The National Association of Broadcasters Radio Show kicks off in San Diego in less than two weeks and media activists of all stripes will be ready for their arrival. A coalition of groups has organized a counter-convergence: Media emergenC. Continue reading “Media EmergenC: Confronting the NAB in San Diego”
Madison’s alt-biweekly free newspaper, the Wisconsinite, folded up shop last month after a scant dozen issues. The group that founded and produced the paper included members of the Madison IMC collective (but was most definitely not a print project of the IMC itself). It was positioned to the left of the city’s tired alt-weekly, which now targets “affluent hipsters” compelled to spawn. Very respectably progressive, the Wisconsinite had some meaty stories on interesting stuff, was fairly well-laid out, and was even printed on higher-quality newsprint stock than the Isthmus.
Then Madison’s dominant daily announced it would be starting a free “alt-weekly” of its own, and the state’s largest paper shortly followed suit. It is apparently a growing trend in the mainstream newspaper marketplace to use the “alt-weekly” trick in hopes of luring a younger demographic – both for their disposable income and to entice them into the habit of reading a paper, something going lost on the under-25 crowd. Continue reading “Farewell, Fair Wisconsinite: We Hardly Knew Ye”
A couple of clarifications from an observer on the scene at the microradio protest outside Clear Channel’s corporate headquarters: the transmitter used by “KRRR” was ~10 watts and could be heard for at least a couple of miles. More power to ya!
Also, the station reappeared during the FCC’s Localism Task force meeting yesterday and operated completely unmolested, despite mainstream media reports to the contrary. Houston IMC now has photos of the pirate crew (and their clever subvertising) outside CCHQ.
As for the hearing itself, “to call [it] a zoo would probably be too kind,” reports one LPFM broadcaster who stood in line for more than three hours just to get 60 seconds at the mic.
So you may have heard there were some “protests” over “free trade negotiations” in Miami this week. Thursday and Friday, to be specific. Feedback from around the country seems to suggest little to no news coverage of what happened.
What happened in Miami involved the worst display of police violence unleashed on a demonstration in recent U.S. history. In fact, there really wasn’t much “demonstrating” taking place: those who were able to get into fortified downtown Miami were simply maneuvered around by phalanxes of riot police until their gatherings were broken up – usually with the use of excessive force, which included various plastic/rubber bullets, tear gas, pepper spray (both in spray and capsule form, shot from shotguns), taser guns, and the always-useful wooden club.
Snatch squads were in full effect – activists were abducted off the street by police dressed as protesters, whose only sign of true identity were the tasers they pulled out on alarmed bystanders. Continue reading “Miami Cops Run Amok on Protesters: Media Misses Most”
Last weekend’s global anti-war protests were streamed live by various Independent Media Centers around the world, and voices for peace bypassed corporate media filters to give reports straight from the streets.
Many pirates picked up the various IMC feeds and rebroadcast them to their communities: the impromptu network had affiliates the U.S., U.K., Italy, the Netherlands, and Germany, to name those we know of. All of the rebroadcasts took place on the FM dial. Could’ve been bigger – maybe next time.
Miscellaneous site news: a third gallery of media collage is now online. This one features works that use adverts as ammo and poke the eyes of consumer culture.
It has been a busy couple of days since we arrived into town…the Seattle Independent Media Center has been an awesome hub of activity, serving as a workshop, reception space and newsroom. At any given time you can find people sawing lumber, soldering equipment and making stories.
The Reclaim the Media! events got rolling in earnest last night, and they have been well-attended. The schedule of panels, workshops, rallies and concerts is an ambitious one, and kind of works against everyone meeting en masse in a single location. Rallies at Freeway Park have been relatively sparsely attended, but that will probably change as the weekend progresses.
I have been working hard trying to follow the Mosquito Fleet of microbroadcasters who are here in quite a significant contingent, but it’s dicey because operating locations are scattered throughout the metropolitan area and those running the operations are understandably low-key about disclosing information. Needless to say, though, that there’s people from all over the country here, and they’re all fired up about firing up. I’ll have lots more about this when all is over and the immediate risks have passed. Continue reading “Seattle is Radioactive!”
I know there hasn’t been much new up on the site lately, but I have a good excuse. Madison, WI has been the site of the U.S. Conference of Mayors’ national annual convention this past weekend. As a member of the Madison Independent Media Center, I’ve been heavily involved in covering the event and related street actions.
From the 10-plus pages of stories that have been filed about the event and the live internet radio webstream that we had up, it has been incredibly busy, yet incredibly exhilirating. I finally slept for 17 hours yesterday. Continue reading “Where I've Been”
It might not look like much, but there are several sections of the links library now online. Most importantly, the stations and schematics pages are functional again! We’ve gathered tons of news and new links during the short hiatus offline, and we’ll be doing massive updates and additions once the existing content is available.
As an active member of my local Independent Media Center, we’re f*ckin busy right now preparing for the upcoming U.S. Conference of Mayors annual meeting and the expected protests that will surround it; this all happens a week and a half from now. It has been taking up a lot of energy, and keeps me away from more work here.
Police are playing up the threat of an invasion of “violent anarchists” from out-of-town, but that’s just an excuse to get militaristic and whoop some ass. They don’t call it “police violence” for nuthin’…
One of the things mainstream radio in America has all but abandoned is journalism. It’s only been a half-century since the advent of television, and from then to now is the time it’s taken for radio news to all but disappear.
Radio news departments were some of the first casualties in the industry’s downward spiral into consolidation and cost-cutting sparked by the passage of the Telecommunications Act of 1996. It costs a lot of money (read: salaries) to produce local news, and offers some of the lowest return on investment (read: ad rates).
As an independent media movement took root at the end of the last century, activists rediscovered radio journalism. A portable minidisc recorder makes it possible for one person to archive a large amount of sound on a matchbook-sized medium; regular cassette tapes are cheaper still. And the MP3 file system makes coverage of events and interviews easy to produce and distribute online. Continue reading “Guerrilla Radio News”
Sounds of the Street – Click here
Photo Gallery – Click here
In September 2000, extraordinary events took place in San Francisco, where the National Association of Broadcasters held its annual Radio Convention. For the first time, people took to the streets to voice their concerns with the state of the media.
As rapid consolidation in the American radio industry drastically reduces the diversity of voices on the dial, listeners are noticing the change. More ads, less information. A booming bottom line, but nary a pipsqueak of real news and issues we need and can use.
It’s a dangerous trend. When the people can’t communicate with each other on a mass scale through a free and democratic media, then just how free and democratic can a society be? Continue reading “NAB Meets Media Democracy”