Archive for the ‘municipal WiMax’ category

Community Media: Selected Clippings – 04/28/08

April 29, 2008

[ Here’s what you call one of them ‘anecdotal’ reports of the positive effects of PEG access programming.  Just as with our friendly smiles and “good morning” greetings to strangers, sometimes we never know the positive effects our actions have.  Stories like this are among the reasons we’re driven to keep these channels alive and flowing. ~ rm ]

Why Bother?
by Amy Gates
Crunchy Domestic Goddess
04/28/08

[ 25 comments ]

This evening as Jody and Ava were out running an errand for me, I attempted to cook dinner while balancing a miserable Julian (due to his four canine teeth coming in at the same time) on my hip. After much fussing (on Julian’s part, not mine), I took a break from cooking, sat down on the couch, flipped on the TV and, hoping to make the poor boy feel a bit better, nursed him.

In skipping through the channels it became clear to me why I rarely watch TV (with the exception of The Office, LOST and occasionally Oprah). There was nothing on. I stopped on the local public access channel long enough to hear someone talking about global warming. My interest was piqued so I lingered.

It turns out it was a woman reading Michael Pollan’s recent New York Times article “Why Bother?” For those of you unfamiliar with Pollan, he is the author of The Omnivore’s Dilemma and In Defense of Food – neither of which I have read yet, but I’ve heard great things about both.

“Why Bother?” is a question I’ve been thinking about a lot lately. I’m nowhere near the point of throwing in the towel with regard to the things I do to help the environment, but after reading an article like ‘Enjoy life while you can’ – Climate science maverick James Lovelock believes catastrophe is inevitable, carbon offsetting is a joke and ethical living a scam and watching a YouTube video (which has since been taken down) about Monsanto, you might start to get a little jaded and wonder if all of your efforts are in vain. At least that’s where I’ve been at.

Pollan’s article “Why Bother?” was exactly what I needed to hear (and then read in full on the web since I missed the first half of it on TV) to help lift me out of my funk and I highly recommend you read the whole thing. Here’s just a bit of it.   —>
http://crunchydomesticgoddess.com/2008/04/28/why-bother/
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Davis criticizes Senate cable bill
by Matthew Penix
St. Tammany News (LA)
04/28/08

[ comments invited ]

Parish President Kevin Davis has joined Slidell city officials in hurling objections at a Senate bill that would provide a statewide-only franchising agreement for cable operators entering Louisiana, a move critics said would increase local cable fees for consumers.  Senate Bill 422, authored by Sen. Ann Duplessis, D-New Orleans, was modified this week to adhere to requests by the Louisiana Municipal Association to scale back the bill. But critics such as Davis still said the bill amounted to a slap in the face for local municipalities.

The bill, aimed to garner more competition from cable providers entering the state, would nix the roughly 400 so municipalities statewide from entering their own non-exclusive franchise agreements with cable providers. Instead, cable companies would adhere to one set of rules, dictated by the state, concerning how municipalities will earn taxes collected from the companies using their right of ways to set up infrastructure.

For instance, St. Tammany Parish and its municipalities collect franchise fees from cable providers, typically a 5 percent fee on total revenue generated in the area, to use for infrastructure or governmental needs. The fee is paid in exchange for those cable providers to use the publicly owned right of ways to set up cable lines and more.

Under the bill, those local agreements would be nixed. Instead of brokering 400 agreements, the interested companies would now broker only one deal, a move 14 others states have already initiated, and one that would attract more companies who don’t want to deal with the headache of brokering numerous deals, Duplessis said. Already AT&T has pumped $400 million into Louisiana’s communications infrastructure in hopes the bill passes, Duplessis said. That figure could not be confirmed as of deadline.   […]

But Davis, in a recent memo, blasted the bill, saying cable companies will be allowed to “cherry pick” which citizens they will serve according to their business model.  “I fully support more and better choices for cable television,” Davis said. “This bill, however, will not provide the competition that we all want.”

According to the National Association of Telecommunications Officers & Advisors, consumers in states that have enacted state-level franchising laws have seen their video service bills go up 8 to 50 percent, depending on the level of service, Davis said. In Texas, which enacted its franchise legislation in 2005, nearly every video provider increased its prices, he said.   —>
http://www.thesttammanynews.com/articles/2008/04/28/news/doc4815dad281a76874331234.txt
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House passes compromise AT&T bill
by John Rodgers
Nashville City Paper (TN)
04/28/08

[ 6 comments ]

The state House overwhelmingly passed a compromise bill this evening that AT&T says it needs to start offering television programming in Tennessee to compete with the cable industry.   —>
http://www.nashvillecitypaper.com/news.php?viewStory=59852
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Cable Bill Passes House
by Cara Kumari
WSMV Reporter Cara Kumari
04/28/08

[ comments invited ]

I’m driving back to the station from doing my live shot about some TennCare changes, but I popped into the House session to listen to the debate on the cable legislation. (I use the term “debate” loosely.)

You’ve probably heard at least something about the cable bill or seen the nonstop commercials on TV.  This basically allows any company (AT&T for now)  who wants to enter the cable game in the state to bypass local franchising and get their permit from the state.  Lawmakers tout the increase in choices this legislation will bring the cable consumer.  Realistically, they say, don’t expect to see a huge drop in cable prices.

Anyway, the “debate” on the House floor today consisted of several of the main sponsors thanking 10 to 12 people each who made this bill happened.  Then it was a quick vote of 92-2 (with 2 not voting) and then a huge round of applause.

To give you an idea of how intense the lobbying has been on this whole issue, here’s a quip from one lawmaker after it passed: “Well, now all of the lobbyists can officially go on vacation.”  No word on whether or not those commercials will ever stop airing, though.
http://carakumari.wordpress.com/2008/04/28/cable-bill-passes-house/

Election round-tables available on-line
by Lisa Vorderbrueggen
Inside Politics (CA)
04/28/08

[ comments invited ]

Televised election round-tables with June 3 primary candidates for Assembly Districts 14 and 15, the two races for the Contra Costa County Board of Supervisors and a debate on Propositions 98 and 99 are now posted on-line at the Contra Costa Times’ politics page.  I moderated the six, half-hour segments on April 23 and they will air on your local public access television station starting May 5. (I’ve posted the air date schedule below or you can visit http://www.contracostatv.org.)

The sponsors organized and paid for the production of the shows at no cost to the candidates. Sponsors include: Contra Costa Times, League of Women Voters of Diablo Valley, Contra Costa Council, Contra Costa TV, Contra Costa County Election Department, Comcast and the East Bay Community Foundation.  To save you a few clicks, I’ve also embedded the links to the shows here.   —>
http://www.ibabuzz.com/insidepolitics/2008/04/28/election-round-tables-available-on-line/
~

BVBL and 9500Liberty Debate On Television
by Greg L
Black Velvet Bruce Li (VA)
04/28/08

[ 33 comments ]

I was invited last week to join George Burke (who is also the Chairman of the 11th District Democratic Committee) on Fairfax Public Access television for a program on “Inside Scoop Virginia” this Sunday.  To my surprise, “documentarian” Annabel Park of 9500Liberty showed up to argue the other side in what was billed as a program on new media and the immigration debate, but ended up focusing mostly on the Rule of Law Resolution.  I think I held my own fairly well against two others that certainly wanted to argue that the Rule of Law Resolution is a bad idea, and the way it turned out the vast majority of callers to this local Fairfax County program ended up agreeing with me.

