Archive for the ‘cross-ownership’ category

Community Media: Selected Clippings – 03/07/08

March 10, 2008

Regular channels on AT&T sought for community access
by George Moore
MyRecordJournal.com (CT)
03/07/08

HARTFORD – Public television officials and others argued before the state legislature Friday that AT&T should be required to offer community access and government television as regular channels in its new U-verse television service.  AT&T’s new “internet protocol” television service plans to offer all of the state’s local community access stations under a drop-down menu accessed from a single channel, 99.

Community access officials said it would take as long as a minute to find a community access program and that the signal quality would not match that of commercial stations.  Officials discussed AT&T’s new service as a part of hearing on a bill before the General Assembly’s Committee on Energy and Technology.

The U-verse presentation of community access programming “looks like YouTube on TV,” said Jennifer Evans, production manager for West Hartford Community Television. The law, she said, should “insist that public access be delivered at equivalent capacity.”
http://www.myrecordjournal.com/site/tab1.cfm?newsid=19372062&BRD=2755&PAG=461&dept_id=592708&rfi=6
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Schedule for Durham’s public access shows
The News & Observer (NC)
03/07/08

[ comments allowed ]

For nearly 20 years, church folk in Durham have been broadcasting their sermons and ministries on cable Channel 8.  You might have caught the story Tuesday on the city and county’s agreement with Time Warner cable. The news, essentially, is that due to changes in cable franchise laws, the city and county will now have to pay $12,000 a month for public access programming to be aired. These are shows that used to be broadcast for free in Durham.

In tomorrow’s issue of The Durham News, you’ll read more about how ministers have used the public airwaves to spread The Word.  Meanwhile, here’s a schedule of the variety of shows coming up this weekend. We couldn’t fit the schedule in the newspaper.   —>
http://blogs.newsobserver.com/bullseye/index.php?title=schedule_for_weekend_church_shows&more=1&c=1&tb=1&pb=1
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VT Edition Interview: Tim Nulty & Bill Shuttleworth on the East Central Vermont Community Fiber Network
by Jane Lindholm
Vermont Public Radio
03/06/08

Town Meeting voters in more than 20 towns, from Montpelier to Windsor, gave overwhelming support to the East Central Vermont Community Fiber Network on Tuesday. The broadband project is a subscriber-based service that would be supported by residents and the non-profit ISP ValleyNet. The network would offer high-speed internet, telephone, and cable services. VPR’s Jane Lindholm speaks with ECFiber Chairman ,Tim Nulty, and Vermont Telecommunications Authority Executive Director, Bill Shuttleworth about the next step for these towns, and what their approval means for other broadband projects across the state.
http://www.vpr.net/news_detail/79638/
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Police, fire officials join for community TV show
Marin Independent Journal (CA)
03/07/08

[ comments allowed ]

The Novato police and fire officials are joining forces with the city’s public access television station to air “On the Scene,” a community awareness show.  The first show is set for production next week, said Liz Greiner, Novato police department community services officer. The topics will be varied, from child car-seat safety, cardiopulmonary resuscitation, disaster preparedness, bicycle safety and smoke and carbon monoxide alarms.   —>
http://www.marinij.com/marin/ci_8498457
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Weston Speak Up is on television
by Kimberly Donnelly
The Weston Forum (CT)
03/07/08

Want to hear what’s on the minds of Westonites? Tune in to Cablevision Channel 79 and find out.  Weston’s Speak Up 2008, the League of Women Voters of Weston-sponsored event that took place in February, will be streaming this weekend on the town’s public access television station.  Tune in anytime, Friday afternoon, March 7, through Sunday evening, March 9. Speak Up 2008 will be playing on a continuous loop.

The 16th annual Speak Up featured town and state officials answering questions from the public in an “anything goes” question-and-answer format.  Topics ranged from school start times, the status of the Revson baseball fields, the future of a town cemetery, and the possibility of a community center in town, among others.  Speak Up 2008 is also available online at www.aboutweston.com.
http://www.acorn-online.com/news/publish/weston/29940.shtml
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Film About Coney Island Wins High School Film Prize
by Ben Badler
Kinetic Carnival – The Coney Island Blog (NY)
03/07/08

[ comments allowed ]

First place in Tuesday night’s BK 4 Reel competition – in which local high school students submitted 2-3 minute videos depicting ‘their Brooklyn’ – went to Park Slope teen Derek Garcia, for his film about taking the F train down to Coney in the wintertime.  Tied for second place were Shalik Wilson for his film about life in Bushwick’s Borinquen Houses, and Axel Lindy for his film about sneaking out at night to hang out on the Brooklyn Promenade.  All three films will be shown on the BK 4 Reel program and Brooklyn Community Access Television.
http://kineticcarnival.blogspot.com/2008/03/film-about-coney-island-wins-high.html
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[The subject is a documentary film, “King Corn”…]
by Lulu McAllister
Lulu’s User-Friendly Guide to San Francisco (CA)
03/07/08

[ comments allowed ]

My good friend Elizabeth Carroll has become a local talking head on San Francisco Public Access television!… Here is a clip of Liz’s debut on a show called SF Live. The subject is a documentary film, “King Corn”, and her guests are from an organic garden organization in the city:   —>
http://blueyedlu.blogspot.com/2008/03/my-good-friend-elizabeth-carroll-has.html
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Letter: Veto the FCC’s Big Media Handout
by Alexandra Russell, Free Press
Missoula Community Radio
03/07/08

Dear Missoula Community Radio,

Congress can overturn the FCC’s bad rules to further consolidate local media.  Veto the FCC’s Big Media Handout   Now’s your best chance to stop media consolidation in Montana.  The Senate introduced legislation earlier this week that would reverse the Federal Communications Commission’s decision to let the nation’s largest media companies swallow up more local and independent news outlets.  Congress has just 60 legislative days to pass this bill. By acting now, you can help make it happen:   —>
http://mcrfm.wordpress.com/2008/03/07/veto-the-fccs-big-media-handout/
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ACTION ALERT: Senators Seek to Overturn New FCC Media Ownership Rules
by Dibya Sarkar
The Community Bridge Blog (KS)
03/07/08

[ comments allowed ]

A bipartisan group of senators today introduced a resolution to stop regulators from easing media-ownership rules in the nation’s 20 largest cities.  They fear the Federal Communication Communications (FCC) rule would leave newspaper readers, radio listeners and TV viewers with fewer choices. Several consumer groups are challenging the rule in federal court.

The “resolution of disapproval” was introduced by Sen. Byron Dorgan, D-N.D., along with 13 Democratic and Republican co-sponsors  to stop the FCC from implementing the new rule that the agency approved in December. The FCC published the cross-ownership rule in the Federal Register on Feb. 21.

“When nearly half of the people in this country are told that in their cities and towns the media will get the green light to consolidate, they will not be happy,” said Dorgan in a release. “The proposal would also create a greatly relaxed approval process for newspapers to buy TV stations in any U.S. media market and spur a new wave of media consolidation in both large and small media markets.”   —>
http://communitybridge.blogspot.com/2008/03/action-alert-senators-seek-to-overturn.html
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The FCC & Censorship: Legendary Media Activist Everett Parker on the Revocation of WLBT’s TV License in the 1960s for Shutting Out Voices of the Civil Rights Movement
Democracy Now!
03/06/08

JUAN GONZALEZ: We take a look now at the only time a television station had its license revoked for failing to serve the public interest. It was in the 1960s in Jackson, Mississippi. TV station WLBT had its license revoked for attempting to squelch the voices of the civil rights movement of the time.

The station first came under scrutiny by the Office of Communication of the United Church of Christ. The Office was founded and headed up by media activist Everett Parker. He identified WLBT as a frequent target of public complaints and FCC reprimands regarding its public service. Parker filed a “petition to deny renewal” with the FCC, initiating a process that eventually got the station’s license revoked by a federal court and had far-reaching consequences in American broadcasting.

AMY GOODMAN: Dr. Everett Parker joins us now in our firehouse studio. He has been a media activist for more than six decades, currently an adjunct professor of communications at Fordham University. He’s ninety-five years old. Welcome to Democracy Now!   —>
http://i4.democracynow.org/2008/3/6/the_fcc_censorship_legendary_media_activist
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Community TV faces blackout
by Sally Jackson
The Australian
03/06/08

Community TV stations would close before the end of the year unless the federal Government moved quickly to guarantee their digital future, the sector warned yesterday.  Perth’s Access 31 and Brisbane’s Channel 31 were most at risk, said Andrew Brine, general manager of Access 31 and president of newly-formed peak body the Australian Community Television Alliance.

The five capital-city stations announced yesterday they had split from the Community Broadcasting Association of Australia and joined forces in ACTA to more effectively lobby the Government.  “There are over 300 community radio stations and only five community TV stations (in the CBAA),” Mr Brine said.  “We were to some degree getting lost in the mix and we felt as a sector we would be better doing it by ourselves.”

While the commercial and public TV networks were already simulcasting in analog and digital ahead of the switch-off of the analog signal in December 2013, community TV was marooned on the analog signal, with no government plan or funding to go digital. Uncertainty over the stations’ future was deterring program-makers and sponsors, and audiences were dwindling as viewers migrated to digital TV sets, Mr Brine said.

“Perth has lost on average 12,000 viewers a month over the last year or so (and) 90 per cent of it would be because of digital take-up,” he said.  “For Brisbane and Perth especially it is stretching the ongoing viability of the services. Unless there is something done in terms of a digital future for us, within a year we will lose one or two services.”   —>
http://www.theaustralian.news.com.au/story/0,25197,23325518-5013871,00.html
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Media Watchdog Calls for More Pressure on China Over Human Rights
by Tendai Maphosa
NewsVOA.com
03/07/08

With just five months to go before the Summer Olympic Games in Beijing, there has been increasing scrutiny of China’s foreign policy as well as its human rights record. The media watchdog group, Reporters Without Borders has issued a statement saying it has not seen any evidence that human rights and freedom of expression have improved in China. Tendai Maphosa has more in this report from London.   —>
http://www.voanews.com/english/2008-03-07-voa58.cfm
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The Pearson Foundation and the Jane Goodall Institute Form Digital Arts Partnership
Relationship To Support Institute’s Roots & Shoots Global Youth Program
CSRwire
03/07/08

The Pearson Foundation today announced commitments to support digital arts and environmental and humanitarian education for youth around the world. Pearson Foundation President Mark Nieker made the announcement at the WNET/Thirteen and WLIW21’s Teaching & Learning Celebration in New York City alongside renowned primatologist Jane Goodall, PhD, DBE.

The Pearson Foundation announced that the Jane Goodall Institute (JGI) has joined the Digital Arts Alliance, a consortium that promotes digital arts in K-12 education through fully funded and staffed programs that deliver technology and curricula directly to schools and community centers nationwide. The Pearson Foundation is the founding partner in the Digital Arts Alliance. Other members include Nokia, Adobe, The National Academy Foundation, and the American Red Cross.

The Pearson Foundation and JGI will kick-off their partnership at Jane Goodall’s Global Youth Summit in Orlando, Fla., on Earth Day, April 22, 2008. Working through the Digital Arts Alliance, the Pearson Foundation will introduce digital film making, media strategies and leadership skills to 100 young people from around the world attending the summit. In addition, the Pearson Foundation will give participating youth the tools they need to create video messages about their commitment to making a difference in the world, and to share these short films with each other and the thousands of youth participating in its other programs.

The Pearson Foundation has also committed to bring its digital media curriculum to Roots & Shoots groups in five locations around the world. Roots & Shoots is JGI’s environmental and humanitarian youth education program. By extending youth engagement beyond the summit itself, the Pearson Foundation is creating a global dialogue among young people regarding the critical issues facing our planet.

