In April, in what seemed at first to be an April Fool’s joke, a federal appeals court in California ruled that noncommercial public broadcasting stations should be allowed to air political ads. The ruling struck down a longstanding ban on such ads, arguing that it infringed on free speech. The court upheld the ban on commercial ads.
The summer of 2012 will be remembered for the day Katie Holmes came to her senses, the Olympic swim-off between Michael Phelps and Ryan Lochte … and the moment when information about televised political ads went online.
This American Life exposed a new low for local news in this week’s episode, “Switcheroo,” which revealed how U.S. media corporations have outsourced local news to the Philippines. The story focuses on a company called Journatic, which produces “local” news for dozens of newspapers around the United States. The problem is, they don’t use any local reporters to do it.
Raise your hand if you think our current media system covers the issues you care about and gives you the information you need to better understand the world around you. If your hand is up, lucky you. If your hand is down, you’re not alone.
No, that's not a new corporate slogan, but the future facing Internet users everywhere.
Cable giants like Comcast and Time Warner have come to dominate information access in the United States. And they're using this new power to squeeze out competitors and remake new media in their old image.
For anyone online that means a future of fewer choices among broadband providers and less control over the digital diet that's fed across their networks.