The first caller was from “Mona” who called in from California, apparently viewing the program on the internet.   —>
http://www.bvbl.net/index.php/2008/04/28/bvbl-and-9500liberty-debate-on-television/#more-2310
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Council: ‘We gotta work together,’ keep listening
by Craig Peterson
Lake County News-Sun (IL)
04/28/08

[ comments invited ]

WAUKEGAN — The City Council took no formal action last week on censoring audience time from its meetings, but every alderman addressed the issue during alderman’s time.   —>
http://www.suburbanchicagonews.com/newssun/news/918724,5_1_WA28_WAUKCOUNCIL_S1.article
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Show and tell
If Houston school district officials want to improve community relations, televise board meetings
Editorial: Houston Chronicle (TX)
04/27/08

[ 6 comments ]

During a hard-fought campaign last year to pass a bond issue, Houston Independent School District officials were lambasted by opponents for failing to get community input for the spending plan. The issue of school consolidation and some closings in mostly minority neighborhoods generated a voter backlash that nearly defeated the referendum.  HISD Superintendent Abelardo Saavedra says the district is working on initiatives to improve communications with the public. “Last fall as we did our bond issue,” the superintendent said, “the biggest message to us was ‘you’re not communicating, and when you do, it’s too late. It doesn’t mean anything.’ ”  […]

Although HISD has a fully staffed and equipped audio-visual capability with a public access cable channel at its disposal, the district board remains one of the few elective bodies in Houston that does not televise its meetings. Although the board recently moved its public sessions from 3 p.m. to a more accessible 5 p.m., airing the sessions on cable would allow a much bigger audience to acquaint itself with district policy.   —>
http://www.chron.com/disp/story.mpl/editorial/5734627.html
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AT&T still not definite on U-verse here
by Jeff Richgels
The Capital Times (WI)
04/28/08

[ 14 comments ]

AT&T is looking to hire 200 more technicians to install and service its U-verse TV service, which now is available to more than 200,000 homes in the Milwaukee, Racine and Sheboygan areas.  But even though the jobs include positions in south central Wisconsin, indicating that U-verse may be offered here in the near future, the company still isn’t saying when the Madison area might get U-verse.   —>
http://www.madison.com/tct/business/283540
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Parent Event: Are Your Kids Safe & Smart Online?
by Elliot Margolis
Midpeninsula Community Media Center (CA)
04/28/08

The Media Center is sponsoring a presentation for parents who want to keep up with what kids are doing online and acquire tips to keep them safe and smart internet-users. Patty Page, from the Common Sense Media Volunteer Speaker Bureau will present a media-rich, interactive program in the Media Center’s TV studio on Monday, May 19th beginning at 7:30. Doors open and light refreshments are available at 7 PM at 900 San Antonio Rd. in Palo Alto, near the 101 freeway.  […]  The 90-minute presentation and discussion will be videotaped.   —>
http://midpen-media-center.blogspot.com/2008/04/parent-event-are-your-kids-safe-smart.html
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Denver 8 TV Announces Updated Online Programming Site
by Jeanne Robb
Congress Park Neighborhood News (CO)
04/28/08 [?]

Denver 8 TV, the city’s Municipal Access Television channel, has launched an improved web site where users can find live programming of the channel and a rich archive of video programs recorded by Denver 8. The programs available include all meeting coverage of Denver City Council, numerous press announcements, community forum coverages and all the weekly and monthly programs produced by the channel.  —>
http://congressparkneighbors.org/WordPress/?p=22
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Director changes channels: WCAC head hired to lead NewTV
by Jeff Gilbride
Daily News Tribune (MA)
04/28/08

[ 11 comments ]

Robert Kelly, executive director at Waltham Community Access television for the last 18 years, has accepted the same position at NewTV, Newton’s cable access station.  Kelly said Friday he will start his new job on May 12. His last day with WCAC-TV will be May 9.  Kelly said because of his long tenure at the Waltham station he had “mixed emotions” when he applied for the position in Newton. But Kelly said the opportunity of working at a larger organization in a larger community was too good to pass up.   —>
http://www.dailynewstribune.com/news/x2124113393
~

International Summit for Community Wireless Networks: May 28, Washington DC
MuniWireless
04/28/08 [?]

The New America Foundation is holding its International Summit for Community Wireless Networks (IS4CWN) on May 28 – 30, 2008 in Washington, DC. The summit is co-hosted by the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) at its downtown headquarters. The event will bring together community wireless networking developers working to build universal, low-cost wireless broadband networks around the world. This year’s Summit will focus on how these networks can better serve their target populations, the policies needed to support broader deployment of community wireless systems, and the latest technological and software innovations.
http://www.muniwireless.com/2008/04/28/international-summit-community-wireless-networks-washingto/
~

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 – 03/16/08

March 17, 2008

The Future of American Communications Working Group
Institute for Information Policy, College of Communications
Pennsylvania State University

The Future of American Communications Working Group (FACT) will produce a volume outlining a new vision for communications policy in America and the practical steps needed to achieve it. The goal of the project is to produce a volume of work prescribing a comprehensive telecommunications policy agenda for the new federal administration to  be entering office in January 2009, an agenda that emphasizes the potential of information technologies for improving democratic discourse, social responsibility, and the quality of life, and the means by which information technologies can be made available to all Americans. —>
http://www.comm.psu.edu/FACT/
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Media center making MAX headway
by Mark Anderson
Kiowa County Signal (KS)
03/14/08

The Kiowa County Media Center Advisory Board came away from a 90-minute meeting last Thursday with community media center project lightning rod Bert Biles of Kansas State with an appreciation of how rapidly Biles and his colleagues have been moving forward in recent weeks on the matter.  The media center itself, as outlined in The Signal last week, would eventually occupy the second floor of a two-tiered building—tentatively named the Kiowa County Commons—that would house the county library, county historical museum and county extension offices on the ground level.

At the heart of the media center concept of providing Kiowa County residents with around-the-clock access to community information via the Internet, is the establishment of the newest wireless technology, known as WiMAX, within the county.  WiMAX features a considerably stronger signal than the conventional Wi-Fi currently used.  Placing a WiMAX transmitter, in fact, atop the county’s three grain elevators in Haviland, Greensburg and Mullinville should, according to Biles, reach 90 percent of the county’s population with a dependable wireless signal…

Biles, however, disclosed a plan for the media center to “get on the air” broadcasting, via the Internet, live coverage of events before the completion of the Commons building through the use of a portable, television production trailer.  He shared drawings of the proposed trailer, at 24 feet in length and eight feet in width.  Such events broadcast would range from county commission meetings to high school athletic events.   —>
http://www.kiowacountysignal.com/homepage/x1775730622
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Weymouth: Traffic on TV
by Johanna Seitz
Boston Globe (MA)
03/16/08

Mayor Susan Kay is taking on traffic in her next televised public affairs broadcast, which will air next month on local cable WETC, Channel 11. “The town is almost at gridlock,” Kay said. “We have incredible traffic issues that we need to address – Weymouth Landing, Route 3A, everywhere.” She said she plans to invite representatives from the community and the state Highway Department to participate in the program. “We will certainly know the issues and will develop a plan from there,” she said. Kay’s first program, on a state affordable-housing law that affects Weymouth, is running on cable this month. She plans to discuss the town’s finances and budget in May.
http://www.boston.com/news/local/articles/2008/03/16/override_for_trash/?page=5
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March 18 Information Forum on Impeachment at Studios of MCAM Manchester, NH
by Nancy White
Democracy for New Hampshire
03/16/08

[ comments invited ]

Brookline, NH – NH State Representative Betty Hall will be the featured panelist at the last in a series of informative forums centered on our Constitution. The forum entitled, “Defending Our Constitution: Let’s All Come Up For AIR—Accountability, Impeachment and Responsibility” will be carried live in the Manchester Community Access Media (MCAM) TV 23 studio in Manchester, 540 North Commercial Street at 7:30pm-9:30pm, Tuesday, March 18.

Joining Representative Hall will be John Kaminski, chairman for Maine Lawyers for Democracy; former US Senate candidate in 2006, Jean Hay Bright; current candidate for US Senate in Maine, Herbert Hoffman; Newfane, Vt. Selectman, Dan DeWalt; and US Congressman Dennis Kucinich via live connection.   —>
http://www.democracyfornewhampshire.com/node/view/5574
~

Inaugural – VideoCast March 10
by WPAA
OnTheParadeGround_Wallingford (CT)
03/09/08

[ comments invited ]

What better day to start a TV show about bringing sunshine to local topics of interest than the day after we loose an hour of sleep in preservation of daylight. On the Parade Ground is planned to be a forum for gathering knowledge about topics of public interest.  Callers will be encourage to share their knowledge, brainstorm ideas, and suggest if/then scenarios.The program will be facilitated by a resident of Wallingford. On the Parade Ground facilitator and crew will try to synthesize the topic in TV shorts that will run on WPAA’s Bulletin Board. The discussion will hopefully build on each other. One topic may lead to the another On the Parade Ground theme.   —>
http://ontheparadeground.blogspot.com/
~

looking for ideas to blog about?
by zen
blogAsheville (NC
03/15/08

[ 5 comments ]

We just had a wonderful 2nd meeting of Asheville Community Media and there will be interesting things to post, but for now, we’d like to promote a little cross-posting.

