Thoughts on Big Media…

By Brent McConnell posted Feb 17, 2015 04:29 PM


Thoughts on Big Media…


Call me old-fashioned, but what happened to the long ago days of the Walter Cronkite’s, Howard Kurtz’s and other objective reporters alike? Often, I turn on the tube, flip the newspaper (or kindle), listen to the radio or surf the web and wonder to myself, “What is this junk?” Mediums are dominated by celebrity gossip, Casey Anthony and “reality” TV “supaaastars” (Molly Shannon pun). Network news from far left to right are filling us with nonessential news and it’s supporting a country of misinformed citizens.

Molly Shannon is a Superstaar!

What happened? I think it’s the nature of media ownership in America being dominated by fewer and fewer corporations.  In 1983, 90% of media was owned by about 50 corporations.  In 1992, that number dropped to 24. By the turn of the century, this number was down to a staggering six (General Electric, Walt Disney, News Corp., Time Warner, Viacom and CBS). With so few people influencing what we as viewers are subjected to in media, such corporations dominate the dialogue and influence publics toward biases. AND unfortunately most of us do believe what we see on t.v.

While the FCC decided to veto policies that would allow for even more corporate domination of media in 2007, this was a small victory in the grand scope as the fact remains the same:  the concentration of media in the hands of so few corporations disallows for competing ideas, creates misinformed publics and a culture that seems to believe Jersey Shore, Case Anthony, the Royal Wedding and Teen Mom are more important than Global Warming, jobless rates and what appears to be a Double ‘not-fun-dip’ recession.

Not so fun this stuff.

A lot of Americans have no idea about the VIP nature of our media.  In fact, in speaking with friends and colleagues, I noticed most were clueless of the rapid consolidation of media in America.  What’s even more staggering is the few that were aware of this issue were almost universally against it.  How come you never hear about media fairness in the news?  Probably because media owners push the conversation away to other less significant topics.  “Isn’t it ironic?  Don’t you think…?”

And, yea, I really do think…

In this global world in which we live, I believe we should take a step backward:  media ought to be locally owned, locally produced and represent the people around them.  With the advent of social networking tools like Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, etc., now more than ever people have the ability to do so.  However, it seems to me most people use these avenues to recycle or aggregate information seen through television, newspaper, publishing and radio.  Frequently, top trending topics are so superficial that it’s sickening…take a look for yourself.

I urge people to seek out the facts.  Don’t just accept the information projected to you on the nightly news.  Media fairness is an issue that needs to be a topic of discussion this upcoming election year.  The implications of so few hands controlling the information (or lack of) we receive are far more reaching than one simple blog post can fathom.  It affects us in all walks of life from the products we buy, the music we listen to, the food we consume and most importantly, the politicians we vote for (other post to come).

Freedom isn’t inherited, it’s not something just given to us…it’s earned.  Inform your neighbor, friends and family. Be the bridge between the disconnect, be the change you want to see in the world, model for the younger generations who will one day be the future….who knows you may be the front-runner?

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1 comment



Jun 25, 2015 11:11 AM

What a great Blog!