Sunday, December 6, 2015

And you thought Murdoch was the devil......

What is the future of news? One writer argues that the centers of media power will shift from New York and Washington to Silicon Valley as a new generation of oligarchs arise. Oligarchs  who want to dominate journalism in ways Ted Turner and Rupert Murdoch could have only imagined.  Chris Morris writes in the Orange County Register:


The rising tech oligarchy, having disrupted everything from hotels and taxis to banking, music and travel, is also taking over the content side of the media business. In the process, we might see the future decline of traditional media, including both news and entertainment, and a huge shift in media power away from both Hollywood and New York and toward the Bay Area and Seattle.....

In the past, more hardware-oriented companies provided the “pipelines” through which traditional media disseminated their products. But increasingly these industries are being subsumed by the oligarchs. On the hardware side, they seek to supplant the traditional telecommunications companies with their own series of global digital pipelines; at the same time they are looking to gain control over large parts of the entertainment, news and other media providers.

The transformation of media to online platforms has already precipitated an enormous shift from traditional advertising – largely seen on television, in movies and print media – to Silicon Valley-based companies. By 2013, Google’s ad revenue surpassed that of either newspapers or magazines.....

To the new oligarchs, traditional media are holdovers from what one venture capitalist derisively called “the paper economy” that is destined to be swept away by the new digital aristocracy. As relatively young people – even Bill Gates is barely 60 – they will have the money, and the time, to disseminate their views both to the masses and the influential higher echelons.

One way to consolidate such influence – as happened with Gilded Age moguls like William Randolph Hearst – has been to buy up the former bastions of old media. Chris Hughes, a Facebook billionaire and Obama tech guru, has bought the venerable New Republic. Perhaps more importantly, the purchase of the Washington Post by Amazon’s Jeff Bezos, now the country’s fourth-richest person, has placed the tech oligarchy at the center of media in the nation’s capital.

Yet, over time, acquiring existing media may prove just a sideshow. Far more critical will be the growth of their own oligarch-controlled news media. Yahoo is the No. 1 news site in the U.S., with 110 million monthly viewers. Google News isn’t far behind, at No. 4, with 65 million users. Facebook, according to Pew, has emerged as the second-largest source of political news, after local television.....

The politics of the oligarchs need to be better understood as they exert more control over our media. An analysis by researcher Gregory Ferenstein found that most Internet company founders are liberal Democrats, favoring increased immigration, with its promise of cheap, more pliable labor for their own operations. Unlike old-style Democrats, they are strongly hostile to unions, dismiss issues of class and believe that most issues can be addressed by digital technology and education. Hey, it worked for them!

This belief system, which Alphabet (Google) chairman Eric Schmidt said is a “kind of religion in and of itself,” assumes technology can address virtually all social problems. They see this happening largely by pushing media in the direction of their own version of progressivism. EBay co-founder Pierre Omidyar has pledged large sums to support a largely left-of-center investigative reporting site, First Look Media. Both Vox Media and Buzzfeed, emerging digital news brands, have received major investment from Silicon Valley firms.....

These and other tech applications could give the oligarchs a reach beyond that which the likes of Joseph Pulitzer, Horace Greeley or even Rupert Murdoch could imagine. With media consumers constantly on their phones, looking at their smart watches or logging onto their tablets, the flow of media messaging could become ubiquitous to a degree imagined before only in dystopian science fiction, or in how North Korea attempts to convince its impoverished, often-malnourished citizens through incessant propaganda that they live in an evolving socialist fairyland.

Reflecting a tech world that is ever more dominated by a few players, we may be on the verge of seeing news, culture and analysis concentrated in ever fewer hands. This could allow the oligarchs to become a media power of unprecedented dominance, a ubiquitous Big Brother looming from cyberspace..... Rest of article.

2 comments:

Anonymous said...

I read that FaceBook is launching a YYhhuugghh anti-Trump campaign. Will we be seeing more anti-GOP information in the future?

Anonymous said...

Facebook is made up of people posting stuff. Facebook doesn't post stuff.

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Trollfest '09

Trollfest '07 was such a success that Jackson Jambalaya will once again host Trollfest '09. Catch this great event which will leave NE Jackson & Fondren in flames. Othor Cain and his band, The Black Power Structure headline the night while Sonjay Poontang returns for an encore performance. Former Frank Melton bodyguard Marcus Wright makes his premier appearance at Trollfest singing "I'm a Sweet Transvestite" from "The Rocky Horror Picture Show." Kamikaze will sing his new hit, “How I sold out to da Man.” Robbie Bell again performs: “Mamas, don't let your babies grow up to be Bells” and “Any friend of Ed Peters is a friend of mine”. After the show, Ms. Bell will autograph copies of her mug shot photos. In a salute to “Dancing with the Stars”, Ms. Bell and Hinds County District Attorney Robert Smith will dance the Wango Tango.

Wrestling returns, except this time it will be a Battle Royal with Othor Cain, Ben Allen, Kim Wade, Haley Fisackerly, Alan Lange, and “Big Cat” Donna Ladd all in the ring at the same time. The Battle Royal will be in a steel cage, no time limit, no referee, and the losers must leave town. Marshand Crisler will be the honorary referee (as it gives him a title without actually having to do anything).