“Dr. Jane Goodall embodies the idea of global youth education, and Pearson shares her passion for inspiring young people around the world and for giving them unique learning opportunities,” said Nieker. “By providing digital technology to the Institute’s Roots & Shoots program and Jane Goodall’s Global Youth Summit this April, Pearson Foundation supports the spirit of environmental and humanitarian learning with a world leader in this field.”

“In the Internet age, technology is critical to advocacy, which is why we are so excited about our partnership with the Pearson Foundation,” said Goodall. “Like the Pearson Foundation, we support the use of digital arts for youthful self-expression. Working together, we hope to empower young people around the world to address the issues facing their communities and, ultimately, create the next generation of leaders.”   —>
http://www.csrwire.com/News/11316.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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Community Media: Selected Clippings – 02/27/08

February 27, 2008

Verizon still not carrying BCAT
by Patrick Ball
Bedford Minuteman (MA)
02/27/08

[ comments allowed ]

Bedford Community Access Television programming might be the best it has ever been, but Verizon subscribers wouldn’t know it because they can’t watch the PEG Access programming they pay for.

“I want my BCAT,” is a complaint often heard by Bedford Community Access Television’s Executive Director Madeleine Altmann. “Now that BCAT is getting a lot more popular, and it’s 24 hours, people are bumming,” she said.  Bedfordites are disappointed because Verizon, eight months after becoming Bedford’s second cable provider, is still not carrying the town’s PEG Access channels broadcast from BCAT.

A technically separate but intrinsically related issue is that Verizon has also failed thus far to connect its FiOS to the PEG access points of origination – Town Hall, Bedford High School, the Bedford Free Public Library, the Town Center building and First Church of Christ, Congregational – on the Town Center campus.   —>
http://www.wickedlocal.com/bedford/homepage/x374196492
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More TV Choice and Competition Near for Residents of Abington, Mass.
TMCnet
02/26/08

[ comments allowed ]

Residents of Abington are a major step closer to having another choice for their cable television services, thanks to a newly approved agreement authorizing Verizon to offer its FiOS TV service via the most advanced all-digital, fiber-optic network straight to customers’ homes… The Board of Selectmen in Abington granted a cable franchise Monday (Feb. 25) to Verizon, paving the way for video choice for approximately 5,000 more Massachusetts households…

The Abington franchise agreement contains provisions for the network’s future growth; financial support and capacity for educational and government access channels; cable service to government buildings; and other important benefits to the town, including insurance, indemnification and enforcement protections.   —>
http://www.tmcnet.com/usubmit/2008/02/26/3292479.htm
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They’re Back! Prometheus Asks Court to Vacate Ownership-Rule Change
Group Says Decision Was Arbitrary and Capricious and Beyond the FCC’s Authority
by John Eggerton
Broadcasting & Cable
02/26/08

[ comments allowed ]

As promised, anti-media consolidation activists asked a federal court to throw out the Federal Communications Commission’s recent media-ownership decision.  Media Access Project Tuesday filed a petition with the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit on behalf of Prometheus Radio Project and in opposition to loosening the newspaper-broadcast cross-ownership rules, which the FCC did Dec. 18.

Tribune already took aim at the cross-ownership rules in a separate suit against an FCC decision granting it waivers from the rules — it asked for more regulatory relief than it got. But it is coming at the agency from the other direction: It saw the decision as a chance to try to get the cross-ownership ban lifted entirely by the courts.

MAP was instrumental in getting the FCC’s 2003 ownership-rule rewrite remanded to that court in the first place when it represented Prometheus in a filing to block that deregualtory effort. The result of that, after years of legal maneuvers and rule reviews, was eventually that December 2007 decision to loosen, but not lift, the newspaper-broadcast cross-ownership rules. But there is more for MAP to like in the rule rewrite this time around.

The group supported the FCC majority’s decision not to loosen the local TV or radio ownership caps. “We are going to be very supportive of some of the things the commission did,” MAP president Andrew J. Schwartzman said. But loosening newspaper-broadcast cross-ownership was not one of them and it made that clear in no uncertain terms. In its petition, the group called the decision “contrary to law” and “otherwise arbitrary and capricious, an abuse of discretion and in excess of statutory authority.”  MAP asked the court to “vacate, enjoin and set aside the report and order and order such other relief as may be just and proper.”   —>
http://www.broadcastingcable.com/article/CA6535600.htm
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Voices for the voiceless: Young Latinos are speaking out on air
by Ali Reed
Medill Reports – Northwestern University (IL)
02/27/08

A group of Chicago Hispanic teenagers say they are tired of how underrepresented their community is in mainstream media.  They have turned their frustration into action and are now vocal journalists on a mission to provide a voice for the underrepresented.

These youth, or “producers” as they are called at work, get their voices heard on the radio for an hour every Monday through Thursday evening.  They are volunteer journalists at Radio Arte, 90.5 FM, a nonprofit Latino public radio station based in Pilsen. The 10-year-old station has made a place for teen producers since it was founded.  “Our voices are oftentimes disenfranchised by larger public media and commercial media,” said Silvia Rivera, general manager of Radio Arte.  “So what we’re trying to do in our small slice of the world is to try to be as representative as possible of our community.”

Radio Arte’s small slice of the world covers a 14-mile broadcast radius stretching southwest from Pilsen, an area with more than 500,000 residents.  Each year a group of 30 youth journalists, ages 15 to 21, are chosen from applicants for the station’s 10-week training program. They learn to write, research, interview and hone their on-air delivery skills.   —>
http://news.medill.northwestern.edu/chicago/news.aspx?id=79597
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Missing: Minorities in Media
by Laura S. Washington
In These Times
02/26/08

[ 3 comments ]

In the wake of racial upheaval, the 1968 “Riot Report” concluded the media had to improve its coverage of Black America. Has it?

America was burning. The riots unleashed by the April 4, 1968 assassination of the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. were terrorizing cities across the nation.  Chicago was no exception. Warner Saunders got a desperate call from WLS-TV, the local ABC affiliate. They needed blacks on the air, and they needed them now. So Saunders, who was a community activist and executive director of Chicago’s Better Boys Foundation, signed up as co-host of a hastily arranged television special, “For Blacks Only.”

The special, which aired in 1968, snared such high ratings that the station gave it a regular slot and kept it going for 10 years. Saunders eventually became a full-time reporter. Today he’s the top news anchor at Chicago’s NBC station.

Saunders’ foray into TV news came weeks after President Lyndon B. Johnson’s Kerner Commission report declared, “Our nation is moving toward two societies, one black, one white — separate and unequal.”  The report, also known as “The Riot Report,” released 40 years ago this month, was a response to the urban riots of the late ’60s. Blacks, outraged over poverty and racism, took to the streets and shook up America’s powers that be.

The commission produced an exhaustive look at media coverage of communities of color and responded with a key recommendation: if the United States hoped to cool down the searing anger in its inner cities across the nation, it must do a better job of covering African-Americans.  The report’s authors slammed the media, writing, “the journalistic profession has been shockingly backward in seeking out, hiring, training and promoting Negroes.”

Four decades later, there has been undeniable progress. Our cities are no longer burning. Yet in many ways, we are running on ice.   —>
http://www.alternet.org/rights/77789/
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Is it finally time for a national broadband policy?
by Carol Wilson
Telephony Online
02/20/08

There seems to be a consensus growing that the U.S. should (finally) have a national broadband policy. Now the question is, what will that policy include?

I think now is the best possible time to start answering that question, and here is why: We are in the midst of a presidential election campaign that promises to be hard-fought, and one of the major issues will be the U.S. economy. There is nothing more central to our economic problems than the ability to have true broadband access everywhere, and to make it affordable to consumers and businesses alike.

I’m far from the first person to say this. As manufacturing jobs have increasingly gone overseas, what is replacing them? Supposedly we have become a service economy, but digital communications enables service jobs to be shipped abroad as well, as many in the customer service and software development industries know all too well. The only way to ensure that the U.S. workforce remain employable is to give that workforce the best possible tools in the digital age, and that starts with broadband.   —>
http://telephonyonline.com/broadband/commentary/national-broadband-policy-0220/
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Williamstown faces broadband, water, tax break issue at Town Meeting
by David Delcore
Times Argus (VT)
02/26/08

[ comments allowed ]

—>  Among the forward-looking items on the Town Meeting Day warning is a proposal to enter an inter-local contract with other area communities for the purpose of establishing “a universal, open-access, financially self-sustaining broadband communications system.” That system would provide residents of participating communities with services ranging from high-speed Internet access to telephone and cable television.   —>
http://www.timesargus.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20080226/NEWS02/802260346/1003/NEWS02
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Social Media Challenge: Telling a life story
by Jake McKee
Community Guy
02/26/08

[ 7 comments ]

As I mentioned in an earlier post, my grandmother recently passed away at the age of 83. During the festivities (and I do use that word specifically… we are, and she was Irish Catholic, after all), I volunteered to take Grandma Pat’s photo albums and some other keepsake books home to archive digitally. The theory went, if I took them, I could scan them so they could be easily reproduced for all six kids to do what they wanted with the content.

Pat was nothing if not an organizer, and so I find myself with a wealth of wonderful, decades old content, including recipes, household tips collection, photos, and baby books. I’ve been thinking a lot about the opportunities that this content presents when combined with the tools that exist both on my Mac and on the Web.  Honestly, I’m a bit overwhelmed.

The most obvious solution goes something like this:

* Scan the photos
* Upload the photos to Flickr, allowing family members to comment on each photo
* Use iPhoto to create a slideshow, then export the slideshow to a DVD or Web video
* Share the Web video on YouTube or Blip.tv
* Send an email to friends and family alerting them that the photos and videos are live.

The thing is, I want to do more than simply digitize the content, and hope that someone leaves a comment on the public version. I want to do something with the content…. and more importantly, I want my family and her friends to do something too. I want stories to be told. I want to create opportunities for her kids and grandkids to share their own memories, photos, videos. I want to involve the extended family (which again, Irish Catholic – no small feat).

So I turn to you, my internet social media friends. What processes & methods (technical or otherwise), software, Web apps, or anything else would you suggest? How can I use the tools at hand to help me tell stories as vibrant as she was and always will be?   —>
http://www.communityguy.com/1384/telling-a-life-story/
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Code4Lib 2008: The Internet Archive
by Nicole Engard
Blogging Section of SLA-IT
02/27/08

[ comments allowed ]

What a great way to open a conference like Code4Lib.  The first keynote was presented by Brewster Kahle of the Internet Archive.  Brewster started by reminding us that the reason he was there talking to us and the reason he is working on the Internet Archive is because the library metaphor easily translates to the Internet – as librarians we’re paid to give stuff away!  We work in a $12 billion a year industry which supports the publishing infrastructure.  With the Internet Archive, Brewster is not suggesting that we spend less money – but that we spend it better.

He started with a slide of the Boston Public Library which has “Free to All” carved in stone.  Brewster says that what people carve in stone is take seriously – and so this is a great example of what libraries stand for.  Our opportunity now is to go digital.  Provide free digital content in addition to the traditional content we have been providing.  I loved that he then said that this is not just a time for us to be friendly together as librarians – but to work together as a community and build something that can be offered freely to all!

He went on to say that what happens to libraries is that they burn – they tend to get burned by governments who don’t want them around.  The Library of Alexandria is probably best known for not being here anymore.  This is why lots of copies keeps stuff safe. Along those lines, the Internet Archive makes sure to store their data in mirror locations – and by providing information to the archive we’re ensuring that our data is also kept safe and available.  This idea of large scale swap agreements (us sharing with the Internet Archive, us sharing with other libraries, etc) in different geographical regions finds us some level of preservation.

