Rich Media, Poor Democracy
Featuring Robert McChesney & Mark Crispin Miller
If a key indicator of the health of a democracy is the state of its journalism, the United States is in deep trouble. In Rich Media, Poor Democracy
, Robert McChesney lays the blame for this state of affairs squarely at the doors of the corporate boardrooms of big media, which far from delivering on their promises of more choice and more diversity, have organized a system characterized by a lack of competition, homogenization of opinion and formulaic programming.
Through numerous examples, McChesney, and media scholar, Mark Crispin Miller, demonstrate how journalism has been compromised by the corporate bosses of conglomerates such as Disney, Sony, Viacom, News Corp, and AOL Time Warner
to produce a system of news that is high on sensationalism and low on information. They suggest that unless citizen activism can reclaim the commons, this new corporate system will be characterized by a rich media and an ever impoverished, poor democracy.
Sections: Who Is Sumner Redstone & Why Should We Care? | Who Gave the Airwaves Away? | Welcome to The Revolution? | But What About The First Amendment? | What Happened to the News?
Robert W. McChesney is the Gutgsell Endowed Professor in the Department of Communication at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. In 2002, he co-founded Free Press, and served as its president until April 2008. McChesney hosts the Media Matters
weekly radio program every Sunday afternoon on NPR-affiliate WILL-AM. McChesney has written or edited 17 books. His most recent books are The Political Economy of Media
and Communication Revolution
Mark Crispin Miller
Mark Crispin Miller is a professor of media studies at New York University, where he also directs the Project on Media Ownership. His writings on film, television, advertising and rock music have appeared in numerous journals and newspapers, including The Nation
and The New York Times
. In 1988, he published his first book, Boxed In: The Culture of TV
, followed by Seeing Through Movies
, Mad Scientists: The Secret History of Modern Propaganda
, Spectacle: Operation Desert Storm and the Triumph of Illusion
, and The Bush Dyslexicon
. His newest book is Cruel and Unusual: Bush/Cheney's New World Order
Executive Producer: Sut Jhally
Producers: Loretta Alper & Margo Robb
Editor: Jeremy Smith
Praise for the Film
"[Opens] up questions of ownership and conglomeration. Would serve as a solid introduction to any course on media criticism."
- Michelle Stewart | Transformations