In my efforts to further commit myself to pushing progressive reforms in communities I am part of, I have recently decided to head a media reform student organization at Columbia College Chicago.
So far, this looks like it will be a truly remarkable organization for students to be a part of. Faculty members from the college are involved in the process and eager to work with students to push media reform not just in the area of access to news but in the fields of film, music, graphic design, photography, radio, fiction and nonfiction writing, etc. where censorship and corporatization has affected artists’ ability to produce quality art.
The decision to volunteer to run a media reform group was made at an antiwar forum held on campus.
At the forum, I spoke on a panel about the need for students to oppose the Iraq war and to go beyond just rejecting it personally. As artists, I spoke of the need for them to speak out about the Iraq war or the problems the Iraq war raises in the art students create. (*This was where I came up with my Creating the Ethos One Step at a Time campaign for my student government run here at Columbia College.)
It was amazing how much students were upset with the media during the forum. They were not so much upset with the Iraq war. Instead, they were very upset that the media had up to this point kept the truth of what was going on in the Iraq war and in the pre-invasion from them.
Towards the end of the forum, a faculty member told us about how we could go to a media reform conference in June and how she wanted to start a media reform group. I jumped at the opportunity and offered the services of OpEdNews to anybody who wanted to utilize them because OpEdNews is at the front of the battle for media reform.
One month later, we had our first meeting and came together with a little over ten people (four of them being faculty members at Columbia). We spoke of all the things we want to do on campus for media reform. Our campus has many issues for us to take up and deal with.
If you’ve followed the trends of media consolidation in this country or the current crisis in journalism in America (through books like Tragedy & Farce by Nichols and McChesney), than you won’t be surprised by the fact that Columbia College’s newspaper and radio station is atrociously bad.
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