How it started — The internet archive started by collecting the world wide web – every 2 months taking a snap shot of the web.  Brewster showed Yahoo! 10 years ago – ironically a bit of data that even Yahoo! didn’t have – so for their 10 year anniversary they had to ask the Internet Archive for a copy of what their site looked like!  He showed us the first version of Code4Lib’s site and exclaimed “Gosh is that geeky!” because it was a simple black text on white background page.

While it may have seemed a bit ambitious to archive the web, the Wayback Machine gets about 500 hits a second.  And it turns out that the out of print materials on the web are often just as valuable as the in print information on the web.  People are looking for the way things were for historical or cultural research reasons and this tool makes it possible.   —>
http://sla-divisions.typepad.com/itbloggingsection/2008/02/code4lib-2008-t.html
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TV coverage is factor in Southington BOE venue decision
by Jason R. Vallee
MyRecordJournal.com (CT)
02/27/08

[ comments allowed ]

SOUTHINGTON – When the Board of Education meets tonight, it will be asked to determine whether to continue meeting at the John V. Pyne Meeting Center or consider moving to Town Hall. The decision is based on what would most effectively allow the board to improve the quality of its cable broadcasts, and the panel appears to be leaning toward technological changes rather than a physical move.  Three weeks ago, Southington High School Television Coordinator Rit Campbell said the district made a broadcast conversion from VHS to DVD format. The conversion, in which Cox Cable replaced all public access equipment with digital simulcast technology, immediately helped improve the video quality by 80 percent, though sound has remained a problem.   —>
http://www.myrecordjournal.com/site/tab1.cfm?newsid=19339338&BRD=2755&PAG=461&dept_id=592708&rfi=6
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Midterm
by Erin Semagin Damio
Erin Semagin Damio
02/27/08

[ comments allowed ]

—>  Isa Chandra Moskowitz, a vegan living in Brooklyn, New York, offered her own solution. In 2006 she started a public access cooking show called the Post Punk Kitchen. In an interview with Gothamist magazine, she described the show, which she cohosted with Terry Hope Romero, as a response to the lack of vegan cooking shows on Food Network. Today, episodes of the show are available on Google Video. Moskowitz’s easy-to-make vegan cupcakes and other delicious dishes have earned her the distinction of “America’s Most Popular Vegan Chef” in her Barnes and Noble biography. She and Romero have written three bestselling cookbooks, including Vegan With A Vengeance, Vegan Cupcakes Take Over the World, and Veganomican. She also maintains a website, which includes forums and her own blog.   —>
http://ensd113.blogspot.com/2008/02/when-lauren-ulm-of-boston-started.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

Community Media: Selected Clippings – 02/25/08

February 26, 2008

FCC Online Digital Television (DTV) Conversion Workshop for People with Disabilities – Feb. 28
by Darrell Shandrow
Blind Access Journal
02/25/08

[ comments allowed ]

Marlaina from ACB Radio reminds us all about an upcoming FCC workshop (Feb. 28) covering the impact of the impending digital television (DTV) conversion on people with disabilities.  This subject arose on my show this evening, and i promised to post this far and wide. Here is a copy of the e-mail I received from Jill Pender of the FCC regarding their upcoming workshop on conversion from analog to digital tv.  Let’s keep asking why our video description has not been restored. Or, when might we expect it to be restored.   —>
http://blog.blindaccessjournal.com/2008/02/fcc-online-digital-television-dtv.html
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Iraq Vets Against the War organize the second Winter Soldier: March 13-16
by Leslie Dreyer
Art Threat
02/25/08

[ comments allowed ]

Mark your calendars and organize a screening in your community. Let this Winter Soldier gathering March 13-16 in Washington D.C. be the most observed and talked about event this year.  The four-day event will bring together veterans from across the country to testify about their experiences in Iraq and Afghanistan – and present video and photographic evidence. In addition, there will be panels of scholars, veterans, journalists, and other specialists to give context to the testimony. These panels will cover everything from the history of the GI resistance movement to the fight for veterans’ health benefits and support…

For those interested in watching or organizing around the proceedings at Winter Soldier, there will be a number of ways to watch and listen to the event.
* Live television broadcast via satellite TV, accessible through Dish Network as well as public access stations that choose to carry our broadcast – Friday and Saturday only
* Live video stream on the web – Thursday through Sunday
* Live radio broadcast via KPFA in Berkley California and other Pacifica member stations – Friday through Sunday
* Live audio stream via KPFA’s website – Friday through Sunday   —>
http://www.artthreat.net/2008/02/iraq-vets-against-war-organize
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GH leaders unhappy with cable project
Muskegon Chronicle (MI)
02/25/08

GRAND HAVEN — Telecommmunications giant AT&T is making good on promises to deliver competition in the cable television market to West Michigan this year by proposing franchise agreements with area governmental units.  But not everyone is happy about it.

The company has sent letters to local governments in West Michigan requesting franchise agreements for delivering television service over its fiber optic and telephone lines.  Under a 2006 state law backed by phone companies AT&T and Verizon, the agreements are a take-it or leave-it proposition. Local governments have 30 days to accept the terms laid out by AT&T or risk having an agreement imposed on them without receiving any franchise fees.

In Muskegon and Oceana counties, AT&T is not the historic telephone company. In these Verizon Communications communities, similar requests to provide television services are not being made at this time, a Verizon official said.

In Holland, Mayor Al McGeehan said he was “very angry.”  Grand Haven City Manager Patrick McGinnis said the 2006 state law limits local control over public rights of way.  “We were adamantly opposed to it. And when I say ‘we,’ I mean the people of the state of Michigan. It was a real bad deal,” he said.   —>
http://www.mlive.com/news/chronicle/index.ssf?/base/news-6/1203952516283700.xml&coll=8
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Congressmen seek media coverage of Asian vote
India Post
02/24/08

Several Members of Congress have sent letters to CNN and MSNBC to highlight the lack of coverage of the Asian American and Pacific Islander vote during the 2008 presidential campaigns. In the letter, Members of Congress said, “We are deeply concerned that the lack of coverage of Asian voters in the 2008 presidential race by media unfairly suppresses a growing and significant political constituency. We request a meeting to discuss these matters.   —>
http://indiapost.com/article/usnews/2145/
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Task force approves proposal from public access programming
Group plans to take ideas to city council
by Phil Wright
The East Oregonian
02/25/08

[ comments allowed ]

A city task force examining how a public access channel would function for Pendleton has approved a proposal to launch government and education programming.  The city council created the task force in November 2007. The task force members include Councilman John Brenne, chamber of commerce Executive Director Leslie Carnes, Pendleton Arts Councilman Jack Sanders and Pendleton residents Peter Walters, Ben Talley and Robert Tally, who manages Internet technology systems for Blue Mountain Community College…

Channel 5 is the Pendleton area’s public access channel. Charter primarily uses to deliver product advertisements.  Task force members recently visited Richland CityView Cable 13, the public cable access channel of the city of Richland. CityView provides free programming and coverage of public meetings. From what the task force learned, it created a proposal to deliver initial programming.

The proposal calls for education and local government programming six hours a day, from 3-9 p.m. That would include 4 1/2 hours of the Classic Arts Showcase, a free cable television program featuring classic arts, including musical and ballet performances. A scrolling calendar noting public meetings and events would fill the other 90 minutes, with the scroll running in 30-minute segments.

The chamber would generate and control the calendar scroll and BMCC would download and transmit programs to Charter. The rest of the day would be public access and whatever advertisements Charter would run. The proposal also calls for the Pendleton Arts Center Board to appoint and oversee a local access channel advisory committee, which could include representatives from the Pendleton Public Library, BMCC, the Pendleton Center for the Arts and possibly city government.

The task force plans to bring its proposal to the city council’s March 4 meeting.  But, before that, members said they still have some bridges to build, including who would handle the work at BMCC, which Tally estimated could come to about 4 hours per week at the start.  He suggested two BMCC audio-visual technicians could handle it, but he would have to mull that over with the college’s human resources department. That’s because wages could run as much as $80 per week, or about $4,000 per year. Benefits could add another $2,000.  Sanders said he would approach the city, the Pendleton Chamber of Commerce and the Umatilla-Morrow Education Service District to contribute funds.

City Councilwoman Marjorie Iburg said this beginning level seems “pretty doable,” but to really move forward, the right person needs to head up this process. And finding that person could take some time, she said.  While locals would handle the government and education side, City Attorney Pete Wells said Charter would run the public access side.  Well said at City View, the public access side is independent of the government and education side, which is also how the task force wants to start.   —>
http://www.eastoregonian.info/main.asp?SectionID=13&SubSectionID=48&ArticleID=73872&TM=64865.39
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Our 20th Anniversary Membership Drive
WCTV Journal (IN)
02/25/08

[ comments allowed ]

2008 marks the twentieth anniversary of Whitewater Community Television serving Richmond and Wayne County. It has been a tremendous journey, starting with just a couple of VHS decks and some borrowed cameras, growing to the full broadcasting facility with editing suites and a three-camera studio that we enjoy today.

From just a few programs on one channel, we have grown to more than sixteen hours a day of original, first-run programming across three channels, airing more than 75 programs a week and supporting more than 40 local producers. Richmond currently enjoys the third largest public access television operation in the state of Indiana.

Along the way we became a critical source for local information in Wayne County, offering gavel-to-gavel coverage of city and county government meetings, educational programs and sporting events from area high schools and colleges, election results and weather alerts and more, as well as acted as an outlet for local producers to provide their own original content to the public.   —>
http://wctvjournal.blogspot.com/2008/02/our-20th-anniversary-membership-drive.html
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PAC 14 preserves Shore history
by Brice Stump
The Daily Times (MD)
02/24/08

[ 1 comment ]

SALISBURY — History will go high-tech soon, as Public Access Channel 14 launches a campaign to digitally capture the Shore’s present and past.  In an unprecedented venture, PAC 14 has garnered the support of more than a dozen history-oriented organizations to preserve Delmarva’s past on video using the best of today’s electronic technology.

Called Digitizing Delmarva’s Heritage and Traditions, the project is being developed by Mike Goodson, manager of PAC 14, in conjunction with Salisbury University and the Lower Eastern Shore Heritage Council and other historical organizations.  Alarmed that much of Delmarva’s oral history by older residents in particular is being lost, Goodson appealed to various group to support the undertaking. “Time is working against us. Our people, places and traditions are fading away before our eyes. In some cases our history is being washed away with the tides,” he said. “Time is not on our side.”

From the lives of watermen, artists and ball players to farmers recalling days of homemade sausage, scrapple and hams, Goodson and others want to save the charm and history of the old Eastern Shore.  Under Goodson’s direction, PAC 14 has created a temporary part-time position that will deal exclusively with the production of “historical videos.”  Tom Taylor, author and videographer, will handle production assignments now through July. By July, Goodson hopes that DDHT, as administered through Salisbury University, will have a SU history graduate on staff to continue the project.   —>
http://www.delmarvanow.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20080224/LIFESTYLE/802240335
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TV show focuses on mental health issues
Fremont minister Barbara Meyers hosts local cable program
by Andrew Cavette
The Argus (CA)
02/25/08

The Rev. Barbara Meyers sat in a makeup chair Wednesday night in the corner of a small, public-access cable-TV studio, ready for her show to start.  Meyers, a minister for the Mission Peak Unitarian Universalist Congregation, is the host of “Mental Health Matters,” a program shown in the Tri-City area and other parts of the East Bay.

Cecelia Burk, who volunteers her cosmetological talents for the show, touched up Meyers’ cheeks before letting her rejoin the small group of enthusiastic Bay Area residents buzzing around the studio’s equipment. They adjusted the cameras, fixed the lighting, checked the sound, and then the show began.

