depend on them for news and information.
Rather than competing for scoops, these stations are colluding to cut costs and reduce competition. What you get is one story – from one viewpoint, by one reporter, from one camera angle – broadcast on several stations.
A number of alternative models for the news — recent experiments, longstanding ventures and ideas yet to move beyond the blueprint phase — hold clues for what new press institutions and new forms of journalism may look like.
The airwaves belong to all of us. Broadcasters don’t pay
a cent for their use of this valuable public resource. They are required to do
only one thing in return: help fulfill the news and information needs of the
communities in which they broadcast.
America is unique in its nearly complete reliance on commercial media to present comprehensive information about government and politics, to hold political and business elites to account through critical commentary and investigative reporting, and to provide a forum for a broad range of voices and viewpoints.
Free Press, Consumers Union, New America Foundation and Public Knowledge sent a letter to the Senate Commerce Committee urging it to consider the usage of punitive data caps by broadband providers in its online video hearing scheduled for Tuesday, April 24.