Who reads blogs? Mostly bloggers. Who watches URTV? Mostly TV gear heads. We’d like to get some crossover, some swapped thinking to get people looking at the wider range of Asheville media. If you blog and there’s a WPVM radio show you’ve heard that interests you, blog about it. If you have a URTV show that deals with local ideas, promote a blog that you read or give some support to a WPVM radio broadcast. The idea has always been to keep Ashevillians informed of the local goings on, and we are blessed with many forms of media. Many locals read the Mountain Xpress and the AC-T and feel informed or entertained. But the idea here is to cross-pollinate between print and net and sound and vision to form a more complete community. One in which YOU have some input.   —>
http://blogasheville.blogspot.com/2008/03/looking-for-ideas-to-blog-about.html
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Sunshine week brings issues to light
Media studies of open government help expose community problems
by Cara O’Brien
The Reporter-Herald (CO)
03/16/08

[ comments invited ]

“A popular government, without popular information, or the means of acquiring it, is but a prologue to a farce or a tragedy; or, perhaps, both.”  — President James Madison, Aug. 4, 1822

“Press releases tell us when federal agencies do something right, but the Freedom of Information Act lets us know when they do not.”  — Sen. Patrick Leahy, 1996

The federal Freedom of Information Act went into effect in 1967 after President Lyndon B. Johnson, begrudgingly, signed it.  The federal act, as well as myriad state sunshine laws, protect the right of access to government records.  The law, much-touted by journalists, is actually utilized 95 percent of the time by the public, for whom it is intended.  “The more transparent and open government activities are, the more confidence people have in their government,” said Ed Otte, executive director of the Colorado Press Association. “This is a public issue, not a press issue.”

The city of Loveland’s 28 official requests for information in 2007 — many requests are handled without formal paperwork — included just two from reporters.  Governments, law offices, organizations doing studies and citizens all made formal requests to the city over the course of the year.

The media can, however, bring issues to light in a way private citizens often do not.  A survey of stories originating with Freedom of Information Act requests from 2004 to 2007 included: a Minneapolis Star-Tribune story on high salmonella levels at a turkey-processing plant in Minnesota; a Ventura County Star report of at least a dozen women’s deaths related to the use of a birth control patch; a Washington Post story of noncompliance with Medicare at many hospitals; and the list goes on.   —>
http://www.reporterherald.com/news_story.asp?ID=15607
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Zimbabwe to screen foreign journalists covering polls
AFP
03/16/08

HARARE (AFP) — Zimbabwe plans to closely screen foreign media intending to cover upcoming elections amid suspicions uninvited observers and security personnel might impersonate Western journalists, state media reported Sunday.  Accreditation of some 300 foreign reporters who applied to cover the country’s March 29 general elections will be closely supervised, as the government was aware of “the machinations to turn journalists into observers,” George Charmba, information secretary, told the state-run Sunday Mail.

In particular, he said, the government feared “uninvited observers and security personnel from the Western countries,” might be applying to cover the vote as reporters, the weekly quoted Charamba as saying.  Preference would be given to reporters from Africa and the “national identity of the news organisations will be a major determinant,” he added.   —>
http://afp.google.com/article/ALeqM5hfYTgDTfz3xJ68h9OnOD34XjOasw
~

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

Community Media: Selected Clippings – 03/12/08

March 13, 2008

[blip.tv ?posts_id=741864&dest=-1]

YAC at KZSU
by Midpeninsula Community Media Center
Media Center YAC
03/11/08

[ comments allowed ]

The Youth Advisory Council goes to visit KZSU Stanford radio station. (34:25)
http://mediacenteryac.blogspot.com/2008/03/yac-at-kzsu.html
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No More School Board Meetings On Public Access Television?
by Steve Shuler
STEVE SHULER for Hillsborough County School Board District 5 (FL)
03/12/08

[ comments allowed ]

If Time Warner gets its way then you and I will no longer be granted our public access channels. In other words, our free speech will be stifled, eventhough, we, as a community, had given them monopoly access to our cable television market and our private land for their underground cables so, in turn, we would be allotted a number of channels for import things like School Board, City council, etc. But, they are doing their best to resolve themselves of this burden. —>
http://shulerforschoolboard.blogspot.com/2008/03/no-more-school-board-meetings-on-public.html#
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Ward 3 Update from Councilmember Teri Anulewicz
by Mason
SmyrnaBlog.com (GA)
03/12/08

—> ALL City Council meetings are open to the public, and if you are a Charter Cable customer, you can watch the meetings live on Charter public access channel 19. You can also stream the meetings on your computer when they are rebroadcast on TV 23, Cobb County’s public access cable channel. For information on meeting rebroadcast schedules, go to http://communications.cobbcountyga.gov/tv23/.
http://smyrnablog.com/?p=284
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Channel 17 to host media night on advertising
Burlington Free Press (VT)
03/12/08

“Advertising Inside Out, how we make up our minds,” is the subject of this month’s Media Education Night on Channel 17. The live, one-hour call-in talk show will be on March 26 at 6:30 p.m. These shows are interactive, topical discussions that provide thought on media consumption, production and experience. Attending the recording also allows the public to see behind the scenes of community media-making in the Channel 17 studio. Those who would like to volunteer to work on the series should contact morourke [at] cctv [dot] org. Groups and classes are welcome to attend.
http://www.burlingtonfreepress.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20080312/NEWS/80312005
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Conejo Valley Republican Women Watch: The Gameplan to Keep the White House
FullosseousFlap’s Dental Blog (CA)
03/12/08

[ comments allowed ]

Mike Stoker, an attorney whose practice emphasizes land use, government, and business law, and who is the volunteer Chairman of the John McCain Presidential Campaign in Santa Barbara County will be addressing the Conejo Valley Republican Women today. The topic of his speech: “The Gameplan to Keep the White House.”… The speech will be recorded by public access cable television if you cannot make the event today.
http://flapsblog.com/?p=6580
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PEGspace at Drupalcon 2008
by Colin Rhinesmith
Community Media in Transition (MA)
03/12/08

[ comments allowed ]

For those interested in learning more about the intersection of Public Access Television and free and open source software, Jason Daniels (medfield.tv) forwarded along a link to audio & meeting minutes from a gathering of public broadcasting and public access media folks during the recent Drupal conference held in Boston, this year. —>
http://cmediachange.net/blog/2008/03/12/pegspace-at-drupalcon-2008/
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Public ownership of broadband access is best
by Christopher Mitchell
Eureka Reporter (CA)
03/02/08

[ 2 comments ]

Too many cities in California are stuck with slow (or no) broadband access. As the United States continues to dip in international broadband rankings, individual communities have a choice: build their own broadband network or hope someone else does it for them.

Broadband may be comparatively new, but these difficult questions of infrastructure have been with us for far longer. One hundred years ago, communities were told electricity was too complicated for municipal meddling and they should wait for private companies to electrify them. Thousands of communities realized that a community cannot wait for essential infrastructure. They accepted responsibility for their future and wired their towns. How little has changed since then.

California’s Broadband Task Force has released its final report, complete with maps showing some 2,000 communities without any access at all. Many more communities are underserved, offered an always-on connection faster than dial-up, but not by much. The Broadband Task Force recognizes the importance of universal broadband access in California. Broadband has already had an impact on education, economic development, public safety and entertainment. It may well revolutionize health care, especially in rural areas.

Unfortunately, the Broadband Task Force has chosen the seductive path of dependence on private providers for these networks. Public ownership is a better plan. Broadband networks are here for the long haul, and our dependence on them will only increase. Many citywide wireless networks are privately owned, depending on city government as an anchor tenant. The network requires city money without offering the city any control. Under such circumstances, owning beats renting.

The Broadband Task Force clearly views public ownership as a last resort, allowing community services districts to offer broadband only when a private provider refuses. Once the CSD has taken the risk and built a functioning network, it must sell it to an interested private provider.

Public ownership should not be a fallback option. Digital Rio Dell, a collaboration with the local community media provider Access Humboldt and the city of Rio Dell, has shown the power of a community-led alternative. —>
http://eurekareporter.com/article/080302-public-ownership-of-broadband-access-is-best
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[ Here’s a good, lengthy cover story on Philadelphia’s Media Mobilizing Project. – rm ]

The Revolution Will Be Digitized
The Media Mobilizing Project works to bring grassroots organization into the 21st century.
by Doron Taussig
Philadelphia City Paper (PA)
03/11/08

[ comments allowed ]

A cab driver, a janitor, a maintenance man, a nurse and several other mostly blue-collar workers are seated around a square of tables. The room they’re in is a converted truck garage — one of the walls is just an enormous door — and the neighborhood is Brewerytown, a pocket at the edge of lower North Philly where the contrast between the developing city (in the form of new Westrum townhouses) and the decrepit city (the shells of old row homes) has reached almost caricatural proportions. It’s Sunday. They’ve come here to learn how to make a documentary.

In the arbitrary front of the makeshift classroom, three young white women guide a discussion. “What stories do we hear in the media?” they ask. The class answers: politics, celebrities, new development, crime, sports, drugs (there’s a long tangent about Barry Bonds). Then the teachers ask what stories the students would like to tell. “Unsafe schools,” says the maintenance man. “Murders and robberies of cab drivers,” says the cabbie. “The impact of language as a barrier,” a health-center worker from Haiti chimes in. “Job competition from immigrants,” offers the janitor.