After working for IBM for 25 years, Meyers went back to school and, in 2004, earned a master’s degree in divinity from Starr King School for the Ministry in Berkeley. Her ministry focuses on mental health issues.  One day Paul Clifford, a member of Meyers’ congregation, approached her about a project.  At the time, Clifford was producing another public-access cable-TV show and thought Meyers should produce a program about mental health. Clifford loaned Meyers his crew and his studio time to do a pilot episode.

In that episode, Meyers talked about the stigma attached to mental illness. It was recorded last March.  “I got a fair number of people who told me they had seen it,” Meyers said after the show premiered. “I could see that it was something positive.”  She recruited a crew from her congregation, some of whom have someone in their family with a mental illness or have mental health issues themselves. Other crew members simply want to learn more about television work.

Gwen Todd, a member of Meyers’ congregation,produces her own public-access cable-TV show for Toastmasters International and had contacts with Comcast in Fremont. When she heard Meyers’ idea for the show, she offered her services.  “It’s a very good show and is very much needed,” Todd said. “The crew is getting a lot better as we all develop our skills.”   —>
http://www.insidebayarea.com/argus/localnews/ci_8357715
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Community access TV programming
Post-Bulletin (MN)
02/26/08

[ comments allowed ]

Belau Report:  A proposal to expand Mayo Civic Center, how it would be paid for and community benefits will be discussed by Brad Jones, executive director of the Rochester Convention and Visitor’s Bureau; Donna Drews, executive director of the civic center; and Dennis Hanson, president of the Rochester City Council, on the Belau Report at 7 p.m. Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday on Charter Cable channel 10.
http://news.postbulletin.com/newsmanager/templates/localnews_story.asp?a=330094&z=2
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BOF & BOS Meetings on Metrocast Channel 22
by Wtfd Nuc Sailor
Waterford Political Blog (CT)
02/25/08

[ comments allowed ]

According to today’s, February 25, 2008, New London DAY Public Access TV Schedule the February 12, 2008 Board of Finance Meeting will be on Metrocast Channel 22 Thursday, FEB 28, 2008 at 7:00 PM.  This meeting was relatively short for BOF meetings.  The February 19, 2008 Board of Selectmen meeting will be on Channel 22 on Friday, FEB 29, 2008 also at 7:00 PM.  This is the meeting where the BOS approved $95,000 for architect design services for the Municipal Complex Phase II.   —>
http://waterford.ctlocalpolitics.net/?p=189
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Viewers could be seeing more of Fort Erie council
by Ray Spiteri
Niagara Falls Review (Canada)
02/24/08

There is a growing number of citizens with an active interest in local government.  Town council is taking notice.  Elected officials recently approved a report asking staff to take steps to broadcast council-in-committee meetings on TV Cogeco and to investigate the feasibility of broadcasting real-time council and council-in-committee meetings online for future budget deliberations.

Regular council meetings, held every second and fourth Monday of the month, are televised by the local network, however, council-in-committee sessions, held on the first and third Mondays of the month, are not.  Coun. Bob Steckley, who has been pushing for such an intiative since he was elected at the tail end of 2006, said broadcasting all of council’s meetings will provide citizens more of an opportunity to see their elected representatives at work and make politicians accountable to the public.  “It’s nice to see that we are investigating the possibility of this because it will enhance the openness of government and public access to how we conduct our business,” he said.   —>
http://www.niagarafallsreview.ca/ArticleDisplay.aspx?e=915311
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Brooklyn Paper, Daily News, Brooklyn Eagle, Courier Life at Reporter Roundtable
mcbrooklyn (NY)
02/25/08

[ comments allowed ]

BCAT (Brooklyn Community Access Television) brings us what promises to be a rousing Reporter Roundtable today at 1 p.m. (also Tuesday at 1:30 p.m. and 9:30 p.m. and more showings Thursday and Friday).  In this episode, editor Gersh Kuntman of the Brooklyn Papers is joined by Jotham Sederstrom of the NY Daily News, Sarah Ryley of the Brooklyn Daily Eagle and Tom Tracy of Courier Life. The panel discusses Brooklyn Borough President Marty Markowitz’s recent State of the Borough address, Atlantic Yards, Super Tuesday in Brooklyn, the Gowanus canal development and residential parking permits.
http://mcbrooklyn.blogspot.com/2008/02/brooklyn-paper-daily-news-brooklyn.html
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York public TV an outlet for free speech
Pennsylvania Nonbelievers
02/25/08

[ comments allowed ]

If you are in the York area, try out the local public access station, Comcast channel 16 for a selection of Atheist, Humanist and free thinking opinions.  Here is the link to the station. White Rose Community Television Check out the schedule and tune in!
http://panonbelievers.blogspot.com/2008/02/york-public-tv-outlet-for-free-speech.html
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The FCC, Mickey Mouse & Media Cross-ownership
by Norman Horowitz
Huffington Post
02/25/08

[ 2 comments ]

The FCC has now done the “dirty deed” of eviscerating the long standing Cross Ownership rules. I looked back on something I wrote on the subject over five and a half years ago and decided to “re-issue” it.  The “they” who control the system in this regard who are to serve in the public interest, serve only in the interests of the mega media companies, and lest we forget, the interests of the incumbent administration.  How sad for our country.

The FCC, Mickey Mouse & Media Cross-ownership – July 23, 2002
A former senior FCC staff member told me years ago that virtually all FCC rulings are based on the politics of the issue rather than the merits of the issue. I believe that this is a fair assessment, and I have seen nothing that the FCC does as being in the public interest.   —>
http://www.huffingtonpost.com/norman-horowitz/the-fcc-mickey-mouse-m_b_88285.html
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[ Here’s is a very detailed look at Verizon’s FiOS services, with performance comparisons with cable modem service from a number of US Cities. – rm ]

Verizon FiOS Installed: Macintosh Compatible, Free and Fast
by Adsense Turkiye
Photoshop & Adsense – Art of devil free blog
02/25/08

[ comments allowed ]

FiOS on MacsWell Verizon FiOS Internet became available in my town in New Jersey and I had it installed last week. I ordered the 15MB/2MB (15MB downstream, 2MB upstream) package in our home. Since the Internet is probably more important to us than TV, air, and maybe even food sometimes this was a big decision. Well not that big really, since our cable modem service provided by Cablevision’s Optimum Online has not exactly been great. No matter what the cable company claims about speed our experience was never all that good. More about this later as I will compare Cablevision’s Optimum Online and Verizon FiOS Internet.   —>
http://artofdevil.blogspot.com/2008/02/verizon-fios-installed-macintosh.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

Community Media: Selected Clippings – 02/08/08

February 9, 2008

ED Annie Folger Preserving Public Access in Washington DC
Midpenisula Community Media Center (CA)
02/08/08

The Media Center’s Executive Director, Annie Folger, recently flew out to Washington DC to speak in front of Congress, representing the Alliance for Community Media. She was fighting for Comcast and AT&T to continue to providing PEG (Public, Educational and Government) services as they currently are (or better) and to abide by local, state, and federal laws.  Click the video below to watch the CSPAN broadcast. Annie’s main speech starts at 48mins, and then is questioned throughout the rest.

Here are some of the issues being addressed:   —>
http://midpen-media-center.blogspot.com/2008/02/ed-annie-folger-preserving-public.html
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Forsyth Co. TV debuts
by Nancy Badertscher
Atlanta Journal-Constitution (GA)
02/08/08

Forsyth County government is now as close as the television set.  TV Forsyth debutted last month on Comcast channel 23, allowing local residents to watch government from the comfort of their sofas.  The station is broadcasting meetings of the County Commission, Planning Commission, Zoning Board of Appeals, and Board of Education.  The channel is offering original local programming, as well as an electronic bulletin board with information on government meetings, events and programs.   —>
http://www.ajc.com/metro/content/metro/northfulton/stories/2008/02/08/forsythtv_0210.html
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Fayetteville’s budget ‘A solid looking picture…’
by Trey Alverson
Fayette Daily News (GA)
02/08/08

—>  One revenue related issue that does worry Steele is the effort afoot in the Georgia General Assembly to do away with franchising fees for power, phone and cable companies.  The issue arose Thursday when the council unanimously approved a franchising fee of 5-percent for AT&T.  Steele took this opportunity to explain franchising fees to the public and to stump politically against their removal

“Franchising fees began in 1948 when cities and Georgia Power got together over how to deliver electricity to mostly rural areas,” Steele explained.  According to the mayor, the program they agreed upon allowed companies access to the municipalities’ right of way in exchange for a small fee per customer.

Steele says that the companies pass these fees on to the consumer and now state legislatures are trying to get rid of them.  “Franchise fees account for 11.9-percent of the city’s budget,” Steele said. “I know I’m being political now, but you should call your local legislator and tell him to mind his own business.”   —>
http://www.fayettedailynews.com/article.php?id_news=647
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Resident To Moderate TV Program
Garden City News (NY)
02/08/08

Garden City resident Patty Knap will serve as one of the moderators of “The Healthy Respect Program.”  The American Family Association’s weekly public access cable television show will be aired on Cablevision’s Channel 20 on Tuesday, February 12 from 8 to 9 p.m. It will also be re-aired on Tuesday, March 11th.  The program, intended for teenagers, will focus on a discussion of current moral issues affecting families. It is one of New York’s largest public access TV programs.
http://www.gcnews.com/news/2008/0208/Community/052.html
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Final Rerun of Video of Aspen Ridge/Hill Place developers’ meeting with Town Branch neighbors on Jan. 12, 2008
by Aubrey Shepherd
Aubrey’s View (AR)
02/08/08

LAST CHANCE TO SEE REPLAY of Town Branch Neighborhood and Ward 1 meeting with developers planning to replace Aspen Ridge developers to create student housing in the Town Branch overflow area and former wetland west of South Hill Avenue between Sixth and Eleventh streets in south Fayetteville, Arkansas.

8:45 pm Friday Feb. 7, 2008 — Ward 1/Town Branch-Neighborhood Meeting on Cox Cable channel 18, Fayetteville Public Access Television, the CAT!

9:30 am Saturday Feb. 8, 2008— Talking about how the neighborhood used to be — Robert Williams on Town Branch Neighborhood — on Cox Cable channel 18, Fayetteville Public Access Television, the CAT!  Robert Williams, whose property on South Hill Avenue is bordered on the west by the Aspen Ridge dredged and filled wetland, spoke while looking northwest from the intersection of South Duncan Avenue and Eleventh Street where a wetland area dredged out for a future street on rainy days is called Aspen Bayou by people who drive by.
http://www.aubunique.com/blog/?p=114
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Noteworthy Television This Weekend: Marvin Franklin’s Art
by Toby von Meistersinger
The Gothamist (NY)
02/08/08

The February edition of the MTA’s monthly television show, Transit Transit (Saturdays, 3:30 p.m., WNYE 25) , has a segment about Marvin Franklin, the NYC Transit Authority track inspector who was killed last year in an on the job accident in Brooklyn. The piece talks with some artists who knew Franklin and his co-workers and covers the opening of an exhibition of his work at the New York City Transit Museum in December.

In case you didn’t know, Transit Transit is produced entirely by MTA employees who volunteer for the job and it shows. So if you are a fan of the MTA or merely curious about some behind the scenes transit goings on we recommend it. Plus, it can be unintentionally funny. The show repeats every Saturday during the month on WNYE and will also be on several cable public access channels.   —>
http://gothamist.com/2008/02/08/noteworthy_tele_53.php
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Editorial: Obama and the media
Seattle Times
02/08/08

—>  The Seattle Times endorsed Obama for the Democratic presidential nomination for many reasons, not the least of which is that he makes the most plausible — indeed, utterly believable — argument he can foment change in this weary nation.  But his populist bent on media issues is especially encouraging. He doesn’t merely speak about it; he fights for it. He co-sponsored the recently introduced Media Ownership Act, which passed the Senate commerce committee in December.

