Community Media: Selected Clippings – 08/08/07

Does Public-Access TV Still Matter in the YouTube Age?
by Ken Picard
Seven Days (VT)

BURLINGTON — It’s hard to measure success in the unglamorous and often underappreciated world of public-access television. Chittenden Community Television (CCTV) channels don’t even register in the Nielsen ratings, and no one ever wins Emmys for their gavel-to-gavel coverage of city council meetings and water fluoridation debates.

But CCTV’s Center for Media and Democracy earned some much-deserved kudos two weeks ago when its executive director, Lauren-Glenn Davitian, took home the industry’s highest honor — the George Stoney Award for Humanistic Communication. The award, named after the “father of public-access television,” is given out annually by the Alliance for Community Media to a person or organization whose work promotes free speech, social action and public access to media outlets. Davitian, 46, was recognized at the group’s national conference in Minneapolis July 31 for more than 20 years of public service in promoting community-access television in Vermont.

Seven Days sat down with Davitian last week to talk about how far community-access television has come in two decades, as well as the many challenges it faces in the age of corporate consolidation, the Internet and video on demand. —>

Media reform movement goes on the offensive
by Joshua Breitbart
Civil Defense – a weblog

With a series of bills recently introduced in Congress, the media reform movement’s DC wing has finally gone on the offensive. The Community Broadband Act, the Broadband Data Improvement Act, and the Local Community Radio Act would break down significant barriers to expanding community media throughout the country. “Up to this point with a GOP Congress, it’s been all about blocking the bad stuff,” Free Press Policy Director Ben Scott said. —>

Community access TV under assault (HI)
by Sean McLaughlin
Disappeared News

The State of Hawaii has been engaged in a systematic assault on free speech through the offices of the Department of Commerce and Consumer Affairs, Cable TV Division. For the past decade, a disturbing pattern of arbitrary and capricious rulemaking from the DCCA’s Cable TV Division has consistently benefited Time Warner at the expense of Hawai’i consumers and the public interest.

The latest atrocity is the State’s mismanaged “RFP” process that places each of the Public, Education & Government (PEG) access provider organizations at risk of (increasing) State micromanagement and control. Instead of being strong and independent advocates for media justice, the PEG providers of free community access to media are on the defensive, forced to fight for survival.

Thankfully, the good people of Akaku: Maui Community TV have continued to stand up for truth, liberty and justice! Here’s the latest action from Akaku to PROTEST the State’s assault on community media! [ pdf ]

Congratulations to the Board and staff of Akaku, especially their CEO Jay April and attorney, Lance Collins! Hopefully, Akaku will find support in the larger community of people in Hawai’i who care about Media Justice!

Please let the Governor and your State legislators know: it is time to audit the DCCA’s cable regulation, stop the assault on free speech, support localism, and ensure independent community access to media!
Edmonds lights the way for broadband
by Diane Brooks
Seattle Times (WA)

For the technologically squeamish — those whose minds go blank when conversations turn to gigabytes and bidirectional pairs — computer consultant Rick Jenness offers a simple analogy.

“Visualize the amount of water you could push through a hypodermic needle. That would be roughly equivalent to dial-up speed” for an Internet connection, he said. “If you go to DSL or cable, it’s a tremendous amount more — it’s more like a garden-hose volume.” Now imagine water pouring through the Metro bus tunnel beneath downtown Seattle. That’s the equivalent speed for Edmonds’ new fiber-optic system, he said.

Edmonds is about to “light up,” as the techies say, a powerful connection with so much capacity for high-speed telecommunication — for the Internet, cable television, telephone services and unimaginable future inventions — that its value is a bit mind-boggling. —>
Black judge to be featured
by Ryan Strong
Chicago Defender IL)

A Chicago African American judge is set to appear on “Judicial Perspective,” a local television program airing on the Chicago Access Network Television. Cook County Circuit Court judge Pamela Hill Veal, along with three other judges, will be explaining how small claims courts help Illinois citizens. The show airs August 14 and 28 at 10:30 p.m. —>

compiled by Rob McCausland
Director of Information & Organizing Services
Alliance for Community Media

Explore posts in the same categories: broadband policy, community radio, media reform, municipal broadband, PEG access TV, public access television

Leave a Reply

Please log in using one of these methods to post your comment: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: