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pdx indymedia worker drones now reserve the right to hide any newswire articles that are "reposted from corporate media outlets"

Okay, here's the "official" announcement of the newest addition to the pdx indymedia editorial policy. Something like this shoulda gone up before drones started composting during the last 10 or so days, admittedly. Sorry!
portland indymedia exists "for the creation of radical, accurate, and passionate tellings of truth". The Indymedia movement sprang out of the WTO Protests in Seattle in Nov. 1999 as a way for real people to share their news without a corporate filter. Indymedia activists recognized then what is even more clear now: that mainstream media is owned and controlled by the same forces that build bombs and make wars, that cut down trees and slice off mountaintops, that kill animals and genetically alter plants, and that perpretrate and profit from racism, sexism, homophobia, and all other forms of oppression. That is, corporate media does not merely empower the repression and lies of the status-quo; it is part and parcel of the status quo itself. The need for Indymedia is greater than it has ever been.

Five years after Indyemdia's launch, over 160 Independent Media Centers are set up around the globe. Each has taken its own approach to the Indymedia concept. For example, here in Cascadia, the portland indymedia website has operated for over two years on the concept that center-column features should not be the sole territory of a small, exclusive group of writer/editors who carefully massage and vet each word, as happens at most IMC sites. Instead, center-column stories on the portland site are always created from stories posted to the open publishing newswire. These articles are featured word-for-word, with no editing or "correction". "Editing is lying," the Beats claimed. Maybe. But surely having someone else edit your work runs the risk of destroying it. That is avoided on the portland indymedia website.

The portland indymedia website has definitely succeeded in terms of providing an outlet for "radical, accurate, and passionate tellings of the truth". The amount of original content on the portland site is much higher than on many other IMC sites. Local stories have been broken here, important events have been announced (and even organized), and vital ideas discussed. Still, success always leaves room for improvement, and hence the portland indymedia website will now experience an essential next step in its evolution.

Since Saturday, Nov. 20, a new criteria for composting articles has appeared in the site's editorial policy. Now, portland indymedia worker drones reserve the right to hide any newswire articles that are "reposted from corporate media outlets". These, and other hidden articles, can be found in the compost bin.

Naturally, some people will complain about this. One could draw the metaphor of addicts having their fix taken away, except that the drug in this case, Corporate Media, is just a few clicks away, somewhere else on the internet. At least for the time being. The goal for Indymdia, and for many other activist projects, is to be part of creating sustainable, alternative methods and communities that will eventually make destructive, mainstream institutions and corporations irrelevant. "Uno otro mundo es posible", they call out from the Global South. Indeed, another world is possible, but making real breaks from the current one are necessary if we are to succeed. As long as people lean, crutch-like, on the corporate media, that much less energy is going into the creation of a truly alternative media.

Indymedia was never intended to be a one-stop-source for all news. Without the poison of corporate media, the portland indymedia website will now have a much better signal-to-noise ratio, and will perform better as a media source for the creation (not reposting) of "radical, accurate, and passionate tellings of truth" (which the corporate media doesn't publish, anyway).

To help clarify, here is a list of examples of the types of articles that are original and non-corporate. This is not an exhaustive list, but it should hit most of it:

  • your report from any event (local or not), including but not limited to: protests, lectures, meetings, community gatherings. (Can be audio/video/photographic in nature; text not necessary though some words are needed to anchor a center-column feature, if that's what you're going for.)
  • your analysis of any current issue whether local, national or global.
  • your review/critique of a book, movie, tv show, newspaper/magazine article.
  • announcements/calls-to-action, for events or campaigns ("come to this protest" or "please write letters to these people re. this subject")
  • press releases from activist organizations or parties (i.e., the latest from Hanford Watch, the Green Party, any forest defense effort, political prisoner support)
  • original articles like any of the above REPOSTED from other non-corporate sources: other indymedia sites, other altnernative news sources (KBOO, the Alliance, Portland Communique, the Peaceworker, or national/global equivalents), zines, personal blogs. So, REPOSTS ARE OKAY, just not from corporate media.
The last one is the greyest area. Certainly, the Oregonian, KOIN, CNN, New York Times, etc. are corporate. CounterPunch.org, on the other hand, is decidedly non-corporate, with no advertisements except for books by their own featured writers. So a Jeffrey St. Clair article would remain on the newswire if someone reposted it. It's doubtful it would be featured to the center column, since CounterPunch already reaches a large audience, but it wouldn't be composted. The gray area between is where things will have to be worked out over time on a case-by-case basis until some clearer philosophy can emerge from practice.