The bill would force the Federal Communications Commission to, as Obama said, “place its public charge ahead of its concern for corporate profits.” Indeed, the bill was a response to the FCC’s brazen deference to hungry corporations gobbling up community voices at the expense of communities best served by a diversity of owners and opinions.

Obama is especially concerned about the mounting obstacles to women and minorities entering the ranks of media ownership and management. The bill would force the FCC to weight the scale to the public good.
http://seattletimes.nwsource.com/html/editorialsopinion/2004170421_obamaed08.html
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Comcast Lobbyist Wired for Web Access
Associated Press
SFGate.com
02/07/08

Comcast Corp., the nation’s largest cable operator, paid Capitol Solutions LLC $300,000 in 2007 to channel its issues to Congress.  According to form posted online Monday by the Senate’s public records office, it paid the lobbying firm $160,000 in the second half of 2007.  The firm lobbied on issues related to Internet traffic prioritization, customer access to the NFL Network channel and set-top boxes for converting TV signals from digital to analog. Comcast also paid the firm $140,000 on the same issues in the first half of the year.   —>
http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/n/a/2008/02/07/financial/f153410S24.DTL&hw=tv&sn=029&sc=345
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Hopefuls await nod to run access TV
by Stacy Brown
Times-Tribune (PA)
02/08/08

It could be decision day for hopeful operators of Scranton’s public access cable channels.  A three-member panel appointed to review three proposals to operate public access channels 61 and 62 is scheduled to meet with Mayor Chris Doherty this morning. One of the three should get the nod at the conclusion of the meeting.  “I think we may have an announcement (today),” Mr. Doherty said.

“I don’t know who the panel will recommend, I thought we’d let someone with the background of this panel make the choice.”  The panel consists of Thom Welby, a marketing executive for WNEP-TV; former WYOU-TV videographer Mark Monahan and Shiloh Baptist Church Pastor Reginald McClain.

The competitive process produced three candidates who submitted proposals to City Controller Roseann Novembrino last month.  They include civic group Scranton Today, which has operated the channel for 10 years and is facing competition from Electric City Television and the NEPA Public Access Project.  Electric City Television is an entity developed by Scranton Today veteran Chris Balton. NEPA Public Access Project is a nonprofit group connected with Ozzie Quinn’s Scranton and Lackawanna County Citizens and Taxpayers’ Association.   —>
http://www.thetimes-tribune.com/site/news.cfm?newsid=19275691&BRD=2185&PAG=461&dept_id=416046&rfi=6
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Democracy Now! Needs Money Now For New $6 M. Loft
by Max Abelson
New York Observer
02/08/08

The exclamatory independent news program Democracy Now! won’t be broadcasting out of a Chinatown firehouse for much longer.  According to city records, the left-leaning TV/radio group (Newt Gingrich once told co-host/founder Amy Goodman that he warned his mother not to speak to reporters because of people like her) have paid $6 million for a raw loft at 217 West 25th Street.

But the Sixth Avenue space was massively expensive for DN!, which has the lovably homespun feel of an angry teenager’s basement public access show—though it’s broadcast on 650 TV and radio stations. So they put no money down, records show, taking out a $6 million mortgage paid for by the literary Lannan Foundation, run by J. Patrick Lannan Jr.  “Because we were so desperate,” development director Karen Ranucci told me, “they were so generous.”

Still, they’ll have to repay the loan. “We are so in debt–and that’s why we’re having a concert!” Their Feb. 20 gala will feature Willie Nelson, Danny Glover, Jackson Browne, plus playwrights Wally Shawn (he lives nearby!) and Sarah Jones. “What better way to earn some money,” Ms. Ranucci said, “than to have Willie Nelson drive across the country?” So true.  Tickets range from $200 to $20,000–for a premier table for 10, which includes “dinner with Willie Nelson and all these characters.”

But DN! doen’t necessarily want to leave its firehouse space on Lafayette Street, which it’s been renting from the Downtown Community Television Center. “They needed their space, so we’re leaving,” Ms. Ranucci said about DCTC, “the sooner for them that we could find a place, the better.”

Besides the $6 million purchase price, building offices and an actual TV studio in the loft runs at least $2 million. “We’re trying to get as much used equipment as possible,” Ms. Ranucci said. Plus, the loft will have a classroom for training future journalists. “We work with interns now,” she said, “but we’re all sitting on each other’s laps. We’re crushed in our current digs.”
http://www.observer.com/2008/democracy-now-needs-money-right-now-new-6-m-loft
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Recut, Reframe, Recycle: An Interview with Pat Aufderheide and Peter Jaszi (Part Two)
by Henry Jenkins
Confessions of an Aca-Fan
02/08/08

Your team has had good luck developing a set of guidelines to provide more clarity to documentary producers about when their deployment of borrowed materials is protected under current legal understandings. Can you describe some of the impact that this report has had? What lessons might we take from those experiences as we look at the challenges confronting amateur media makers?

PA: Documentary filmmakers found their hands tied creatively, without access to fair use. So in November 2005 they developed a consensus statement, Documentary Filmmakers’ Statement of Best Practices in Fair Use, through their national organizations and with our coordination, which describes four typical situations that come up for them, and what the principles of fair use are, along with the limitations on those principles. For instance, the Statement shows that in critiquing a particular piece of media, you can use that media to illustrate your point. The limitation is that you can’t use more of it than makes your point. Common sense and good manners require that you let people know what it is (provide credit)…

… You’ve drawn a distinction between acceptable use and fair use. Explain. Why might a push towards an acceptable use policy prove useful in responding to the current challenges facing amateur media makers?

PJ: In a so-called “acceptable use” policy, a copyright owner (or a group of them) might announce that it simply won’t challenge certain kinds of quotations from its material without giving an opinion, one way or another whether those are the kind of uses (i.e. fair ones) that people actually have a right to make. There’s been some talk recently on the part of content owners about this approach, and we certainly don’t oppose it. Anything that brings any additional clarity to is welcome.

But owners’ announcements about “acceptable use” would be no substitute for “Best Practices” developed by and for particular creative communities. For one thing, “acceptable use” rules are always subject to unilateral change, as markets develop or business models morph. For another, “acceptable use” policies are likely to be more restrictive than fair use. To give one example, most discussions of “acceptable use” focus on private and strictly not-for-profit uses, including education. But fair use also operates robustly in the commercial environment (think of book publishing, for example) and that is exactly the environment into which on-line video production is moving as running platforms becomes a profitable business. So while some of us could benefit from “acceptable use,” we all need fair use.

YouTube contributors are not the only group which confronts uncertainties about Fair Use. You’ve also been looking at the impact of these confusions and anxieties on Media Literacy educators. What have you heard? What kinds of classroom practices are being restricted as a result of fears or confusions about Fair Use?   —>
http://henryjenkins.org/2008/02/recut_reframe_recycle_an_inter.html
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CFRC connects community
Local stations’ intimacy meaningful amongst growing media conglomeration
by Courtney Kirkby
The Queen’s Journal (Ontario)
02/08/08

Not so deep in the basement of Carruthers Hall, just south of the dormant Clark Hall Pub and the Campus Bookstore, lies one of Queen’s campus’ best kept secrets: Queen’s radio. Fifteen years short of a century old, adorned with an eclectic selection of art—everything from recent poster art by local artists to an array of framed dog portraits—CFRC 101.9FM is full of more life than any other place I’ve encountered in my four years in Kingston.

CFRC pumps out meaningful broadcasting 24 hours a day, seven days a week, barring a minute or three of dead air every once in a while—unavoidable given the constant stream of new programmers, many of whose first words sent out to radioland are mediated by the black and silver microphones in CFRC’s main control rooms.

In 1922 Douglas Jemmett and Robert Davis first planted the CFRC seed in Fleming Hall that has since grown deep roots in Kingston. They built an experimental AM radio station to increase the Wireless Club’s ability to participate in public broadcasting. This makes CFRC one of the oldest radio stations in the world, topped only by the Marconi Companies and a few others…

… The Queen’s bubble was first broken in this station in 1977, when it was recognized that broadcasting year-round, seven days a week couldn’t be sustained through a strictly student effort. The community was invited in to start broadcasting. Some broadcasters from that era remain on-air today.   —>
http://www.queensjournal.ca/story/2008-02-08/opinions/cfrc-connects-community/
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Online Media: Community TV Comes Full Circle – Part I
by suzemuse (3 comments)
Suzemuse
02/08/08

Chris Brogan wrote an interesting post the other day that has really got me thinking. His thought about how to make it in this burgeoning world of online media:  ” …it’s people who are figuring out the triangle, delivering something of quality, and are connecting targeted content to interested audiences.”

Hmmm. Sounds to me like Community Television to me. Over the next few blog posts I shall endeavour to explain.  Community Television. Public Access TV. Cable Access Programming. I’ve been involved in community television since I was about 10 years old. More than 27 years.

It started in the small town in which I grew up called Masset, on the Queen Charlotte Islands (Haida Gwaii). My Dad, along with some other townspeople, helped start a small (VERY small) community television station using some old leftover TV equipment. They hooked up a couple of cameras, an A/B switch, stuck a microphone on a table and went on the air. Kids from the community (me and my brother included) read community announcements. This community-based TV station was called Masset-Haida Television (MHTV) and it still exists today, last I heard, on Channel 13. Go to http://www.mhtv.ca. . See the blue station logo? That is the very logo my Dad designed back in 1979!   —>
http://suzemuse.wordpress.com/2008/02/08/online-media-community-tv-comes-full-circle-part-i/
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Govt ‘ambushes’ media
by Brigitte Weidlich
Namibian.com
02/08/08

GOVERNMENT plans to establish a Media Council in Namibia to ‘police’ media ethics and to provide a platform for the public to complain about media reports.  This was announced by Government spokesperson, Information and Broadcasting Minister Netumbo Nandi-Ndaitwah, in Windhoek yesterday.  The move follows a recent congress resolution by the ruling Swapo Party.

Briefing reporters, the Ministers said Government was aware of “the uneasiness among the media fraternity about the call by the Swapo congress for the creation of a media council by Government.  “Our Government has to implement the SADC Protocol on Culture, Information and Sport, to which it is a party,” she said.  The new institution is purportedly in line with a protocol on culture and information all 14 member states of the Southern African Development Community (SADC) had to adhere to, she said….

Nandi-Ndaitwah gave no indication when the Media Council wold be established, but said that the media would be consulted.  “But Government has the last say in this matter, also under which Government institution it should be run or if it would be an independent body,” said the Minister.  “Ever since I took over at the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting, I have been calling on the media to get their house in order and to get a media council or media mediator off the ground, to accommodate complaints from the public,” she said.

“The argument that laws are in place to deal with media transgressions does not hold water, simply because the process of going to court is expensive, tedious and it takes too long,” she added.  “Unfortunately, the media has been dragging its feet on this very important issue.  My Ministry will start working on the matter to assist the media to provide quality services to the Namibian people.  The input from the media institutions will be sought, but Government will have to finalise the process as you have let your time pass without doing what was expected,” she told reporters.

Article 20 of the SADC Protocol stipulates that “State Parties shall take necessary measures to ensure the freedom and independence of the media”, while Article 21, which deals with the code of ethics, says, “State Parties shall encourage the establishment or strengthening of codes of ethics by various sectors of the media through the creation of an enabling environment for the formulation of such frameworks.”  Nowhere does it stipulate that a media council should be set up by governments.

