by Mike Masnick

Filed Under:
journalism, media, michael copps, newspapers


FCC Considers Propping Up Old School Journalism, As Copps Blames The Internet And Bloggers

from the say-what-now? dept

Citizen Media Law alerts us to a rather troubling "state of the media journalism" report issued by FCC commissioner Michael Copps. While the report doesn't really mean anything right now, it's seen as an indicator of where the FCC may go in its rule-making process. And if that's the case, it's quite troubling, though the old school newspaper folks screaming for protection may find it comforting. Basically, it focuses on "the decline of traditional print and broadcast outlets" and seems to blame the combination of "the internet and bloggers" with the deregulation of media ownership.

This makes almost no sense, and is, in fact, contradictory. The rise of "the internet and bloggers" has massively increased the diversity of people involved in reporting and distributing the news. The barriers of entry to being a journalist have been lowered to almost nothing at all, and people have flooded the market. Copps views that as a problem, but apparently doesn't note the total contradiction in then immediately lamenting the decrease in diversity of journalists in traditional media jobs:
"We're not only losing journalists, we may be losing journalism," he said. "Some blame the Internet and bloggers, and that's certainly a part of the story. All that consolidation and mindless deregulation, rather than reviving the news business, condemned us to less real news, less serious political coverage, less diversity of opinion, less minority and female ownership, less investigative journalism and fewer jobs for journalists."
What's really troubling is that he seems to think this is a problem that the FCC needs to fix. This certainly seems to go well beyond the FCC's mandate, and it takes an impressive amount of conceptual blindness not to see that the solution is exactly what he described was a part of the problem.

Reader Comments

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  1. identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 16 Jul 2009 @ 3:34pm

    Hmm... real news? Let's check some headlines on the site of one of my country's national papers...

    "Peter Andre: Public Marriage was 'a mistake'"

    "Bumpy the Vampire Slayer: Sarah Michelle Gellar shows off her baby belly."

    "Chris Tarrant's (c-list UK celebrity) ex-wife in two-mile police chase after she was 'abrupt and rude' to police officer"

    "Police officers who practice witchcraft to get their own religious holidays"

    If this is what passes as "real" journalism, bring on the blog era.

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