Just outside the classroom door, next to a loud, on-its-last-legs coffeemaker, a satisfied-looking man named Todd Wolfson stands, discoursing about the rationale behind a class likes this. He talks about “Ford-ism,” and how there was a time when workers used the physical proximity of the factory to organize into collective bargaining units. That doesn’t work as well in a service economy — cabbies, for instance, are rarely all in one place at one time. But, Wolfson points out, there are other ways for workers to talk to each other. “New media also organizes, because it’s a decentralized communications form,” he says.

Wolfson, 35, is of average build, with long hair and a beard that combine to form a kind of mane. A middle-class white guy with hard-left politics, he once spent three years living in Namibia and Kenya before deciding he “didn’t want to be a white male anthropologist who studies in Africa.” He came to Philly to pursue a Ph.D. at Penn, chose as his dissertation subject the Philadelphia Independent Media Center (IMC), and became preoccupied with the role of communications in organizing. In 2006, he joined with four other local activists to found the Media Mobilizing Project (MMP), an organization that seeks to bring 21st-century media technologies to the grassroots. —>
http://www.citypaper.net/articles/2008/03/13/the-revolution-will-be-digitized
~

compiled by Rob McCausland
Alliance for Community Media
2020-393-2650
web: http://ourchannels.org
wiki: http://peg.ourchannels.org

Community Media: Selected Clippings – 03/05/08

March 9, 2008

Public access may be hard to access on U-verse
by George Moore
MyRecordJournal.com (CT)
03/05/08

[ comments allowed ]

WALLINGFORD – The ability to find public access shows while channel surfing will play a central role in a struggle between public access advocates and AT&T’s new television service, U-verse.  U-verse will group all of the state’s community access channels under one U-verse channel, channel 99. After selecting 99, viewers could choose their desired public access program from a menu.

Not offering public access on a regular “surfable” channel will be detrimental, said Scott A. Hanley, manager of Wallingford Government Access Television. He said many people like to flip quickly between public access and other channels.  “This would just be an added obstacle to try to bring people to view the channel,” he said.
http://www.myrecordjournal.com/site/tab1.cfm?newsid=19363828&BRD=2755&PAG=461&dept_id=592708&rfi=6
~

New take on an old lesson
by David Callender
The Capital Times (WI)
03/05/08

Adults of a certain age may recall the 1970s children’s TV series “Schoolhouse Rock” that set lessons in American history, civics and other topics to a catchy rock beat.  And, of all the episodes on the show, probably one of the best known was “Just a Bill,” featuring a talking piece of legislation that showed how a bill becomes a law.

Now with the help of Madison cartoonist Mike Konopacki and musician Peter Leidy, the reform-minded Wisconsin Democracy Campaign has turned the classic lesson into a more jaded look at contemporary politics called “Statehouse Crock.”  The video on the group’s Web site (www.wisdc.org/crock.php) shows how it sees special interests rigging the legislative process and keeping ordinary citizens like “Just Bill, I’m only Bill” from getting access to lawmakers.,,

Cable applications

In the wake of a new law deregulating the state’s cable TV industry, five cable firms have already filed applications to provide TV service to Wisconsin consumers.  And one of them — AT&T, which led the deregulation effort — has already had its application approved by the Department of Financial Institutions, the pro-deregulation group TV4US announced Tuesday.

The remaining applicants include other major industry players: Charter Communications, Comcast, Time Warner Cable and CenturyTel.  Advocates of deregulation argued that the bill would open the state up to more competition between cable providers. Under the old state law, cable providers had near-exclusive access to operate under franchise agreements with each community.

In a response to the group’s announcement, the Wisconsin Alliance of Cities said it is “imperative” that communities where the cable companies are seeking to locate contact the state and identify the terms of their old franchise agreements. The old agreements required cable companies to help pay for community programming — known as public, educational and government channels — in exchange for the right to operate.

“Failing to provide information on the number of PEG channels, PEG support and franchise fees to a video provider within 10 days of receiving notice of its application could lead to dire consequences: loss for months of community access and government channels and franchise fees,” the alliance warned.
http://www.madison.com/tct/news/275710
~

KREX Rising
by John Linko
John Linko (CO)
03/05/08

[ comments allowed ]

—>   The quarterly membership meeting of Grand Valley Peace and Justice is tonight at 7:00 PM at the St. Joseph Church offices at 3rd and White, across the street from the church. The group’s meeting announcement indicated a discussion on alternative media will be part of the agenda.  This will hopefully include the development of a working group with certain benchmarks to achieve, and one of those will hopefully be persuading the City of Grand Junction to request the activation of their PEG Access Channel on the basic cable tier, which is part of the City’s current franchise agreement with Bresnan.

The recent developments surrounding the partial resurrection of KREX, through cooperation between media outlets, the sharing of equipment and space, and the rapid deployment of alternative programming sources, displays very well the level of expertise and goal-oriented thinking present in our local media and educational institutions.

What’s to stop the development of a coalition of these groups and outlets to provide for the space, equipment, organization, and administration of a community public access channel in Grand Junction? The answer to this and many other questions may make themselves better known starting this evening. Such a resource is long overdue in our community, as there are successfully-run examples (http://www.dcat.tv/) of such stations in smaller cities and towns across the Western Slope.   —>
http://johnlinko.blogspot.com/2008/03/krex-rising.html
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Jackson examines its cable contract
by Fraidy Reiss
Asbury Park Press (NJ)
03/05/08

[ 2 comments ]

For four years now, Cablevision has done business in this town without a franchise agreement to regulate the company’s presence here.  Soon, that might change. The Township Council will hold a public hearing Tuesday evening at the municipal building on a proposed 15-year agreement it has reached with the cable company. If the council approves the deal, it will head to the state Board of Public Utilities for review.

The town has been negotiating with Cablevision on and off since the previous franchise licensing agreement expired in December 2003. A major sticking point was the town’s insistence that the cable provider keep its discount for low-income seniors at 25 percent off basic cable-television rates.  Under the proposed deal, the senior discount would remain at 25 percent. Additionally, Cablevision would give Jackson a $7,500 grant the first year of the agreement and $4,300 per year for the next 14 years, for the town to use for any cable- or telecommunications-related purpose.  The deal also calls for Cablevision to give Jackson its own public-access channel.

Councilman Scott Martin said he would like to see that channel in place by summer. It would be used to broadcast community calendars, school events and advertising for local not-for-profits, he said. “To get information out to the public about what’s going on in town,” he explained.  Children would be thrilled to see their school events on television, added Councilwoman Emily Ingram, who predicted the public-access channel would “bring the town together.”   —>
http://www.app.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20080309/NEWS01/803090345/1070/NEWS02
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Council happy cable pact is shorter
Five years is time for innovations
by Nick Kotsopoulos
Worcester Telegram & Gazette (MA)
03/05/08

[ 14 comments ]

City councilors last night applauded the new cable television deal the city has struck with Charter Communications, saying its shorter-than-usual term will benefit local consumers in the long run.  The councilors are betting that by the time the cable license renewal runs its course, technological advances in the cable field will reach the point in which additional companies may be interested in coming to Worcester to provide service.  They believe such competition would not only help lower cable rates, but also improve service and programming…

Traditionally, the city has had 10-year contracts with cable franchise holders. But city councilors had urged City Manager Michael V. O’Brien to limit the length of this license renewal to no more than five years because of the rapid, ongoing changes in cable technology and competition.   —>
http://www.telegram.com/article/20080305/NEWS/803050643/1101
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Net benefit
Cable pact charts course to fiber-optic forefront
Worcester Telegram & Gazette  (MA)
03/05/08

[ comments allowed ]

The most intriguing aspect of Worcester’s new five-year cable television contract is not what is in it but what is to be taken out.  For Charter Communications customers, the changes are apt to be largely invisible. The key elements are equipment upgrades for the public access, education and government channels and provisions to smooth the transition of the PEG channels to the digital tier over the next year.

In a radical departure, however, the city’s cable-based “institutional network,” owned and operated by Charter, will be phased out under the new contract. I-NET, the city’s communications link since 1993, was a technological leap forward in its day, but it now is inadequate for the city’s communications and business needs.

Replacing the I-NET will be a 20-mile fiber-optic loop linking about 100 municipal and school buildings. The cost of installing and operating the new network will be borne by a vendor to be selected through a bidding process. The vendor will recoup the cost by selling the vast excess capacity of the fiber-optic loop to public and private entities. Fees paid by the city for use of the network are to be offset by savings resulting from the phaseout of its existing infrastructure.