Asked if the existing independent Media Institute of Southern Africa (Misa), which has its headquarters in Windhoek, was not sufficient for public complaints, Nandi-Ndaitwah did not answer directly, but repeated that the “public, being the customers of the media” required an institution to launch their complaints.   —>
http://www.namibian.com.na/2008/February/national/08E57F3EAC.html
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Social Media Measurement
by Paul Hyland
Paul’s Web Space 2.0 – Politics, Culture, Technology
02/08/08

Social media applications are developing at such a rapid clip that measurement technologies haven’t really kept pace. I have the daunting task of determining what success means for the social media efforts underway at edweek.org, and then even more challenging, how to measure it. In my mind, success in our community efforts can be envisioned following a continuum of goals:
1. Traffic…
2. Engagement…
3. Impact…

These ideas cover only the measurement of social media content contributed to our site by our readers. Left untouched (so far) is the impact that will be felt as we engage in the larger conversation on the World Wild Web, via RSS feeds, social networks, widgets, social bookmarks, tagging and the like. Look in a future post for my treatment of the measurement of and ROI related to these efforts, the effects of which are even less well understood at this point.

I realize that this is already way too long, but I also want to pass along quality reference and background material from some of my favorite thinkers in this space.   —>
http://www.paulhyland.com/2008/02/social-media-measurement.html
~

compiled by Rob McCausland
Alliance for Community Media
202-393-2650
web:  http://ourchannels.org
wiki:  http://peg.ourchannels.org

Community Media: Selected Clippings – 01/28/08

January 28, 2008

Editorial: How will AT&T’s Legislation affect Channel 9?
by Mark Madison
WBHS9 (TN)

Dear Editor:
Your recent article regarding AT&T’s proposed legislation stirred a response from Paul Stinson, Manager of Regulatory and External Affairs for AT&T. On January 7th, a meeting was held with Mr. Stinson, Mr. Keidel, a concerned parent and me. After the meeting I sat down and composed a list comparing the status quo with what AT&T has proposed for Access channels like WBHS9.    —>
http://www.wcs.edu/bhs/WBHS9/WBHS-9/editorial.htm
~

Carney, Markell, meet for debate on public access show
Associated Press ( 3 comments)
Delaware Online
01/28/08

WILMINGTON – The two prominent Democrats vying for the party’s nomination for governor met face-to-face Sunday for their first debate of the campaign.  Lt. Gov. John Carney and state Treasurer Jack Markell appeared on a public access television program hosted by Wilmington City Councilman Charles Potter.   —>
http://www.delawareonline.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20080128/NEWS/80128008
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Symington vies with Douglas for public access viewers
by Terri Hallenbeck (8 comments)
Burlington Free Press (VT)
01/28/08

MONTPELIER — Vermonters who click their way to public access television thinking they might catch a glimpse of the governor’s news conferences, as they did in the past, are finding a different Statehouse show.  Gov. Jim Douglas’ news conferences have not been aired on public access television stations since July, when the last production company’s contract ended. Those tapings will resume this week, Douglas spokesman Jason Gibbs said, with the governor’s staff doing the camera work.

Starting last week, House Speaker Gaye Symington launched her own “In Your Statehouse” show. The half-hour program focuses on a different topic each week.  “It’s an effort to help Vermonters understand our work,” she said.  Symington said her political action committee, the Speaker’s Circle, is paying the cost of production — about $74-$80 a week. The tapes are sent to public access television stations around the state…

… Lauren-Glenn Davitian, executive director of CCTV, said Vermont politicians have long seen the advantage of reaching constituents directly. Former Gov. Howard Dean did it when he was lieutenant governor. Douglas did it when he was treasurer and secretary of state, she said.
http://www.burlingtonfreepress.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20080128/NEWS02/80128006/1007
~

AT&T will start offering TV service
Video option begins Monday in suburbs
by Jon Van
Chicago Tribune (IL)
01/28/08

After a few false starts and missed deadlines, AT&T Inc. launches video service for residents in most Chicago suburbs Monday.  AT&T’s TV service, called U-verse, will become available in parts of 175 suburbs. The rollout will be low-key to guard against unrealistic consumer expectations, AT&T executives said, but it does mark the phone giant’s largest foray into television.   —>
http://www.chicagotribune.com/business/chi-mon_att_0128jan28,1,6554781.story?ctrack=1&cset=true
~

U-verse TV Pitched to Chicago Suburbs
AT&T Launches in 175-Plus Northeast Illinois Communities
by Todd Spangler
Multichannel News
01/28/08

AT&T is blowing U-verse TV into more than 175 communities surrounding the Windy City, in what the telco claimed is the largest initial rollout to date for the Internet Protocol TV service.   The launch in northeastern Illinois — where the telco primarily will challenge Comcast — is the largest for U-verse in terms of how widely the service is available on Day One, AT&T spokeswoman Jenny Parker said, without providing specific numbers.

AT&T last week announced it had racked up 231,000 U-verse TV subscribers at the end of 2007, up 83% from 126,000 three months earlier, and claimed it’s on track to reach 1 million subscribers by the close of this year.  U-verse services are available in parts of more than 175 Chicago-area communities, including Bellwood, Buffalo Grove, Crystal Lake, Dolton, Elmhurst, Harvey, Hoffman Estates, Melrose Park, Oak Lawn, Orland Park, River Grove, St. Charles and Waukegan.   —>
http://www.multichannel.com/article/CA6526176.html?desc=topstory
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Media consolidation concerns Adelstein
by Faith Bremner
Sioux Falls Argus Leader
01/28/08

WASHINGTON – Being a member of the Federal Communications Commission is a high-tech, high-stress job, but Jonathan Adelstein seems to thrive on it.  President Bush last month nominated the 45-year-old South Dakota native for a second five-year term to help lead the agency that regulates radio, television, wire, satellite and cable. The Senate is expected to approve his nomination. Before joining the FCC, Adelstein was a senior legislative aide to former Sen. Tom Daschle, D-S.D.

Adelstein, one of two Democrats on the five-member commission, has publicly clashed with his Republican counterparts, most recently over a December decision to allow large media companies to own television stations and newspapers in the top 20 media markets.  Adelstein spoke recently about some of the big issues that have gone before the FCC.   —>
http://www.argusleader.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20080128/NEWS/801280301/1001
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Youth radio earns its full street cred
by Sally Jones
Worcester News (UK)
01/28/08

An internet radio station for young people in Worcestershire has begun broadcasting on FM after being awarded a community radio licence.  Youthcomm Radio, Worcester’s first and only youth community radio station, was established several years ago by Worcestershire County Council’s youth support service.  Since then, it has only been able to broadcast over the internet, but now anyone with a radio will be able to tune in to listen at 106.7FM.

Youthcomm radio co-ordinator Chris Fox said: “The station is a unique opportunity for Worcestershire’s young people to get involved in radio and media.  “They can be involved in producing and presenting the station’s content both on air and behind the scenes.”

The county council’s youth support staff, who help the youngsters to prepare and present the station’s programmes, are working in partnership with Youth Community Media, and Worcester College of Technology and the University of Worcester.   —>
http://www.worcesternews.co.uk/display.var.1999780.0.youth_radio_earns_its_full_street_cred.php
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“Directions and Implications of Advanced Computing Symposium”
Conference on Online Deliberation (DIAC-2008/OD2008)
Sponsored by Computer Professionals for Social Responsibility and UC Berkeley School of Information
June 26 – 29, 2008
Tools of Participation (CA)
01/27/08

At the dawn of the 21st century humankind faces challenges of profound proportions. The ability of people around the world to discuss, work, make decisions, and take action collaboratively is one of the most important capabilities for addressing these challenges.

Researchers, scholars, activists, advocates, artists, educators, technologists, designers, students, policy-makers, entrepreneurs, journalists and citizens are rising to these challenges in many ways,including, devising new communication technologies that build on the opportunities afforded by the Internet and other new (as well as old) media. The interactions between technological and social systems are of special and central importance in this area.

DIAC-08 combines CPSR’s 11th DIAC symposium with the third Conference on Online Deliberation. The joint conference is intended to provide a platform and a forum for highlighting socio-technological opportunities, challenges, and pitfalls in the area of community and civic action. Technology enhanced community action ranges from informal communities of practice to democratic governance of formal organizations to large
social movements.   —>
http://penplusbytes.blogspot.com/2008/01/directions-and-implications-of-advanced.html
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National League of Cities Television Partners with BIA Information Network to Offer ActiveAccess Desktop Application to Its Members
Business Wire
Ad-hoc-news.de
01/28/08

BIA Information Network, a leading provider of private-label desktop applications, announced today that it has partnered with the National League of Cities Television (NLC TV) to support efforts to inform its 19,000 members in real-time about events, news alerts, and updated video content on best practices in city management.

‘As a service to our members we wanted to identify a method that would provide them valuable information and updates on our web content in an efficient manner,’ said David Gardy, chairman and CEO of TV Worldwide, producers of NLC TV. ‘With ActiveAccess, NLC TV has found an efficient and proven method of keeping them abreast of what’s happening in city government by using a cutting-edge technology that everyone can easily access and use.’

Through the NLC TV website members from municipalities across the country can download the free ActiveAccess desktop application, a light-weight, non-intrusive program. Once installed users will be alerted automatically when new content is posted, or they can access events, materials, and webcasts directly through the application. For example, videos can be accessed and viewed through the computer desktop without having to open or activate a web browser, making it much easier for members to access desired content.

Because NLC TV can continuously change the content on the ActiveAccess-driven portal page with important information for its members, Gardy sees the new tool as a competitive advantage for NLC TV to create a community within the nation’s cities.   —>
http://www.ad-hoc-news.de/Aktie/12717381/News/15209585/ADVA.html
~

Kaltura and Intelligent Television Partner to Enhance Cultural and Educational Projects With Rich-Media Collaboration
Marketwire.com
01/28/08

Kaltura, Inc., a pioneer in Collaborative Media, and Intelligent Television, a new nonfiction media company, announced today that the organizations will work together on several joint experiments revolving around culture and education using rich-media in the community.

“Intelligent Television is all about educational productions, public media, and community projects, so Kaltura’s concept of group collaboration in rich-media fits our business philosophy like a glove,” said Peter B. Kaufman from Intelligent Television. “Featuring the Kaltura platform in our new productions and in our research projects with moving image archives is very exciting.”

The companies invite the community to join and contribute time, skills and ideas, as well as suggestions of relevant projects.  “It’s great to work with Intelligent Television, a producer with the same values and visions of community and joint creation as Kaltura,” said Ron Yekutiel, Chairman and CEO of Kaltura. “This relationship is an important addition to the Kaltura Global Network, en route of making Kaltura the standard of online rich-media editing and collaboration.”

Kaltura and Intelligent Television will work on a variety of joint projects including a new documentary history of the Korean War with Jigsaw Productions and Intelligent Television’s multiyear Memory Project.  “The Longest Winter” tells the story of America in the Korean War based on the book “The Longest Winter” from Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist David Halberstam. “The Longest Winter” film is centered on eyewitness accounts and archival media, including rare color film shot during the conflict. Producers Intelligent Television and Jigsaw Productions combine traditional narration, contemporary voices from soldiers and others caught in the events, interviews with veterans, and Halberstam’s words and voice to bring a new sensory experience to the telling of wartime history — and a fresh sense of relevance for the television viewer of today. Using Kaltura’s platform, the archive of material from the film and many of the interviews that are being conducted will be made available to the public to annotate and mix online — see more at http://www.kaltura.com/index.php/browse?kshow_id=99428.   —>
http://www.marketwire.com/mw/release.do?id=814836
~

compiled by Rob McCausland
Alliance for Community Media
202-393-2650
web:  http://ourchannels.org
wiki:  http://peg.ourchannels.org

Community Media: Selected Clippings – 01/26/08

January 27, 2008

Live Blogging during PEG Congressional Hearing
Free Press Action Network
01/25/08

On Tuesday, Jan. 29 [at 1:00 PM], the Free Press Action Network will hold a live-blogging session during the congressional hearing, “Public, Educational, and Governmental (PEG) Services in the Digital TV Age”.

