Community Media: Selected Clippings – 12/04/07

South Africa: Children Take On the Media for the Eighth Time
Biz-Community (Cape Town)
AllAfrica.com
12/04/07

CAPE TOWN – Young people from around the world will converge on Robben Island to take part in the eighth annual Bush Radio Media Kidocracy Konfrence (MKK 2007), 5 – 10 December 2007. The main theme of MKK 2007 is the celebration of rights and it comes at the time of the 18th anniversary of the UN Convention on the rights of the child.

Some of the topics identified for discussion by the children at this year’s conference include virginity testing and circumcision, child trafficking, cultural identity, global warming, human rights and sexuality.  The conference aims to enable children and youth to identify the social issues pertinent to themselves and their peers as well as to talk about the power of the media – and how to use it…

The conference culminates with a live broadcast from the island, on the International Children’s Day of Broadcasting (10 December 2007), on Bush Radio 89.5fm.   —>
http://allafrica.com/stories/200712040344.html
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Senate committee votes to delay plan to let broadcasters own newspapers in same market
Associated Press
International Herald Tribune
12/04/07

WASHINGTON: A Senate panel on Tuesday approved a bill that would put the brakes on a plan to let broadcasters own a newspaper in the same media market.  The Senate Commerce Committee, on a voice vote, approved the Media Ownership Act of 2007, which would delay passage by the Federal Communications Commission of any new media ownership rules for 180 days, or possibly longer, depending on whether studies on the impact of media consolidation on local communities and minority ownership are completed.

“The last thing we need in this country is more concentration in the media,” said Sen. Byron Dorgan, D-N.D., who is a sponsor of the bill along with Sen. Trent Lott, R-Miss.  The vote may be too little, too late for opponents of media consolidation, however. The FCC is expected to vote Dec. 18 on a proposal by FCC Chairman Kevin Martin that would eliminate the ban on one company owning a radio or television station and a newspaper in the same community in the nation’s 20 largest markets.   —>
http://www.iht.com/articles/ap/2007/12/04/america/Media-Ownership.php
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FCC target of House panel’s investigation
Chairman Kevin J. Martin is accused of ‘possible abuse of power.’ A hearing is set for Wednesday.
by Jim Puzzanghera
Los Angeles Times (CA)
12/04/07

Two key House lawmakers announced Monday that they were investigating the Federal Communications Commission, accusing its chairman of “possible abuse of power” and a failure to operate fairly and openly in handling proposed cable TV and media ownership regulations.  “Given several events and proceedings over the past year, I am rapidly losing confidence that the commission has been conducting its affairs in an appropriate manner,” Rep. John D. Dingell (D-Mich.), chairman of the Energy and Commerce Committee, wrote to FCC Chairman Kevin J. Martin.   —>
http://www.latimes.com/business/la-fi-fcc4dec04,1,4417226.story?coll=la-headlines-business&ctrack=2&cset=true
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City stays firm against new cable providers
by David Demille
The Spectrum (UT)
12/04/07

The Hurricane City Council is holding firm against requests from cable providers to create limited telecommunication franchises within the city.  Over the course of several meetings in the past month, the council has come to a consensus on wanting citywide build-out agreements with cable companies before allowing franchise agreements.   —>
http://www.thespectrum.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20071204/NEWS01/712040309
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Changes ahead for public cable channel
by Charles Slat
Monroe News (MI)
12/04/07

In mid-January, public access cable TV might not be as accessible for many Comcast cable customers in the Monroe area.  The cable TV giant is switching its public access, education and government (PEG) channels to a digital broadcast format on Jan. 15 and moving them to broadcast channels accessible only to subscribers who have digital service or pay for a set-top box to capture the signals.  It means programs such as the live TV broadcasts of Monroe City Council meetings and public access programs such as “The Lotus Ginkgo Show” and “The Local Sportsman Show” could be left with a smaller viewing audience.   —>
http://www.monroenews.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20071204/NEWS01/112040041
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TV could go dark
by Jim Winter
The Monroe Times (WI)
12/03/07

Earlier this month, the state Senate passed a cable competition bill. The Assembly passed the bill before that.  Once the legislature comes up with a unified bill, Gov. Jim Doyle will have to sign it into law. He generally supports the bill.  Lawmakers in support of the bill said it will result in increased competition and lower rates.