It would be only a slight exaggeration to say the change will be a revolution in municipal communications. The high-speed/high broadband network will transmit all forms of data, including e-mail and telephone links. It also will be available for security and energy-management monitoring, fire detection, wireless technology and more.   —>
http://www.telegram.com/article/20080305/NEWS/803050344/1020
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An urgent call: Give us broadband, Vermont towns say
by Daniel Barlow
The Barre Montpelier Times Argus (VT)
03/05/08

[ comments allowed ]

Vermont voters sent a clear message to the world of high-speed Internet Tuesday: We want in.  Voters in at least 19 towns approved non-binding resolutions to join in a regional effort to bring high-speed Internet via fiber-optic to their homes during town meetings held early this week and over the weekend.  In all on Tuesday, at least 13 towns approved the resolution to join the East Central Vermont Community Fiber Network and organizers of the effort anticipate a full sweep of the more than 20 towns that had the item on their agenda once all the results were in.   —>
http://www.timesargus.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20080305/NEWS02/803050363/1003/NEWS02
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A Conversation with Laurie from the Community Media Center
by Marie-Claire
Digital Inclusion in Grand Rapids, MI
03/05/08

[ comments allowed ]

On Thursday, I had a brief but interesting lunch conversation with Laurie from the Community Media Center here in Grand Rapids.  We first discussed some of the CMC programs in place for area nonprofits and residents, http://www.grcmc.org/nposervices and then talked about a new program coming out once the city gets its WiMax working. It’s in charge of eventually processing and granting up to 5% of the area’s residents discounted rates on WiMax. They have also taken the task of traveling to local schools and talking about the available WiMax discount to schools.

So there will be education about our new wireless access, and discounted rates from an organization in the city. I’m not meaning for that to sound small, I mean for it to sound like a step in the right direction.  I explained to Laurie about our project idea. I talked about the pilot program, the gaps in the system, and some other stuff we’re working on. She seemed genuinely excited. She all but volunteered a venue for the pilot program when I explained some of our current stumbling blocks.   —>
http://forgr.wordpress.com/2008/03/05/a-conversation-with-laurie-from-the-community-media-center/
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Community for Hope develops TV series
by Aldrich M. Tan
The Northwestern (WI)
03/05/08

[ comments allowed ]

Lisa McLaughlin said she’s always a little nervous before going on camera.  However, the topic of bullying prevention programs is an important and familiar topic for the South Park Middle School principal so it was very easy for her to talk.  McLaughlin’s interview will be part of a television series that Community for Hope of Oshkosh is producing with the help of Oshkosh Community Media Services. It is part of a six-part series that started airing last month and will feature area people addressing mental health issues and suicide, executive director Mary VanHaute said.   —>
http://www.thenorthwestern.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20080305/OSH/80305164/1987
~

Obama Speaks Part 6
The 411 Show (TX)
03/05/08

[ comments allowed ]

Obama makes his campaign stop in San Antonio Texas for the 2008 primary election. Part 6. This clip aired on San Antonio Public Access TV.
http://411show.blogspot.com/2008/03/obama-speaks-part-6_05.html
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Oregon Law Librarians (back) on TV: Topic: Family Law
by Laura Orr
Oregon Legal Research
03/05/08

[ comments allowed ]

On Thursday, February 28, 2008, from 8-9 p.m., the Clackamas County Law Librarian, and I, the Washington County Law Librarian, appeared again on “Legally Speaking” with the host of the show, attorney Jim Hilborn. The subject was family law. (We also sent some photos from this show into the AALL Day in the Life contest so stay tuned.)

Some of the legal information sites we talked about included: OJD Family Law website;  Legal Aid Services of Oregon; Oregon State Bar public information; Oregon Council of County Law Libraries (OCCLL) Directory.

Legally Speaking is a call-in cable public-access TV show that airs live on the 4th Thursday of each month, out of the TVCTV studios in Beaverton, Oregon and is rebroadcast at different times throughout the month on Portland metro-area cable access channels, Channel 11 or 23.   —>
http://oregonlegalresearch.blogspot.com/2008/03/oregon-law-librarians-back-on-tv-topic.html
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Video Jam to Air at Drake University, Iowa
by Tracy
WCCA TV (MA)
03/05/08

[ comments allowed ]

Video Jam, WCCA TV ‘s local originated music video show, created by Mauro DePasquale and hosted by Tracy Foley, has been asked to present their show on the Residence Life Channel 7 at Drake University in Des Moines, Iowa! Video Jam has produced over 500 shows since 1992 and it is seen not only in Massachusetts, but New Hampshire, California, North Dakota, and now Iowa!
http://www.wccatv.com/node/12100
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Stars Shine in Sunshine Week Print, Broadcast Public Service Ads
American Society of Newspaper Editors
The Earth Times
03/05/08

[ no comments ]

A series of broadcast and print public service ads featuring 13 actors, who are high-profile members of The Creative Coalition, speaking about the importance of open and accountable government has been produced for Sunshine Week, March 16-22, and can be used throughout the election season in conjunction with the Sunshine Campaign. The PSAs were developed by the Radio-Television News Directors Association and Foundation, and the American Society of Newspaper Editors, in cooperation with The Creative Coalition, with support from the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation.   —>
http://www.earthtimes.org/articles/show/stars-shine-in-sunshine-week-print-broadcast-public-service-ads,303943.shtml
~

AmericanTowns.com Offers Unprecedented Access to Local Information for Every Town in America
Network of “Community Webspaces” Provides a Better Way for People To Find and Share Local Content Online
Business Wire
03/05/08

AmericanTowns.com LLC today raised the bar in the hyperlocal space by launching a new version of AmericanTowns.com. This version, which features a new and unique “community webspace” for each town in America, lets local residents find and share an unprecedented combination of local information: community events, local news, train schedules, charitable organizations, local videos, farmers’ markets, jobs, real estate, privacy protection, “sales and savings,” local services and a host of online and previously offline community resources.   —>
http://www.businesswire.com/portal/site/google/?ndmViewId=news_view&newsId=20080305006021&newsLang=en
~

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

Community Media: Selected Clippings – 02/11/08

February 12, 2008

Hang-ups remain for Verizon in Northport
by Tim Healy
Newsday (NY)
02/11/08

[comments allowed]

Representatives from Verizon visited Northport Thursday night to update the Village Board on the company’s efforts to offer television service to residents.  Verizon has been installing a fiber optic network in the village and currently offers telephone and Internet service but has not reached an agreement with the village to complete the “triple play” with a television franchise.

Franchise talks between the utility and the village have made some progress, according to James Matthews, the village attorney, but sticking points remain. Village officials are concerned about the installation schedule and how long it will take for all residents to be offered the service. To date, the utility has said it would take no longer than five years to get to everyone, although it would try to do so sooner…

“I would not vote for the franchise until I see which properties are not going to receive service,” initially, trustee Henry Tobin to the Verizon representatives.  Also among the issues pending is the size of a grant that Verizon would pay to the village to cover the cost of public access, educational and government programming. Known as a PEG grant, Verizon has offered $5,000, but trustee Thomas Kehoe wants the utility to match an additional $25,000 over three years that Verizon gave to the village of Farmingdale in a franchise agreement there.   —>
http://www.newsday.com/news/local/suffolk/ny-linorth0211,0,4709521.story
~

Where PEG Fits In Squarely
by Kent Gibbons
Multichannel News
02/11/08

[comments allowed]

At a public hearing in New York City on Jan. 17, a man stood up and told city officials about a category of local programming that is cable-exclusive.  “You’re not going to find this on satellite,” the man said. “You’re going to find it on cable.”

The unusual thing was, the man doesn’t work for a cable company, or even one of those for-profit programmers that rely on cable distribution to earn their profits.  The man, Michael Knobbe, runs Bronxnet, the nonprofit organization that operates four public-access channels on Cablevision Systems, available to about 300,000 Bronx residents. The hearing was part of Cablevision’s renewal of an expired franchise in the borough…

Knobbe told me Bronxnet gets along well with Cablevision. There doesn’t seem to be any threat to its four channels, although he’d like more funding in order for equipment upgrades, such as getting more digital servers to replace older tape machines. The channel operates from a sub-basement in Lehman College, and a flood several months ago knocked out a studio (since reopened) and an editing suite.

Speakers at the public hearing pleaded for more staff at Bronxnet, whose model is to make professional productions and use them to train school kids and other volunteers in TV production. Some Bronxnet shows, including a documentary about the Hunts Point commercial area of the borough, have won local Emmys. Knobbe also would like money for satellite locations.  “You’d be surprised. People watch this channel,” Bronx attorney David P. Lesch, a frequent guest on Bronxnet talk show Open , told me before one such appearance. “My clients watch it.”   —>
http://www.multichannel.com/article/CA6530797.html?q=bronxnet
~

Students conserve to save the Earth
by Myrna Feare
Danvers Herald (MA)
02/11/08

[comments allowed]

High school students are becoming conscious of the environment and try to work toward saving the planet. One of the most popular venues for achieving their goal is through an environmental club. Jeff Gallo is the facilitator of the Danvers High School association….

