MAG-Net ten-point platform for media justice

Media Action Grassroots Network:

» Representative and Accountable Content.

Free speech is eroded when one powerful group of voices dominates the media. Racist, sexist and homophobic diatribes broadcast over the public airwaves are hate crimes perpetrated against entire communities. Media must provide fair representation and offer opportunities for all people to participate.

» True Universal Media Access: Full, Fast, and Free for All.

In today’s modern technology environment, access to high-quality communications should not be dependent upon geography or demographics. Public-supported infrastructure should be expanded, and private networks must be held to broad and strong public-interest standards.

» Public Airwaves - Public Ownership.

It’s time to bust the corporate monopoly over our broadcast and cable networks. We need more public-supported media that are authentically accountable to local communities, and independent from both commercial and government
editorial pressures.

» Community-Centered Media Policy.

Media regulations should promote universal media access in the public interest, rather than protecting the economic interests of entrenched corporate media. License and franchise terms should be limited, and held accountable to effective local community oversight. New media diversity rules are needed to increase media ownership and participation among historically underrepresented communities, including people of color and women.

» Corporate Media Accountability and Just Enforcement of Media Rules.

Federal government regulators must have the resources and the will to effectively sanction media outlets and networks that violate the public interest and the public trust.

» Redefine and Redistribute First Amendment Rights.

The Universal Declaration of Human Rights makes clear that the right to communicate and gather diverse opinions through all media is fundamental and universal to all people. We should reframe our understanding of the First Amendment in this light, and hold all media and telecommunications policies to this high standard.

» Cultural Sovereignty and Self-Determination.

Copyright and intellectual property regulations should protect the rights of artists without enclosing new and collaborative forms of independent creative expression. Private media owners must not be allowed to abuse their power as cultural gatekeepers through payola or other schemes that hinder independent cultural development.

» Full and Fair Digital Inclusion.

Beyond Internet freedom and Net Neutrality, we need a digital communications policy framework that closes forever the digital divide, provides students with full access to new media technologies, and holds private telecommunications providers accountable to the evolving needs of diverse local communities.

» Another Media is Possible - If We Fund It.

We need more public funding to support alternative media infrastructure, independent media production and distribution. Philanthropic funding should prioritize regional and statewide organizing around media issues.

» Full and Fair Representation in the Movement for Media Reform.

Media reform, properly contextualized, is a strategy for achieving social and economic justice. Media justice values must obtain at the center of this movement, and activist leaders from traditionally underrepresented communities must be at its forefront.

article originally published at Media Action Grassroots Network.

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