Activists and community leaders will be discussing the hearing as it unfolds.  Listen to the Audio Webcast and add your comments below.   —>
http://www.freepress.net/actionnetwork/node/401
~

City to ask Legislature to revisit Sunday alcohol sales, annexation expansion
by Robert DeWitt
Tuscaloosa News (AL)
01/26/08

Issues ranging from Sunday alcohol sales to extra-territorial zoning will be topics for discussion Monday when the Tuscaloosa City Council meets with members of the Tuscaloosa County legislative delegation.  City Council members will sit down with 10 legislators who represent portions of Tuscaloosa County to discuss its legislative agenda over breakfast at the Jemison Mansion. The city will ask legislators to tackle issues it lacks the power to address…

…The city opposes any blanket statewide franchising for video delivery systems. The law currently requires cable television companies to obtain franchises from cities. Now telephone companies and others are developing alternative delivery systems.  City officials want these companies subject to the same franchising regulations, Maddox said.  “If the telephone companies can provide cable service, they should have to enter into a franchise agreement like the cable companies,” he said.   —>
http://www.tuscaloosanews.com/article/20080126/LATEST/690624097/-1/NEWS03
~

If you value public access TV, speak up
Bainbridge Island Review (WA)
01/26/08

Do you watch Bainbridge Island Television?  More precisely, do you watch it for programming besides the City Council meetings?  It’s neither a flippant question nor an idle one. BITV’s  regular viewership is surely amongst the questions in play as the station management and the city wrangle over revenue from a cable franchise agreement and other sources.

As reported Wednesday, station manager Scott Schmidt wants BITV to get a bigger slice – actually, the whole pie – of the approximately $190,000 in franchise fees paid by Comcast to the city for the right to do business on Bainbridge Island. BITV presently gets about $120,000 of that revenue, and half of the $54,000 generated by a dollar-per-month surcharge to subscribers to support public access programming. The balance disappears into the city’s general fund, although some of the money is earmarked for better lighting, cameras and other improvements to the chambers from which public meetings are broadcast.

Schmidt says the station needs more money to pay for services either requested by the city itself (adding a second channel; providing online “streaming” of council meetings) or the community at large. Some of the planned programming is Schmidt’s own inspiration, like the weekly news program BITV hopes to roll out in April. While it’s ambitious, it’s not unprecedented; back in the early 1990s when Texas-based Northland Cable still held the island franchise, news was actually integral to the programming. At one point the station boasted a three-person news team and showed footage from local events almost daily. The presentation could be somewhat clunky; we remember a rash of broadcasts in which colors swirled around like a light show at Bill Graham’s Fillmore. But despite the technical limitations, “Northland Cable News” showed the possibilities of local access television and laid the groundwork for today’s programming. Schmidt believes a new, more professional news show would attract both viewers and – at least as important – underwriting dollars from local businesses.

Thinking back 15 years, it is remarkable how far what was then known as “Bainbridge Island Broadcasting” has come. Modern equipment and a dedicated studio on High School Road mean new opportunities to learn videography. Volunteers contribute countless hours to support daylong programming. City Council coverage has grown into the station’s bread and butter, the point at which the interests of station, city and community most clearly intersect.

Yet in some ways, its profile is unchanged. Schmidt says some people still come into the office thinking they can pay their cable bill. (You can’t; BITV and Comcast are separate entities.) It’s also no easier to gauge what the viewership really is. Schmidt approached the Nielsen folks about tracking the ratings but found costs were prohibitive. With no way to precisely measure just who’s watching, and how often, now’s the time for Bainbridge Island Television viewers to speak up on behalf of the station.

Do you like what you see on our local access station? Do you even watch? What’s the value to you? We’d like to hear from viewers on that point. As their contract negotiations roll on, we suspect BITV and the city would, too.
http://www.bainbridgereview.com/portals-code/list.cgi?paper=96&cat=48&id=1145744&more=0
~

The Winds of Change
Potential Reform of FCC Could Go in Many Directions
by Ted Hearn
Multichannel News
01/28/08

The House Energy and Commerce Committee is shining a spotlight on FCC chairman Kevin Martin’s management of the agency. (See “Watching the Martin Watch,” page 18, Jan. 21, 2008).  But it hasn’t been made clear to him precisely why.

The basis of the investigation has been stated only in vague terms. And there could be something of a public payback involved: Committee chairman John Dingell (D-Mich.) is evidently upset that Martin gave the public just 28 days to review the FCC plan to relax the newspaper-TV station cross-ownership ban.

But there is always more than meets the public eye when the winds of change blow in. Privately, Dingell has heard repeatedly from regulated industries — including cable operators and programmers — that Martin has failed to state proposed rules in clear terms, producing a process that lacks transparency and due process.

“I think time is overdue for a serious look at the reform of how the FCC conducts itself,” National Cable & Telecommunications Association president Kyle McSlarrow told reporters in December. “I think everybody recognizes that there is something different about how the [Martin] FCC conducts its business.”

In 2007, an annus horribilis for cable at the FCC, Martin at least twice demonstrated his fondness for hide-the-ball tactics. He gave no indication in June that he planned to slash rates that programmers pay cable operators to lease time, and he gave no indication that he supported allowing the NFL Network and other independent programmers to haul cable operators before an FCC-authorized arbitrator to settle their disputes without even a finding of discrimination by cable operators.

Now, Martin is trying to impose wholesale a la carte regulations on cable programmers, forcing The Walt Disney Co. and Viacom to sell their channels at individual prices. That could mean price regulation by the FCC, if Heritage Foundation analyst James Gattuso is right that wholesale a la carte mandates can’t work without government price controls. Since that’s the case, programmers are wondering if Martin plans to regulate wholesale a la carte prices but, as he’s done in the past, hasn’t told anybody.

Cable’s frustration with Martin has made an issue of how the agency is run. From Dingell to Sen. John D. (Jay) Rockefeller (W.Va.) on the Democratic side to Rep. Joe Barton of Texas on the Republican side, attention is now focused on how much power does and should accrue to an FCC chairman, an unelected bureaucrat with the ability to inflict pain on selected opponents, almost with impunity.

NCTA’s McSlarrow goes so far as to call for the FCC to be turned into a forum that adjudicates complaints, with its rulemaking authority taken away in five years.  Rockefeller has indicated support for structural reform, perhaps reducing the five-year terms of commissioners and refocusing its mission toward consumer protection.  But, as the following examples illustrate, reforming the FCC is not a simple task.   —>
http://www.multichannel.com/article/CA6525874.html
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The Other India and Media
Mainstream Weekly
by Suhas Borker
01/26/08

—>   We know about BPL—Below Poverty Line—but let us also know about Below Media Line—BML. The poor, oppressed, marginalised millions in this country are Below Media Line. If the media does not look at 840 million Indians who do not have more than Rs 20 a day or is not concerned about their future, it is abetting a “Second Partition”,4 which will burst forth like a tsunami of agony and pain, engulfing the whole country. It will be more dehumanising than the one 60 years ago.

Many see it as a wake-up call to the so-called present National Media to connect with the voiceless. To rise above the glitz and razzmatazz of film stars, fashion shows and elitist gizmos that unwrap on advertising which mocks the poor for their poverty, is a choice now. The people’s movements and grassroots organisations which represent the Other India are anyway going to move on regardless. And with them will be a new emerging media—an inclusive media empowered by new technologies encompassing community press, radio, TV and web. It may take some time to link up. Mainstream media or alternative media? It will be the media of the Other India of 840 million Indians.   —>
http://www.mainstreamweekly.net/article518.html
~

Decision to Shut Down AZN Television a Huge Loss to Asian American Community
PRNewswire
01/26/08

The Asian American Journalists Association (AAJA) today expressed disappointment at the decision by Comcast to shut down AZN Television in April this year, calling it a big loss of yet another important venue through which the American public can learn more about Asians and Pacific Islanders through community-specific news and entertainment.

While understanding that this was primarily a business decision, AAJA lamented the fact that the demise of AZN is the second big blow to the AAPI community in less than six months. In October last year, KQED in San Francisco discontinued its nationally syndicated public radio program, “Pacific Time,” developed to provide news about Asia, Asian American communities and connections across the Pacific Ocean. Like “Pacific Time,” AZN offered broad education through broadcast and online media.

In many ways, “AZN is to the Asian American community just like Univision is to the Latino and BET is to the African American communities, respectively,” said Rene Astudillo, AAJA executive director. He added that AAJA “has partnered with AZN in many ways to ensure that more Asian Americans are given the opportunity to use their journalism and new media skills to enhance the delivery of news and information to the American public.” AAJA’s most recent partnership with AZN involved internship opportunities for students to post journalism-style news and editorial commentary on the network’s Web site.  Astudillo said that AAJA is happy and ready to offer its resources to Comcast and other broadcast networks to develop major programming specifically addressing issues and stories of Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders.    —>
http://sev.prnewswire.com/publishing-information-services/20080126/CLSA01026012008-1.html
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University of Miami: February 26-68
We Media Forum to Explore and Celebrate Innovation in a Connected Society
PR-USA.net

More than two hundred thought leaders, social entrepreneurs and media pioneers are expected to gather next month in Miami, Fla., for the fourth-annual We Media Forum and Festival from February 26 to 28. The two-day event, organized and produced by iFOCOS, the Reston, Va.-based media think tank, will bring together leaders from across industry sectors to jumpstart innovative thinking and new media ventures.  For more details and to register, go to: www.wemediamiami.org.

“We Media is not just an industry conference. It’s a knowledge-sharing network. It’s about being inspired,” says Dale Peskin, co-founder of iFOCOS, which also organizes the We Media Community, an online network of companies and individuals.

The University of Miami School of Communication is co-hosting the conference, which kicks off with a reception on Tuesday night. The Associated Press, an iFOCOS global partner, is sponsoring the conference, along with Washington.Post.Newsweek.Interactive, Reuters, NewsGator, Topix, Humana and AARP. Additional media sponsors include BlogHer, the Association for Alternative Newsweeklies, Daily Me, the Institute for Politics, Democracy & the Internet, LatinVision Media, PaidContent.org, SourceForge, and the Innovators Network.   —>
http://www.pr-usa.net/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=61176&Itemid=9
~

French Media Reforms
by Rizwan Ghani
American Chronicle
01/26/08

Reportedly, President Nicolas Sarkozy has decided to reform French media. The media shakeup details include scrapping up of Arabic and English languages services of Channel 24 and restricting the Channel to French language, only. The reports show that French National TV will be disallowed annual advertisements worth 800 million Euros.

Keeping French as the only language on Channel 24 in presence of Arab and handful of other minorities in France will add another item to the minorities discontentment list. In wake of 2007 standoff with minorities Paris could used state media to develop better relations with minorities instead of doing away with programs in other languages on Channel 24.

