Amy Goodman opens the People's Summit, Seattle

Democracy Now! host Amy Goodman spoke at Seattle's Town Hall on Nov. 29, 2009, in an event launching Global Justice Forward: A People's Summit--a multisector activist summit marking the tenth anniversary of the Seattle WTO.

Amy Goodman was introduced by Denis Moynihan (Democracy Now!). With MC Jill Freidberg (KBCS) and brief comments from Northwest Media Action Grassroots Network (MAG-Net) representatives Jonathan Lawson (Reclaim the Media), Rahwa Habte (Hidmo) and Marissa Chavez (Youth Media Institute).

Listen now (m3u stream) or download complete audio (mp3), recorded by Yuko Kodama

Watch video (wmv) recorded by Ed Mays/Pirate Television

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WTO media flashback: police snow job blankets media

From the Blind Spot, December 1999: As soon as police forces began shooting, beating, and gassing WTO protesters on November 30, spokespeople for the city began issuing statements to clear the police of all responsibility for their actions. These statements, often employing military jargon, fell roughly into two categories: (1) the misrepresentation and criminalization of nonviolent protests, and (2) the denial that police used excessive force against peaceful protesters.

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WTO media flashback: Ralph Nader and Errol Maitland

Ralph Nader, quoted in the Blind Spot, 3 Dec 1999: "You can see a lot of things happening, but they're not going to happen by thinking that the technology itself will have its own imperative toward democracy. It won't. Again and again … the technology offered the options to open up the system, have a democratic communication process and they were closed down by concentrated corporate power and its influence over our government..."

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WTO media flashback: Seattle TV: Official Media?

From the Blind Spot, 29 Nov 1999: KOMO News has announced a policy of covering only those WTO-related events carrying an official seal of approval from the city government. In an official announcement, the station's news director told viewers that the station was "taking a stand on not giving some protest groups the publicity they want."

One person whose action will likely lose coverage due to this policy is Mario Santos, of the Karapatan Filipino Center for Human Rights. Santos traveled here to take part in the International People's Assembly. "It's significant that the corporate mass communications won't cover our activity," says Santos. "They're losing out on what organized groups, communities of color, and international delegations have come for."

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The Blind Spot: Indymedia's grassroots daily coverage of the Seattle WTO

In Nov. 1999, grassroots journalists, anti-globalization organizers and international tech activists launched a bold experiment: a grassroots media effort to cover the World Trade Organization ministerial in Seattle, and the protests that would shut it down.

This week, Reclaim the Media will be celebrating Indymedia's tenth anniversary by republishing several key media pieces from Indymedia's beginnings, covering the WTO ministerial in Seattle, and the epochal protests that succeeded in shutting the meetings down. Read more for links to the Blind Spot, Indymedia's printed newsletter covering the events of the Seattle WTO.

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Global Justice Forward! 1999-2009 People's Summit

People's Summit: Nov 27-29, Seattle. An evening with Amy Goodman kicks off a weekend of workshops, strategizing and plenary discussions on global justice.

Nov. 30 will mark ten years since the World Trade Organization met in Seattle, amidst the epoch-making street protests that shut it down and focused the eyes of the world on the massive injustice of corporate globalization and "free trade" policies. Ten years later, the WTO is still at it; on the 30th itself the organization is hosting a "restart" meeting in Geneva--one week before the UN launches a climate change conference in Copenhagen. These are uncertain times and much remains at stake.

Help commemorate Seattle+10 at the People's Summit, dedicated to re-engaging in grassroots organizing for economic justice, human rights, peace, and environmental sustainability. Help reclaim and amplify our voices with a shared vision for a healthy planet and people. Let’s harness the spirit of the 1999 WTO protests in Seattle with a renewed commitment to move global justice forward!

Events start Friday, Nov 27 with Amy Goodman (a benefit for KBCS co-presented by Reclaim the Media), followed by two days of plenaries, workshops and a cross-sector strategy session, held at Seattle University, New Hope Baptist Church and Town Hall. Visit for a full list of speakers, plenaries, and workshops!

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Mad Hater Dobbs quits CNN

Controversial CNN host Lou Dobbs is quitting the network, he announced today. Dobbs and CNN had come under increasing criticism from media activists across the country offended by Dobbs' record of deceptive, anti-immigrant broadcasts. Organizers of the Basta Dobbs campaign–-a national Latino-led coalition quickly claimed victory. "Our contention all along was that Lou Dobbs – who has a long record of spreading lies and conspiracy theories about immigrants and Latinos – does not belong on the ‘Most Trusted Name in News,’" said's Roberto Lovato.

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Broadband Stimulus Watch: Thinktank : Broadband Stimulus Amount Woefully Inadequate

As broadband stimulus funds are beginning to be evaluated and distributed to initial grant winners, a report published by the communications think tank group Yankee Group is claiming that the $7.5 Billion allocated by be not nearly enough to elevate the country to the up echelon of broadband density.

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Local civil rights groups speak up for net neutrality

Forty local groups that represent people of color, low-income consituences and other historically marginalized communities sent a letter to FCC Chairman Julius Genachowski on October 21, 2009, urging the Chairman to remain firm in his support for network neutrality rules. Network neutrality rules, often called "the first amendement of the Internet," would prohibit Internet Service Providers (ISPs) from discriminating content on the Internet.

Garlin Gilchrist recently made a civil rights case for Net Neutrality, as did Mark Lloyd and Joe Torres here.

Read more for the text of this week's letter, which is also available as a PDF here.

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Public interest groups criticize anti-Net Neutrality letter from "Blue Bell" House Dems

Reclaim the Media joined nearly two dozen public interest organizations from more than twelve states urged Congress to support the net neutrality proceeding at the Federal Communications Commission.

Our letter to key House members expressed disappointment with an earlier Congressional letter, signed by Washington Representative Rick Larsen (D-WA 2) and other members of Congress from their states, that expressing a lack of support for net neutrality rules at the FCC. Other Washington Representatives, including Jay Inslee (D-WA 1) and Dave Reichert (R-WA 8) have expressed support for Net Neutrality.

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The media's job is to interest the public in the public interest. -John Dewey