Pamela Irwin, recycling coordinator for the town, said the kids do a great job.  “His students wrote and designed a flyer about storm-water protection, which they distribute to the neighborhood they’re doing the stenciling in,” Irwin said…

“The school is definitely encouraging increased recycling and community involvement,” Gallo said. “I think we’re moving in the right direction in that regard.”

Social studies teacher Jacquelyn White teaches a course in community service. This past semester, students did projects on recycling awareness and on nonprofits, creating videos for both, which will be seen on Danvers Community Access TV…

…For information on recycling in Danvers, watch the new DPW video featuring Pamela Irwin, recycling coordinator, on Danvers Community Access Television: Channel 9 or 22 —>
http://www.wickedlocal.com/danvers/homepage/x1224706807
~

SpankOut Day Events Planned in Grand Rapids
Media Mouse (MI)
02/11/08

[comments allowed]

April 30, 2008, will be Grand Rapids’ first “SpankOut Day”. Parents and caregivers are being asked to use any of the various approaches to effective, positive, and non-violent disciplinary practices during that day. There are many effective, non-hurtful approaches to child discipline and these techniques will be highlighted through several planned community events and on-going resources…. These events, all in Grand Rapids, are free and open to the public:

—>    * April 3, Thursday, 7pm, 1118 Wealthy SE: “IGE Talks” open discussion on spanking, aired on public access TV;

* April 16: SEE-TV show (on public access television): Panel discussion. “Peaceful Parenting, Peaceful World”. Panelists: Richa (moderator), peace activist; Rosalynn Bliss, child welfare worker and City Commissioner; Savator Selden-Johnson, Department of Human Services, and Sarah Scott-Brandt, artist and parent of a young child;   —>
http://www.mediamouse.org/features/021108spank.php
~

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

Community Media: Selected Clippings – 01/17/08

January 18, 2008

Rebecca Padula on the film, “Margaret’s Waltz”
by Jane Lindholm
Vermont Public Radio
01/17/08

During her lifetime, Margaret MacArthur was both a singer and a collector of songs.  For her work preserving oral traditions, she was designated a New England Living Art Treasure, and invited to sing at the Kennedy Center, and colloquially, she took on the name, “Vermont’s First Lady of Folk.”  In May, 2006, MacArthur died at age 78, in her home in Marlboro, after being diagnosed with a rare brain disease just a week earlier.

Now another Vermont folk musician is working to preserve MacArthur’s legacy.   Hinesburg resident Rebecca Padula has produced a 90-minute documentary called Margaret’s Waltz.  The film recently took top honors at the Northeast Alliance for Community Media’s Best Documentary. …and will be shown Friday evening in Burlington. She spoke with VPR’s Jane Lindholm about the film.   —>
http://www.vpr.net/news_detail/78986/
~

Post Punk Recipes: Now Playing: Vegan Soup
by Serge Lescouarnec
Serge the Concierge
01/17/08

–>   Rather than merely playing background music , Post Punk Kitchen intersperses its vegan cooking thrills with indie bands on their Public Access TV Shows.  They are taking a break from the Limelight but you can browse The Archive to see past productions…  As for mixing music and cooking  on TV, they are not the only ones as I illustrated in Cook and Groove with Neneh Cherry.    —>
http://www.sergetheconcierge.com/2008/01/post-punk-recip.html
~

Marital Bliss
Are the House speaker and his lobbyist wife teaming up for AT&T?
by Jeff Woods
Nashville Scene (TN)
01/17/08

Even the jaded denizens of the state Capitol are wrinkling their noses at House Speaker Jimmy Naifeh’s intervention in one of the legislature’s costliest business battles ever.  Hordes of lobbyists are cashing in on AT&T’s attempt to compete with cable TV companies in Tennessee—and so is Naifeh, assuming he derives benefit from his lobbyist wife Betty Anderson’s lucrative income.

Last year, with Anderson lobbying for the cable industry’s Tennessee Cable Telecommunications Association, Naifeh was cool to AT&T’s legislation, and it failed. This year, Anderson has switched sides, signing on as a consultant with AT&T, and suddenly—guess what?—Naifeh is springing into action, leading lengthy negotiations in the past month to hammer out a compromise that’s likely to favor his wife’s client.

The working relationship between Anderson, known as the state’s most powerful lobbyist, and Naifeh, the House speaker for 16 years, has long been controversial—critics say it amounts to legal bribery—but rarely has Betty’s influence over Jimmy seemed so obvious. Asked about the apparent conflict of interest, Naifeh casts himself as an unbiased mediator between cable companies and AT&T, which combined to spend nearly $11 million lobbying the bill last year alone.   —>
http://www.nashvillescene.com/Stories/News/Woods/2008/01/17/Marital_Bliss/
~

Bredesen may weigh in on fight over cable
Jackson Sun (TN)
01/17/08

Gov. Phil Bredesen says he may get involved in a contentious proposal to change cable permitting rules in Tennessee to encourage broadband access around the state.  Bredesen, a Democrat, stayed out of last year’s legislative fight over the measure that would create statewide franchising rules that would allow companies like AT&T Inc. to avoid having to seek hundreds of municipal permits as it enters the cable TV business.  The measure failed last year, but the speakers of both chambers expect this year’s effort to have a better chance of passage.   —>
http://www.jacksonsun.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20080117/NEWS01/80117021
~

Verizon arrival highlight of annual cable report
by Vincent Todaro
Sentinel (NJ)
01/17/08

EAST BRUNSWICK- The township is beginning to have access to Verizon’s fiber optic cable lines, a move that some residents hope will increase competition and keep cable TV prices in check.  Township Council President Catherine Diem recently gave an update on the cable television issue as it is playing out in East Brunswick. During a December council meeting, she said Verizon now serves slightly less than 10 percent of the township with the fiber optics technology. The company expects to have the entire community serviced within the next three to four years…

One drawback to Verizon’s system is that it does not yet provide residents with access to EBTV, the township’s cable access station, Diem said. EBTV has been advertising a bulletin board and public service announcements to alert residents of the fact that the channel is only available on Comcast.

Verizon is signing people up for cable service, Diemsaid, but it cannot provide the local cable access channel, which has resulted in some “confusion” among residents.  “As people sign up, they are expecting [EBTV],” she said.  According to Diem, Verizon would not comment or give an update on when the EBTV channel might become available.   —>
http://ebs.gmnews.com/news/2008/0117/Front_Page/026.html
~

City looks to expand television channel
by Nicole Young
Capital Online (MD)
01/17/08

To say that programming on the city’s public access channel is scant would be a compliment.  City spokesman Ray Weaver is hoping to breathe life into the boring channel, which up to now has consisted of little more than City Council meetings, religious bulletins, and artist Bob Ross painting happy, little trees more than a decade after his death.

After going on hiatus more than two years ago when the original television studio was shut down, city officials are working to revamp programming on the public access channel found on Comcast channel 99.  Mr. Weaver said he is working to expand the channel’s offerings to include live broadcasts of all public meetings as well as a weekly news program, a city police show and several new shows focusing on things like art in the city.

He also said he wants to answer the age-old question posed to governments time and time again – what do you actually do?  “We want more government-centered programming, more meetings and we want to get as many cameras out there as possible,” Mr. Weaver said. “Sometimes people think we’re not concerned or connected and we don’t care, but we want people to see what we do.”

And now, work is being done to outfit the second floor of the former city Department of Planning and Zoning office at 159 Duke of Gloucester St. with a full Comcast television studio for the broadcast of city programming.  The station is funded mainly by Comcast cable subscribers, as a small portion of their subscription charges go to the city for channel maintenance. The former studio was shut down in hopes of relocating, but was put off for other projects.  “We have an obligation to use our station,” said Mayor Ellen O. Moyer. “We can’t not do our programming so we’re moving forward.”

