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OWS Encourages The Growth Of Independent Media

By   Follow Me on Twitter     Message Justin Samuels       (Page 1 of 1 pages)     Permalink    (# of views)   1 comment

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Occupy Wall Street Protests have increased the traffic flow to independent news source. It has done so by creating the demand for information outside the official corporate sources. A curious public wants to get closer to the real source of information on the protests themselves, and not have this information filtered out by ceos and politicians. OWS has pushed public distrust of the establishment media to the forefront.

The official news outlets are owned by just a few large companies. These companies support a pro corporate agenda politically, and are reluctant to cover anything that opposes the pro corporate agenda. They have acted as gatekeepers to information, and often they squash viewpoints that they don't like. In the beginning, social media such as Facebook, google plus, and twitter spread news of Occupy. At this time, mainstream media sought to ignore the movement. Mainstream media only covered the protests after the Union Square and Brooklyn Bridge incidents. At this point the protests had become so big they had no choice to do so. A cover up would have been too suspicious. The mainstream media is aware that it cannot go too far in abusing the trust of the public. To do so would cost them their viewers and render them obsolete. The mainstream media becoming obsolete started when the majority of the public got high speed internet, as it made more news available. The establishment newspapers also not only lost readers, but over the years they've lost classified advertising revenue to craigslist. In addition, newsstand prices of newspapers such as the New York Times and the Wall Street Journal continue to rise. This means they lose readership among the 99%. OWS speeds up the process in which readers flock to new media and the old establishment loses readers and therefore advertising revenue.

As Occupy movements spread around the world, independent media typically made more detailed and fair coverage of the protests. Those who sought to learn more about the protests went to various media outlets that post on youtube, or other sites that host videos. People posted videos on Facebook, google plus, and twitter. When people used google or other search engines to find more news on OWS, they learned of various blogs, sites, and newspapers that weren't apart of the biggest corporations. Moxnews and Russia Today, with their postings on youtube, are excellent examples of this. In essence, OWS is rejuvenating the media. Media consolidation in the past 20 years in the United States has lead to loss of diversity in viewpoints expressed on the media, the over politicization of news in the United States, and led to increased partisanship in the political domain. The former concept of fair and balanced coverage, which previously had existed in the United States, died out in the 90s with the birth of 24 hour cable news and the media consolidation which occurred then. By helping independent media to grow, OWS is restoring the concept of fair and balanced coverage to the United States. OWS has created its own media as well. There's Occupy Wall Street Journal and Occupy Gazette. As the new media expands, it will gain advertising revenue and subscriptions. Some new media exists on donations, which also increase when a sites profile rises. OWS is fostering the growth of new businesses and launching new careers.

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OWS also is creating the next generation of reporters. Today's current modern technology has made potential reporters of everyone. When police brutalized protesters, other protesters took out camcorders, digital cameras, smart phones, and other electronic recording devices. Protesters submitted these videos to media across the board. Others are being inspired to write about what they've seen and experienced about the movement. Bloggers, who have blogged about culture or politics are now getting a lot more exposure because of the protests. A good example of a blogger in the process of becoming famous is Pavel Podolyak, whose blog can be found at And Facebook, twitter, and google plus have become a serious source of info. A number of unemployed and underemployed are unleashing their creativity and connecting with each other. As the old monopolies find themselves in danger of ultimate collapse, today's activists will build new institutions. In much the same way, unemployed and underemployed engineers and tech hobbyists created tech companies in the 80s and 90s that changed the world.

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Screenwriter. Historian. BA in History and certificate in Latin American studies from Cornell University. MA in English Education from Columbia University. Very interested in public policy.

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