The bill does away with local cable TV franchise agreements in place since the 1970s.  Advocates for local public access, educational and government channels also opposed the bill. They said those channels that are known for broadcasting city council and school board meetings and other community gatherings will have a harder time surviving under the new structure that doesn’t have guaranteed fees to fund them.

The City of Brodhead received about $25,000 from Charter last year for its franchise fee.  City Clerk Nancy J. Schoeller said the money goes into a general fund with a portion of it going to help maintain two public access channels, one for the city and one for the school.  If the city loses the money, Schoeller said, it won’t ask residents to support the channels, which may mean their demise.

Under the bill, local cable deals would remain in effect for three years.  In New Glarus, the village has started making preparations for the loss of income with the bill’s passage. The village’s cable committee met Nov. 26 to discuss options to increase the budget over the next three years in order to support the access channel when the time comes.   —>
http://www.themonroetimes.com/o1203cab.htm
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AT&T Round 3: Franchise reform gets new House leader
by Milt Capps
Nashville Post (TN)
12/04/07

State Rep. Steve McDaniel (R-Parkers Crossroads) told NashvillePost.com this morning he plans to lead the third attempt to enact statewide video franchising in the General Assembly, when it convenes in January.  Also this morning, AT&T Tennessee President Gregg Morton told NashvillePost.com that Sen. Bill Ketron (R-Murfreesboro) will, once again, be the bill’s champion in the Senate.   —>

http://www.nashvillepost.com/news?id=27760
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Higginbotham’s taxpayer-funded commercials
by Mariella Smith
Sticks on Fire (FL)
12/03/07

County Commissioner Al Higginbotham invited several citizen groups and community leaders to be videotaped with him today for what his staff called a “Christmas commercial” to be televised on the county’s TV station, HTV22. Higginbotham’s term ends next year so he needs to get his re-election campaign in gear now.

A televised campaign commercial featuring smiling citizens and community leaders with the candidate would ordinarily be very expensive, and most candidates would have a hard time organizing it even if they could afford it. In contrast, this “Christmas commercial” will be paid for by the taxpayers.

The Fishhawk Republican club sounds delighted to be included…  I wonder if Higginbotham also invited the East Hillsborough Democrats to be involved in his taxpayer-funded Holiday commercial? I wonder what Louise Thompson thinks of this use of our county-funded television station and film crew? (Louise is Executive Director of TBCN, the Tampa Bay Public Access television station which Hillsborough County commissioners decided not to fund anymore, while using our their TV station for their own self-promotion.) How do you, as a taxpayer, feel about your commissioner spending your taxes to film himself wishing you a happy Holiday? In an election year?   —>
http://sticksoffire.com/2007/12/03/higginbotham%E2%80%99s-taxpayer-funded-commercials/
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Proposal would put all Santa Ana meetings on TV
The proposal, meant to ensure transparency, follows two non-televised ‘work sessions’ among council members.
by Doug Irving
Orange County Register (CA)
12/03/07

SANTA ANA – Television cameras would record and broadcast every discussion and debate of the City Council under a proposal up for a vote this evening that was crafted to make city government more transparent.  The city has broadcast most council meetings this year on a public-access channel. But council members have met for non-televised “work sessions” twice in the past two months, both times to discuss major issues facing the city.

The proposal going before the council tonight would require all meetings to be videotaped and broadcast on a public-access channel. It also would force the city to stream meetings live on its Web site, and to create a searchable online archive of meetings.   —>
http://www.ocregister.com/news/council-city-meetings-1933885-broadcast-proposal
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Maui webcast to cover ferry
A community access channel merges TV and Web technology
by Gary T. Kubota
Star Bulletin (HI)
12/04/07

The arrival of the Hawaii Superferry on Maui Thursday and accompanying protest are scheduled to be available for live viewing on the Internet through the public access channel Akaku: Maui Community Television.  The streaming broadcast at Akaku.org has been made possible through emerging television and Internet technologies within the last year, said David Coennen, production director at Akaku.   —>
http://starbulletin.com/2007/12/04/news/story08.html
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compiled by Rob McCausland
Alliance for Community Media
202-393-2650
web: http://ourchannels.org
wiki: http://peg.ourchannels.org

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Explore posts in the same categories: cable vs telco, cross-ownership, FCC, government access, human rights, media diversity, media ownership, municipal programming, redlining, video franchising, youth media

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