Since the hiatus, programming on the channel has been running on minimum, with City Council meetings every second and fourth Monday of the month; religious programming, and 30-minute City Hall shows featuring aldermen and department heads discussing the latest issues.  But city officials are hoping to expand to as many as 35 new programs for the station.   —>
http://www.hometownannapolis.com/cgi-bin/read/2008/01_17-23/TOP
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Verizon applying for cable franchise
by Charlie Breitrose
MetroWest Daily (MA)
01/15/08

NORTHBOROUGH – Town residents could have their pick of cable providers within the next several weeks after Verizon New England Inc. submitted an application to provide cable television, Internet and phone service to the town.  Verizon filed an application at the end of October, said Kathy Dalgliesh, director of Northborough Cable Access Television.   —>
http://www.wickedlocal.com/northborough/news/x254745309
~

BATV considers moving station to Brookline High School
by Neal Simpson (1 comment)
Brookline Tab (MA)
01/16/08

Brookline High students may soon have the chance to get a taste of Tinseltown without leaving the classroom.  The school district is considering whether to set up a pair of television studios in the school, where public access television producers could work side by side with students. The studios, which could open as early as fall 2009, would be modeled after similar programs in Watertown and Beverly.   —>
http://www.wickedlocal.com/brookline/news/education/x1295936911
~

Footage flap irks immigration critic
by John Hilliard
Metrowest Daily News (MA)
01/17/08

FRAMINGHAM –  A local opponent of illegal immigration said his civil rights were violated after his public access television show was pulled off the air by the town’s cable station last week.  “This is an abuse of power,” said Jim Rizoli, who leads a local anti-illegal immigration group and hosts a weekly TV show that targets illegal immigrants.

He said his show was cut short last Thursday and replaced mid-broadcast with another program because it included 20 minutes of footage shot by the town’s government cable channel. He said the town’s director of media services, Ron Rego, told Rizoli that footage was the town’s copyrighted material and could not be used for his own show.   —>
http://www.metrowestdailynews.com/news/x1613095207
~

Why AT&T’s Copyright Filter Could Suck For Everyone — Including AT&T
by Dan Frommer
Silicon Valley Insider
01/16/08

If AT&T installs a copyright filter on its broadband network, will it shoot itself in the foot?  Last week at CES, reps from NBC, Microsoft, and AT&T discussed whether Internet service providers should take a leading role in filtering out pirated, copyrighted content from subscribers’ broadband connections. “What we are already doing to address piracy hasn’t been working,” said AT&T exec James Cicconi, according to the NY Times.

Why would AT&T offer such a service? It could conceivably charge studios for the filter. It might convince itself that it has a vested interest in stopping piracy because it is now a content provider, via its “U-Verse” TV service. And if AT&T frees up enough of its pipes — pirated video uses up a ton of bandwidth — the filter could even cut network capex.

But are any of those rationales worth the blowback? No way, Columbia Law prof Tim Wu writes in a Slate column .

Key questions: How would the filter know the difference between a legal download of copyrighted content and an illegal download of the same content? How will AT&T offer customer service for the filter? If your download gets stopped, do you have to sit on hold with a rep to sort things out? The first time that happened, we’d cancel our DSL subscription.   —>
http://www.alleyinsider.com/2008/01/why-atts-copyright-filter-could-suck-for-everyone-including-att.html
~

Berkeley Center for New Media gets endowed professorship
by Heidi Benson
San Francisco Chronicle (CA)
01/17/08

UC Berkeley is announcing Thursday the establishment of the first endowed professorship in the 5-year-old Berkeley Center for New Media.  The $3.1 million endowment was seeded by a $1.6 million gift from the Craigslist Foundation, the nonprofit branch of the popular community networking hub founded by San Francisco resident Craig Newmark.  The additional funds will come from a landmark $113 million gift from the William and Flora Hewlett Foundation, intended to create 100 endowed chairs at the university.

“It’s a good match,” said engineering Professor Ken Goldberg, who was appointed director of the Center for New Media in July.  “Our mission is to advance new media in the public interest, and to explore the effect of new media on culture,” said Goldberg. “In terms of innovation and public service, Craigslist is one of the companies we admire most.”   —>
http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/c/a/2008/01/17/MN19UGDJ1.DTL
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Craigslist to establish first endowed faculty chair in new media
by Marie Felde
UC Berkeley News (CA)
01/17/08

The University of California, Berkeley, today announced plans to establish the first endowed faculty chair at the Berkeley Center for New Media with a donation of $1.6 million from craigslist, one of the most popular Web sites in the world.

The donation, which will support research, symposia and lectures, will be matched with $1.5 million from the William and Flora Hewlett Foundation for a total of $3.1 million. The matching funds come from the foundation’s landmark challenge grant, announced last September, that it gave to UC Berkeley to create 100 new endowed chairs. The new chairs are designed to help the public research university compete with private institutions.

UC Berkeley Chancellor Robert J. Birgeneau said the craigslist donation recognizes the Berkeley Center for New Media as a major research center where scholars and students “explore the powerful effect of new media on culture and think rigorously about how new media will continue to change our lives and perceptions.”   —>
http://www.berkeley.edu/news/media/releases/2008/01/17_craigslist.shtml
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LiveBlogging NYMIEG Breakfast – Wireless, Wimax and future of communications
by Howard Greenstein
Random Thoughts from Howard Gr
01/17/08

Breakfast – Wireless and Wifi and The future of communications. Sree starts the panel with nice overview.  Laura – research on wifi use- Cities and public spaces and homes are rapidly being overlaid with a wireless ‘blanket’ of wifi, rfid, Bluetooth, etc. Ubiquity- anytime, anywhere as a tag line. “Freedom is the purpose.” Research indicates that Location and context is most important, not ‘freedom”.

Wifi is a factor in attracting people to go to places – like Bryant Park or Starbucks. Searching for info relevant to their geographic location is a major activity. Mobile entrepreneurs who need to get out of their homes, and spend up to 12 hours a day at wifi locations. Starbucks, Bryant Park, NYPub Libe, and indie cafes.

Skews male (65%), higher income, early adopters. Locations have constituencies. Splash pages that are intro to wireless points are very important places to adv, pass on info.   —>
http://howardgreenstein.com/blog/archives/2008/01/liveblogging_nymieg_breakfast_-_wireless_wimax_and_future_of_communications.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 – 10/24/07

October 24, 2007

Antigone at Media Democracy Fair on Friday! (Vancouver, BC)
by Amanda Reaume
Antigone Magazine
10/24/07

—>   Media Democracy Fair:  Come to the FREE Media Democracy Fair and meet representatives from your favorite local independent media outlets. 4:30pm – 7pm Friday October 26th at the Concourse in SFU Vancouver (Harbour Centre) 515 West Hastings Street.
http://antigonemagazine.blogspot.com/2007/10/antigone-at-media-democracy-fair-on.html
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Symposium: NYC – 11/2
Free speech and privacy challenges on muni networks
by Carol Ellison
MuniWireless.com
10/24/07

What are the unique legal questions for municipal wireless networks in regards to privacy and First Amendment rights? New York University’s Journal of Legislation and Public Policy will explore that question at a November 2 symposium in New York City.  The symposium features two panel sessions:
* Challenges to Operating a Municipal Network, which will examine the various legal and fiscal structures of muni networks, including costs, benefits, and models for oversight and accountability.
* Civil Liberties on a Government-owned Network, which will examine the differences in the Constitutional requirements regarding privacy and first amendment rights for muni and private networks.

The symposium is open to the public. It will be held 1:00 – 4:15 p.m., in the Greenberg Lounge, Vanderbilt Hall, at the New York University School of Law, 40 Washington Square South. A photo I.D. is required for admission.
http://www.muniwireless.com/article/articleview/6565/1/23
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Comcast shooting itself in the foot with traffic shaping “explanations”
by Eric Bangeman
Ars Technica
10/23/07

As the evidence that Comcast is doing something untoward with BitTorrent and other traffic on its network has mounted, the cable company has tried clumsily to fend off accusations of wrongdoing. The latest developments come in the wake of several conference calls held by the ISP in which it attempted to make a case for its practice of sending forged TCP reset packets to interfere with some P2P traffic.

Timothy B. Lee, who is a regular contributor to the Tech Liberation Front blog as well Ars Technica, was invited to sit in on one of yesterday’s conference calls, along with folks from a handful of think tanks. According to Tim, the Comcast engineer on the call said that the Lotus Notes problems were a known side effect of Comcast’s traffic shaping practices, one the company was trying to fix. The engineer also “seemed to implicitly” concede that the accounts about the forged packet resets were accurate.   —>
http://arstechnica.com/news.ars/post/20071023-comcast-shooting-itself-in-the-foot-with-traffic-shaping-explanations.html
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Channel 61 says without $13,000, dark days ahead
by Stacy Brown
Times-Tribune (PA)
10/24/07

Public Access Channel 61 will lay off its only two paid employees Friday and will go dark by Monday if it does not raise $13,000, Lou Danzico, president of Scranton Today, told Scranton City Council on Tuesday.  Scranton Today is the operator of the public access channel.  “As of this moment, we need $13,000 to get through the rest of this year,” Mr. Danzico told the panel in a pre-meeting caucus. “We have two paid employees who will have to be laid off Friday, and we will go off the air by Monday, if this isn’t done,” he said.

