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Here is my report from last weekend's Just Media: L.A. Media Reform Summit 2011, an annual event put on by a group I belong to, L.A. Media Reform:

This year’s Just Media: L.A. Media Reform Summit, held Feb. 26 at Occidental College, drew 200 activists, speakers and concerned members of the public for an all-day conference on how to build a better news and information environment for our communities. This was L.A. Media Reform’s fourth summit and was our best attended so far. Marty Kaplan, Director of The Norman Lear Center at the University of Southern California kicked off the day with a fascinating talk about how the kinds of news media people consume (public television, cable, or local news) determine their depth of knowledge of current events.

The afternoon’s panel session, Objectivity vs. Hate Speech & Fear-Mongering, featured Leslie Berestein Rojas, who writes KPCC’s Multi-American blog; Rick Jacobs, chair and founder of the Courage Campaign; Amanda Garces and Pedro Espinoza of the Mobile Voices Project; and Shakeel Syed, Executive Director of the Islamic Shura Council. Will Coley, L.A. Media Reform member and and founder of Aquifer Media, moderated the panel. The panelists engaged in a lively discussion about the corrosive effects of hate speech in the media that targets immigrants, religious minorities and people of color.

Attendees then fanned out into various workshops focusing on issues as diverse as public radio, blogs and the Internet, net neutrality, broadband and independent filmmaking. Our evening speaker, Beth McConnell, Executive Director of the Media & Democracy Coalition, closed with an inspiring talk encouraging citizens to create their own media to better inform their communities. Attendees later gathered at a networking reception featuring delicious hors d’oeuvres from Oxy’s student catering club, Well Fed. I hope that this year’s summit inspired more people to make improving our media climate a top priority, and helped them come up with ideas about how to use alternative media to make their voices heard.

See Will Coley’s photos from the summit by clicking here.

L.A. Media Reform would like to thank the following folks who helped make the 2011 Just Media Summit a success:

Speakers: Marty Kaplan, Leslie Berestein Rojas, Rick Jacobs, Amanda Garces, Pedro Espinoza, Shakeel Syed, Allison de Fren, Will Coley, William Swaim, Wendy Block, Michael Sigman, Dick Price, Sharon Kyle, the Spin Busters! and the Billionaires, Sue Wilson, Ron Cooper, Koverboyz, Dr. Katie Mills, Juan Devis, Justin Cram, Sean McLaughlin, Beth McConnell, Rick Staggenborg, MD, Gavin Dahl, Damien Newton, Tony Arranaga, Chris Kidd, Siel Ju, LaJuan Johnson, Sadie Dean, Candice Rodrigo, Shani Byard-Ngunjiri, Mera Szendro Bok

Our sponsors: California Common Cause, the Urban & Environmental Policy Institute at Occidental College, L.A. Progressive, Aquifer Media, The Benton Foundation, Center for Governmental Studies, Peoples College of Law, Uptown Gay & Lesbian Alliance, Urban Organizer, Media Alliance, ACLU Pasadena-Foothills Chapter, Valle Music Reproduction, LA Beez


Occidental College for hosting

The L.A. Media Reform Planning Committee: Amanda Shaffer, Will Coley, Dick Price, Sharon Kyle, Tapia Martinez-Russ and Sylvia Moore for putting this whole event together,

Anjuli Kronheim, Los Angeles Organizer, California Common Cause and liaison to the L.A. Media Reform Planning Committee for her top-notch networking skills,

Tapia Martinez-Russ and her music partner for providing the lovely entertainment,

Well Fed for providing the delicious refreshments,

Our wonderful volunteers for helping us set up, and all the members of the public who attended!

Originally posted at

Originally posted to mooremusings on Fri Mar 04, 2011 at 01:38 PM PST.

Also republished by Kos Angelenos.

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Comment Preferences

  •  This is important work (5+ / 0-)

    The summit topics look like they are right on the mark.  Thanks for the informative diary and for doing this work.

    "We can't solve problems by using the same kind of thinking we used when we created them." ~Albert Einstein

    by ParkRanger on Fri Mar 04, 2011 at 02:51:40 PM PST

  •  Thanks from Wisconsin! n/t (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Pris from LA, princss6

    Dream, that's the thing to do (Johnny Mercer)

    by plankbob on Fri Mar 04, 2011 at 05:17:57 PM PST

  •  Easy fix, really. (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    blueoasis, Pris from LA, princss6

    Reinstate the Fairness Doctrine and make it illegal for a news outlet to lie.

    When the rose lies withered by the roadside don't try to negotiate the bloom.

    by Atilla the Honey Bunny on Fri Mar 04, 2011 at 05:43:31 PM PST

    •  ATB - First Amendment issues (0+ / 0-)

      The media has a First Amendment right to lie. Have you ever read some of the political news during the period when the Constitution was being drafted and ratified? It makes the media today look like a gathering of saints. In the area of political speech the founders wanted to make sure there were no holds barred. The problem is that as soon as some official body decides the "truth" you have censorship. In addition, there are hundreds of factual mistakes here on DKOS every day. Most of the people who write them believe that they are factual and truthful, but they aren't. In some cases the sources are not accurate and in other cases people misunderstood the material. The same is true in the media.

      I was in the broadcasting business during the last Fairness Doctrine and will fight, along with many other progressives, to my dying breath before I will allow it to return. We are the party of free speech, not mandated speech.

      "let's talk about that"

      by VClib on Fri Mar 04, 2011 at 10:13:37 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  Couldn't disagree more. Here is why. (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Pris from LA

         The government did not mandate anything except that multiple points of view must be presented.  There was no censorship.  At that time women, labor, minorities all had their views presented, by law.  Broadcasters were licensed to use the people's airwaves in the public interest and presenting multiple points of view was the ONLY mandate.  That is gone.  You don't see anything but the plutocrats views today.

        I also worked in broadcasting.  I won the Ohio Association of Broadcaster's annual scholarship in 1968.  I remember when stations had to actually worry about maintaining their licenses before Reagan  got the gubmint off their backs and paved the way for Rush Limbaugh and hate radio at large, all of whom share your exact argument.  

        Give me the New Deal.  It worked superbly, as did the Fairness Doctrine.

        When the rose lies withered by the roadside don't try to negotiate the bloom.

        by Atilla the Honey Bunny on Fri Mar 04, 2011 at 11:04:27 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

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