The independent observers are waiting for details of planned shakeup but there is a consensus that the direction of changes does not bode well for the media independence. It is believed that French media´s coverage of Sarkozy´s Egypt tour may have precipitated the reform plan. Otherwise, also there is a growing perception that it is the start of love-hate relationship between Sarkozy and French media.   —>
http://www.americanchronicle.com/articles/50291
~

compiled by Rob McCausland
Alliance for Community Media
202-393-3650
web:  http://ourchannels.org
wiki: http://peg.ourchannels.org

Community Media: Selected Clippings – 01/18/08

January 20, 2008

Media group calls for release of two Afghan journalists
AFP-Google
01/16/08

KABUL — Reporters Without Borders has called on the Afghan government to release two journalists accused of blasphemy, for which conservative religious clerics have demanded the death penalty.  The international media watchdog said Thursday it was concerned about the fate of the men, arrested separately about two months ago.

Sayed Perwiz Kambakhsh, 23, was picked up in northern Afghanistan in late October on charges of blasphemy and defaming Islam for distributing articles about the role of women in Muslim society, the group said.  Mohammad Ghaws Zalmai, in his 40s, was arrested in November while trying to escape to Pakistan after an uproar about a translation of the Koran that he distributed and was alleged to “misinterpret” parts of the Muslim holy book.   —>
http://afp.google.com/article/ALeqM5iiUEgLNDv7K1ZNcZcnVFr9TriKwQ
~

City Sponsored Cable Franchise Hearings… (NYC)
by Arthur (3 comments)
LiveJournal
01/18/08

—>   New York City will be holding five (5) public hearings, one in each Borough, to solicit comments from subscribers regarding the NYC CableTV Franchise Renewal of Time Warner Cable, in Manhattan, Brooklyn,Queens and Staten Island and Cablevision, in the Bronx and Brooklyn.Hearings will take place from 3pm-7pm on the following dates and siteswith informative websites. Written and/or oral comments may bepresented at the hearing or to NYC DoITT by submitting comments here.

Bronx: January 17, 2008
Queens: January 22, 2008
Staten Island: January 24, 2008
Brooklyn: January 31, 2008
Manhattan: February 7, 2008
—>
http://community.livejournal.com/newyorkers/3620627.html
~

Don’t Change the Channel. Change the System.
by Josh Silver (34 comments)
The Huffington Post
01/18/08

Mainstream media — especially television — is like an alcoholic that keeps binging, repenting, swearing sobriety, and returning to the bottle. Problem is, it’s the American public that’s getting poisoned by their lethal stew of horse-race election analysis, celebrity gossip and soundbite coverage. We go to the voting booth — a right that people fought and died for — knowing very little about what the candidates actually stand for. And you can forget about any information on candidates like Dennis Kucinich and Ron Paul, whom the press has shut out of the debate — literally.

While Wolf Blitzer is throwing softballs at another candidate, Bill O’Reilly is blaming every problem on liberals, and your local news anchor is reporting on a car wreck, we are left without a clue about the issues that count. We don’t know if the president’s “surge” in Iraq is actually working. Or if the recent skirmish between U.S. warships and Iranian speedboats is a real incident or a Pentagon PR stunt. And what are the real implications of China’s $1.4 trillion trade surplus that increases by $1 billion every day? Or what important decision was made by your City Council or school board last night?

Before you shake your head and say that TV doesn’t matter in the age of the Internet, consider this: According to a report recently released by the Pew Research Center, local TV stations remain the No. 1 source of presidential election news. Cable TV news is second; network TV news is third. TV continues to completely dominate as the opinion leader in American politics.

But at some point you need to stop throwing your remote at the TV. Going outside and yelling that you’re “fed up and you’re not going to take it anymore” isn’t working, folks. It’s time to understand what’s really wrong with the media and what’s really needed to fix it. One word: profits.  You can dress up a cash cow and make it look like a news operation, but at the end of the day, they’re milking the information lifeline that nurtures our democracy.   —>
http://www.huffingtonpost.com/josh-silver/dont-change-the-channel_b_82208.html
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Aide’s new job raises no flags for Bredesen
by Bonna Johnson (2 comments)
The Tennessean
01/18/08

Gov. Phil Bredesen said he sees no ethical conflict with his communications director leaving his staff to work for a public affairs firm that represents AT&T, which is engaged in a fierce legislative battle with cable companies.  Bob Corney, who joined the governor’s staff in February 2004, is leaving at the end of the month. He is not permitted to lobby for a year under the state’s ethics law.   —>
http://www.tennessean.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20080118/NEWS0201/801180415
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Bredesen to cave in on AT&T bill?
by R. Neal (1 comment)
TennViews (TN)
01/18/08

Looks like Bredesen is set to cave in on the AT&T cable franchise bill. Coincidentally, his communications director has just left and gone to work for AT&T’s lobbyist.  Gov. Bredesen cites the need to expand broadband access as the justification. I agree we need expanded broadband access. This is not, however, the way to achieve it.   —>
http://www.tennviews.com/node/461
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Bredesen weighs getting involved in AT&T vs. cable
by John Rodgers
Nashville City Paper (TN)
01/18/08

Gov. Phil Bredesen said Thursday he is considering getting involved in the fight between AT&T and the cable industry over creating a statewide television franchise.  But Bredesen, who stayed out of the brouhaha between the two parties last year, said he would not be coming down on the side of AT&T or the cable industry.  Instead, Bredesen said if he got involved it would be to explore ways to deploy more broadband Internet access into rural areas, which he says is currently insufficient.  “It’s particularly acute in rural areas of our state, which as you know I’m concerned very much about promoting business in,” Bredesen told reporters Thursday. “So I think the possibility exists. I’m not promising it.”   —>
http://www.nashvillecitypaper.com/news.php?viewStory=58575
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Connect Kentucky Article Raises Bell Lobby Specter
by Drew Clark (1 comment)
DrewClark.com
01/17/08

Art Brodsky’s 4,789-word article about Connect Kentucky and its offspring Connected Nation has been the talk of telecom circles over the past week…

…What Connect Kentucky doesn’t do, or at least doesn’t advertise doing, is measuring competition in the broadband marketplace. Knowing where broadband is available and where it isn’t available is only the first step in our nation’s broadband quotient. Knowing where broadband competition is available, and who the competitors are, is the crucial next step.

Connect Kentucky and Connected Nation don’t speak much, if at all, about this aspect of broadband mapping. In fact, the Durbin and Inouye bills sidestep this challenge completely. Ed Markey’s “Broadband Census of America Act,” by contrast, clearly states that local information about broadband competitors will be made available to the public. It appears that the Connected Nation approach to broadband mapping, as articulated in the Durbin and Inouye bills, doesn’t contemplate public access to or knowledge about the companies that provide broadband within a given area.   —>
http://www.drewclark.com/connect-kentucky-article-raises-bell-lobby-specter/
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With Comcast Under Fire, Vuze Enjoys Growth Surge
The P2P service claims to have signed up 17 million subscribers since its launch one year ago and says it’s adding 2 million users per month.
by Richard Martin
InformationWeek
01/18/08

While controversy swirls around the struggle between traditional big-pipe entertainment providers to the home — specifically the cable carriers and namely Comcast (NSDQ: CMCSA), the nation’s largest cable TV service — and providers of online peer-to-peer content services, particularly BitTorrent, the market for online movies and other forms of content continues to grow apace.

That growth is benefiting startups like Vuze, the P2P service launched last year by Azureus, one of the biggest BitTorrent client software providers.

Calling itself “the world’s most popular entertainment platform for DVD-quality and HD video content,” Vuze claims to have signed up 17 million subscribers since its launch one year ago and says it’s adding 2 million users per month. Last month the Palo Alto, Calif., company announced a $20 million funding round led by New Enterprise Associates. NEA managing director Mike Ramsay, the co-founder and former CEO of TiVo, joined the Vuze board of directors.

Vuze has become involved in the effort to force Comcast to stop slowing traffic on its network devoted to big file-sharing programs, particularly BitTorrent — which is now thought to account for as much as 50% of all Internet traffic in the United States. On Nov. 14 Vuze filed a petition with the Federal Communications Commission demanding that the commission set rules governing traffic management by large Internet service providers, and that ISPs be forced to publicly reveal their policies toward traffic filtering and “shaping.”   —>
http://www.informationweek.com/internet/showArticle.jhtml?articleID=205901705
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Show Us Your Reel Brooklyn: A Video Contest for Brooklyn Teens
by The Changeling
Bed-StuyBlog (NY)
01/18/08

I recently received this information about a video contest open to 9-12th graders in Brooklyn. I sounds like an exciting opportunity for a young filmmaker-to-be:

BRIC Arts | Media | Bklyn announces Show Us Your Reel Brooklyn, a borough-wide teen video contest that will launch the new Brooklyn Independent Television show BK 4 Reel. Brooklyn Independent Television is a flagship initiative of Brooklyn Community Access Television (BCAT), a program of BRIC Arts | Media | Bklyn.

Participants in the contest are being asked to send in a 2-3 minute video of Brooklyn from their own unique perspective. The video may be in any genre; however, it must be shot in Brooklyn by a 9th-12th grader who either lives in, or attends high school in, the Borough of Brooklyn…  The contest deadline is February 20, 2008. Official contest entry forms are available at briconline.org/bcat and myspace.com/brooklyntv. Students with specific questions about the contest may write to bk4reel [at] briconline.org.   —>
http://www.bedstuyblog.com/2008/01/18/show-us-your-reel-brooklyn-a-video-contest-for-brooklyn-teens/
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Katonah-Lewisboro communications plan
District looks to improve communications
by Matt Dalen
Lewisboro Ledger (NY)
01/18/08

—>  On Thursday, Jan. 10, Superintendent of Schools Dr. Robert Roelle presented a draft of the district’s new communications plan to the school board, proposing a widespread strategy to disperse information to residents, through more meetings, the Internet, cable television, the media, and “backpack mail” flyers…

… The full “public information plan,” as presented by Dr. Roelle, would include a part-time (60% of the work week) public information officer and webmaster, as well as a full-time cable television coordinator. Money for the public information officer was included in the 2007-08 school budget, but has not yet been spent.  A cable television coordinator would need to be included in a future budget should the school board agree that such a position is needed.  How much a potential coordinator would be paid was not addressed. Dr. Roelle told The Ledger later that he had looked at coordinators in two school districts, which paid between $65,000 and $75,000, but that the district would need to make a decision when and if the position made it into a budget.

“We don’t think we’re maximizing the use of cable television,” said Dr. Roelle. He mentioned ideas for broadcasting student performances, timely discussions and more athletic events on public access television, which in Lewisboro is Channel 20. While some athletic events are now broadcast on Channel 20, not all of them are, and the only school-based talk show is the student-produced Straight Talk, which is broadcast intermittently.   —>
http://www.acorn-online.com/news/publish/lewisboro/27632.shtml
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Support Free Speech! Judge August to Decide on Future of Public Access
by Cynthia Thomet
Akaku: Maui Community Television (HI)
01/18/08

Show your support for public access and Akaku on Thursday, Jan. 24 at 8:15 a.m. at the Second Circuit Court in Wailuku. We are asking supporters to dress in black and appear in court as Judge Joel August presides over Akaku’s case against the Department of Commerce and Consumer Affairs (DCCA) and the State of Hawaii. Through a controversial and unlawful request for proposal (RFP) process that would put PEG access under the influence of state bureaucracies instead of the general public and community organizations, the DCCA and the State of Hawaii have been attempting to take the public out of public access .   —>
http://www.akaku.org/?p=33
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Canada Begins Curbing Cross-Ownership
Radio World Newspaper
01/18/08

Canada’s communications regulator has instituted a new media ownership policy to maintain “a diversity of voices” in the country’s broadcasting system.  The Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission has established a new policy restricting cross-ownership. A person or entity will only be permitted to control two of three types of media serving the same market: a local radio or television station or a local newspaper.   —>
http://www.rwonline.com/pages/s.0100/t.10745.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