Day of Rage Protest Continues in NYC: Media Mostly Bored or Biased
Media Blackout of Day of Rage Protests? American Autumn Continues with Media and Bloggers Bored or Biased
NEW YORK, NY - A day after Constitution Day in the United States, citizens continue to occupy a small section of New York City for peaceful protests and assemblies. Over the weekend so far, media outlets have either been very biased (Frontpage Mag) or very bored with the story. The New York Post had a short blurb saying a bunch of college kids and aging hippies were in New York to protest corporations or something.
Some bloggers have asked whether there is a media blackout of the event while others are asking if the media (being a corporation) is perhaps not too interested in giving it their "24-hour non-stop coverage" that usually happens - most recently with Hurricane Irene taking over the airwaves with non-stop news. Meanwhile, as the political talking heads talk on television, the protests in New York City are being broadcast LIVE, with Twitter and other social networks being used to spread information and news about the NYC protests against corporations and the banks.
Financial District, San Francisco © Steve Rhodes
Similar gatherings around the country took place on September 17, 2011. While these drew even smaller groups, there was a sense of unity across the Internet - tea party fanatics aside.
Following the updates on Twitter via the hashtag #usdor was tough to do at some points as hundreds of messages were passed back and forth every minute. Meanwhile, on Youtube and Flickr, more information was being released. On Saturday evening, more mainstream media began to do short print stories online, although there was no "breaking news" coverage.
A tweet on Twitter (unverified) said there was a call over the police radio for media to be taken off the streets. The problem with misinformation being spread via the social networks is one of the big reasons that a fair and unbiased media is so needed in America at this time of our history.
As Autumn approaches in America, it is time for the media to be reminded that they also work for the people. While news and rumors of celebrity troubles may bring increases in viewers and revenue, at some point there needs to be an effort to work with the citizens more closely.
The live stream on Sunday, September 18, 2011, shows a small group of people still holding assemblies in New York City. The scenes are fascinating to watch as history unfolds live on the Internet. With crucial matters at stake (jobs and the economy), it is more important than ever for mainstream corporate media (and bloggers as well) to take matters of national importance as seriously as other types of stories that are routinely covered - celebrity and entertainment - bread and circus. This leads to a vicious cycle of information droughts. Mayor Bloomberg recently warned about riots in NYC because of employment issues.
A way to gauge the coverage of this event is to use Google News. A quick search of the News tab in Google will show you a sparse amount of news compared to many other topics out there - including sports and celebrities. While the number of people in New York City participating may be small (at this point), the fact that people are doing this is somewhat newsworthy itself.
CBS, MSNBC are two mainstream sources that wrote something about the event while the rest are independent media or bloggers.
While 235 sources may seem like quite a bit for what some are calling a "non-event" when you compare the number with other topics, it is interesting to note that other topics are being covered quite a bit more. To be fair, corporate media giants have been experiencing financial difficulties since the advent of the Internet started to chip away at the monopoly on the media that had formed in this country and around the world because of prohibitive costs of printing.
After losing their high profit margins to Internet companies, they have been struggling since. Strangely, instead of big investments, many media corporations have seen swathes of layoffs in the last five to ten years. This at a time when the media - when true Journalists - are needed more than ever before.