Each of the five-member council vowed to try to find ways to aid Channel 61 and pledged to look at the city’s operating budget in an attempt to find funds.  “I urge my colleagues on council who has the ear of the mayor to speak to him,” Council finance chairwoman Janet Evans said.  Despite voting unanimously earlier this year to give $25,000 to Channel 61 to help keep it operating, council members later reneged on that promise, saying the city just does not have the money.  “I don’t know where we’re going to get the money from. At the time of the vote, I thought we had the money,” Councilman Bill Courtright said.   —>
http://www.thetimes-tribune.com/site/news.cfm?newsid=18949387&BRD=2185&PAG=461&dept_id=415898&rfi=6
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Public access plan riles them in Hernando
St. Petersburg Times (FL)
10/24/07

BROOKSVILLE — Hernando County commissioners Tuesday joined the chorus of other central Florida officials who are considering legal action to keep local government and educational programming on basic cable television.  Bright House Networks over the summer notified Hernando County and other governmental entities in their service area that on Dec. 11, public access, governmental and educational channels would be moved to the basic digital tier of the network.   —>
http://www.sptimes.com/2007/10/24/Hernando/County_joins_cable_ch.shtml
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Weston Wins Case Against Cablevision
by Don Casciato
Westport News (CT)
10/24/04

The Connecticut Department of Public Utility (DPUC) last week announced a ruling that Cablevision does not have the right to restrict local access television producers from offering their programs to other cable and video distributors.  The Town of Weston had challenged Cablevision’s claim that it could prohibit producers from making their productions available to other cable or video providers.

“I am thrilled that Weston was able to play a leading role in making this happen, and I thank the DPUC for their careful consideration of our concerns,” said Weston First Selectman Woody Bliss in a statement.  “The department’s ruling will have a significant impact well beyond Weston. We have established the right of people all over Connecticut to make the community access programs they produce available to more than just local Cablevision subscribers.”   —>
http://www.westport-news.com/ci_7268206
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Blumenthal Shifts Stance On AT&T TV Service
Phone Giant Should Be Allowed To Resume Marketing U-Verse, Attorney General Says
by Mark Peters
Hartford Courant (CT)
10/24/07

After winning a months-long battle that ended with a prohibition against AT&T’s signing up new customers for its TV service, Attorney General Richard Blumenthal on Tuesday said the phone giant should be allowed to resume marketing the service.  Blumenthal reversed his stance against allowing AT&T to sign up new customers for what he called an illegal cable service amid growing political support for the state’s largest phone company.   —>
http://www.courant.com/business/hc-att1024.artoct24,0,6451202.story
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Rell, others come out in support of AT&T’s U-verse
by David Krechevsky
Republican-American (CT)
10/23/07

As a Superior Court judge in Hartford prepares to convene a hearing Friday in the battle over AT&T’s U-verse, the television service got a strong showing of support Tuesday.  Gov. M. Jodi Rell issued a statement urging state regulators to reverse their decision earlier this month to force AT&T to seek a cable TV franchise for the service. Meanwhile, the chairmen of the legislature’s Energy and Technology Committee announced plans to hold a news conference today in support of U-verse and to explain the intent of the state’s new video franchising law, which took effect Oct. 1.   —>
http://www.rep-am.com/articles/2007/10/23/business/291914.txt
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Blumenthal changes mind about U-verse
by Brian Lockhart
Stamford Advocate (CT)
10/24/07

In another twist in the legal battle over U-verse, AT&T’s new fiber-optic television service, the state attorney general yesterday reversed his earlier opposition to the company signing up subscribers while its operating license remains in limbo….

Attorney General Richard Blumenthal had last week hailed DPUC’s decision. But yesterday, fearing the legal battle over U-verse could stretch on for at least a year, Blumenthal wrote to AT&T, saying he was asking the DPUC to grant the company a stay while the court proceedings play out.  “We all agree that consumers should have access to U-verse – as many as possible, as soon as possible,” Blumenthal wrote. “If the stay is approved by the DPUC, AT&T may proceed to install and market new service while it contests the federal court’s conclusion that U-verse service is cable. . . . I hope that AT&T will support our motion.”   —>
http://www.stamfordadvocate.com/news/local/scn-sa-att5oct24,0,841594.story?coll=stam-news-local-headlines
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State Representatives to Hear from Public on Superferry
KHNL (HI)
10/23/07

HONOLULU – Members of the state House will hear public testimony on the Hawaii Superferry on Thursday.  The hearing will be cablecast live on Olelo, public access television, Channel 54.   —>
http://www.khnl.com/Global/story.asp?S=7255924
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North Carolina neighborhood homeowners voice concerns over contamination at nearby site
by Jay Gaines
Contaminated Nation
10/24/07

Residents living near the former CTS of Asheville plant are increasing their efforts to get the contaminated site on Mills Gap Road cleaned up.  Homeowners plan to appear on a community access television show tonight to voice concerns over contamination at the site, and they plan to meet with a lawyer Wednesday night to assess their legal options. They also are forming a nonprofit organization to help residents affected by the pollution.   —>
http://contaminatednation.blogspot.com/2007/10/north-carolina-neighborhood-homeowners.html
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Watch ’em on TV
Bristol News (CT)
10/22/07

Nutmeg Television is airing the Federal Hill Association political forums from earlier this month, where the mayoral and City Council candidates addressed the issues raised by both the FHA and residents.   —>
http://bristolnews.blogspot.com/2007/10/watch-em-on-tv.html
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Channel surfing
Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (PA)
10/24/07

Public access station PCTV/Channel 21 is hosting a live mayoral debate 7 to 9 p.m. Saturday, with host Bruce Krane, producer of “Counting Controversy.”
http://www.post-gazette.com/pg/07297/827795-42.stm
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Website Recommendation: The School Wars
by ChristineMM
The Thinking Mother
10/24/07

Ned Vare and Luz Shoshie are a married couple who live in Connecticut. They unschooled their only child until he was admitted to college.  They have a website “The School Wars” which has a lot of articles written by Ned, which have been published in their local newspaper. The articles are about the problems with public schools and schooling in general and some have pro-homeschooling components. Additionally they produce cable access television shows about problems with schooling.   —>
http://thethinkingmother.blogspot.com/2007/10/website-recommendation-school-wars.html
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TV Program – Photographers of Northern Virginia for November
Northern Virginia Photographic Society

The TV series, Photographers of Northern Virginia, features outstanding  amateur and professional photographers displaying their images and providing  useful commentary about photographic techniques and equipment. Guests are primarily, but not exclusively, members of the clubs that make up the Northern Virginia Alliance of Camera Clubs (NVACC). The series is intended for both experienced and aspiring photographers, as well as for everyone else who enjoys viewing interesting and beautiful photographs.

Repeat programs of Photographers of Northern Virginia are now being shown on  a regular basis on Fairfax Public Access Channel 30 every Monday at 3:30 p.m. and every Friday at 3 p.m. They will no longer be shown on Channel 10.
http://nvps.org/main/upcoming/tv_program_photographers_of_no/
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Students can keep eye on legislators
by Katie Thibault
Badger Herald (WI)
10/24/07

WisconsinEye, a public broadcasting network that provides live coverage of legislative processes and state Supreme Court proceedings, was added to the statewide BadgerNet system last week.  BadgerNet provides data and video services throughout the state of Wisconsin and offers schools access to public programming.  “The state video network serves a number of campuses statewide,” said Chris Long, President and CEO of WisconsinEye.

Previously, WisconsinEye had been distributed only through digital cable by Time Warner and Charter to paying customers. The expansion of WisconsinEye to BadgerNet gives free access to some University of Wisconsin campuses — not including Madison — and public schools, Long said.  The partnership with BadgerNet will bring WisconsinEye to more than 255 schools and 54 college campuses across the state, according to WisconsinEye’s news release.   —>
http://badgerherald.com/news/2007/10/24/students_can_keep_ey.php
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Giants of Citizen Media Meet Up
Oh Yeon Ho and Jimmy Wales.
Founders of OhMyNews, Wikipedia compare visions.
by Cynthia Yoo
TheTyee.ca
10/24/07

Oh Yeon Ho of OhmyNews and Jimmy Wales of Wikipedia created two distinct, highly influential media vehicles intended to unlock the collective wisdom of everyone online. Earlier this month, in Berkeley, California, these two met and discussed their latest projects and critical issues facing citizen media. We’ll let you listen in, but first a bit of background on Oh and Wales and their pioneering sites.   —>
http://thetyee.ca/Mediacheck/2007/10/24/WikiVOhMyNews/
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compiled by Rob McCausland
Alliance for Community Media
202-393-2650
web: http://ourchannels.org
wiki: http://peg.ourchannels.org