Meet KIM Waaaaaade at the Entergy Tent. For five pesos, Kim will sell you a chance to win a deed to a crack house on Ridgeway Street stuffed in the Howard Industries pinata. Don't worry if the pinata is beaten to shreds, as Mr. Wade has Jose, Emmanuel, and Carlos, all illegal immigrants, available as replacements for the it. Upon leaving the Entergy tent, fig leaves will be available in case Entergy literally takes everything you have as part of its Trollfest ticket price adjustment charge.

Donna Ladd of The Jackson Free Press will give several classes on learning how to write. Smearing, writing without factchecking, and reporting only one side of a story will be covered. A donation to pay their taxes will be accepted and she will be signing copies of their former federal tax liens. Ms. Ladd will give a dramatic reading of her two award-winning essays (They received The Jackson Free Press "Best Of" awards.) "Why everything is always about me" and "Why I cover murders better than anyone else in Jackson".

In the spirit of helping those who are less fortunate, Trollfest '09 adopts a cause for which a portion of the proceeds and donations will be donated: Keeping Frank Melton in his home. The “Keep Frank Melton From Being Homeless” booth will sell chances for five dollars to pin the tail on the jackass. John Reeves has graciously volunteered to be the jackass for this honorable excursion into saving Frank's ass. What's an ass between two friends after all? If Mr. Reeves is unable to um, perform, Speaker Billy McCoy has also volunteered as when the word “jackass” was mentioned he immediately ran as fast as he could to sign up.


In order to help clean up the legal profession, Adam Kilgore of the Mississippi Bar will be giving away free, round-trip plane tickets to the North Pole where they keep their bar complaint forms (which are NOT available online). If you don't want to go to the North Pole, you can enjoy Brant Brantley's (of the Mississippi Commission on Judicial Performance) free guided tours of the quicksand field over by High Street where all complaints against judges disappear. If for some reason you are unable to control yourself, never fear; Judge Houston Patton will operate his jail where no lawyers are needed or allowed as you just sit there for minutes... hours.... months...years until he decides he is tired of you sitting in his jail. Do not think Judge Patton is a bad judge however as he plans to serve free Mad Dog 20/20 to all inmates.

Trollfest '09 is a pet-friendly event as well. Feel free to bring your dog with you and do not worry if your pet gets hungry, as employees of the Jackson Zoo will be on hand to provide some of their animals as food when it gets to be feeding time for your little loved one.

Relax at the Fox News Tent. Since there are only three blonde reporters in Jackson (being blonde is a requirement for working at Fox News), Megan and Kathryn from WAPT and Wendy from WLBT will be on loan to Fox. To gain admittance to the VIP section, bring either your Republican Party ID card or a Rebel Flag. Bringing both and a torn-up Obama yard sign will entitle you to free drinks served by Megan, Wendy, and Kathryn. Get your tickets now. Since this is an event for trolls, no ID is required. Just bring the hate. Bring the family, Trollfest '09 is for EVERYONE!!!

This is definitely a Beaver production.


Note: Security provided by INS.

Trollfest '07

Jackson Jambalaya is the home of Trollfest '07. Catch this great event which promises to leave NE Jackson & Fondren in flames. Sonjay Poontang and his band headline the night with a special steel cage, no time limit "loser must leave town" bout between Alan Lange and "Big Cat"Donna Ladd following afterwards. Kamikaze will perform his new song F*** Bush, he's still a _____. Did I mention there was no referee? Dr. Heddy Matthias and Lori Gregory will face off in the undercard dueling with dangling participles and other um, devices. Robbie Bell will perform Her two latest songs: My Best Friends are in the Media and Mama's, Don't Let Your Babies Grow up to be George Bell. Sid Salter of The Clarion-Ledger will host "Pin the Tail on the Trial Lawyer", sponsored by State Farm.

There will be a hugging booth where in exchange for your young son, Frank Melton will give you a loooong hug. Trollfest will have a dunking booth where Muhammed the terrorist will curse you to Allah as you try to hit a target that will drop him into a vat of pig grease. However, in the true spirit of Separate But Equal, Don Imus and someone from NE Jackson will also sit in the dunking booth for an equal amount of time. Tom Head will give a reading for two hours on why he can't figure out who the hell he is. Cliff Cargill will give lessons with his .80 caliber desert eagle, using Frank Melton photos as targets. Tackleberry will be on hand for an autograph session. KIM Waaaaaade will be passing out free titles and deeds to crackhouses formerly owned by The Wood Street Players.

If you get tired come relax at the Fox News Tent. To gain admittance to the VIP section, bring either your Republican Party ID card or a Rebel Flag. Bringing both will entitle you to free drinks.Get your tickets now. Since this is an event for trolls, no ID is required, just bring the hate. Bring the family, Trollfest '07 is for EVERYONE!!!

This is definitely a Beaver production.

Note: Security provided by INS
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