To end this essay, here are some thoughts about corporate media from one of the pdx worker drones. It's a bit flippant in tone, but spot on with the points it makes.

I get sooooooooooo bored of reading through a bunch of boooooorrrrrrrring corporate media reposts just to find one thing that is original and relevant. Corporate media articles are fucking boring. They all come from a perspective of "the norm", "business-as-usual", etc. Even when they are a sensational piece, the voice behind them is always this sort of emotionless robot that is just reinforcing the status quo. Corporate media does not challenge my perception of reality. It does not inspire me to do anything. It just puts me to sleep.

[C]orporate media is a filter. It is a normality filter through which the public is made to view the world. The whole idea of "non-biased," or "objective" journalism goes against the very nature of what it is to be humyn. By attempting to look at things in a null-emotional state, we only desensitize ourselves to things toward which we would do better to be sensitive. They are trying to put us to sleep, to lure us into complacency. Humyns have invented a monster called "the system". It is composed of many organs, including the various corporations that exist, the governmental structures that we use (or more appropriately, that "use us"). If it is a plant, then the philosophy and process of capitalism is its photosynthesis. The corporate media structure is one of the tools that this unemotional monster uses to keep us humyns programmed into the sort of emotions that it can use to manipulate us. The only way we can overcome this manipulation is by refusing to view the world through its filter. I read somewhere that advertising works on you even if you are aware of its influence, and in fact that false sense of being "in on the joke" and therefore immune to its psychological manipulations is one of the factors marketing geniuses rely upon to succeed with their ads. And as we all know, corporate media is just another form of advertisement.

By getting rid of corporate media on our site, we are not "filtering out" a voice, we are ridding ourselves or a filter imposed on us by the hundreds/thousands of misguided fools who repeatedly spam us with corporate bullshit. An AWFUL lot of the corporate shit on PDXIMC is cross-posted garbage shit about some boring goddamned thing that was important to some individual 3000 fucking miles away who wants to feel special, so they repost the shit to every open-publishing site that will take their crap. Whatever. Sorry, not meaning to be mean, but fuck that.

I'm not saying I'll never repost, as on occasion I have, for example I transcribed a few 2600 articles here and there in the past. But that's shit you can't get anywhere else online, and their publication is "user-written", meaning that they take article content from readers who send it in. In my opinion, that quallifies them as open-publishing. I think in the future though, I will take the effort to write my own article and cite info from theirs rather than regurgitate it. I digress. Whatever.

-----

Other pdx indymedia worker drones will hopefully chime in on this post, to fill the picture out more completely. i am merely workerbee #6082, only one drone in the busy hive. :)


devil's advocate 01.Dec.2004 00:22

Teddy Ruxpin (The Lousy Typist)

In all honesty, IMC could get sued if the corporate types every took notice (recent seizures of hard drives from IMC servers prove that it can be hit by court goons).

And you know, sites like drudge or rawstory.com (liberal drudge) exist for corporate reposts.

Hey, I don't work for IMC, and I think they have been heavy-handed in the past, but have you ever honestly taken a look in the compost bin here? I mean really? Most of that crap could be used as a warning to cousins that are making out, "don't fuck your cousin, or you kids will write tripe like this." Most of it is repeats, the hundredth chemtrail story or the thousandth "IDF are bastards" tale. Rarely are these posts new, mostly they are the same exact stories told over and over again with no updates, as if this was not a new site so much as a repository of history.

take a look, now, Teddy 01.Dec.2004 00:38

,

Pretty interesting stuff being composted, and somepostings which started in the compost bin as well.

one goal: building sustainable alternatives 01.Dec.2004 00:48

indy volunteer #742

Well, the "imc", if such an entity existed, could be sued, it has been tried before, but generally fair use protects the reposting of copyrighted materials so long as they contain a citation and are not distributed for profit and to an audience that has expressed prior interest for research purposes. That has been the case on this site.

"Most of that crap could be used as a warning to cousins that are making out"

lol :) Glad to see you're checking though, with any luck maybe the compost bin will get a little more usage now. ;)

That third paragraph in the blockquote sounds like a pretty harsh criticism (though I know it was aimed at the spammers, not just those who repost a corporate media story they feel is important for one reason or another) but I just wanted to point out that if people are misguided in their corporate media reposts it is because there haven't been very good guides. That's what I want to get better at, showing people how important it is, to me and to others, to hear them speak about their experiences not what someone else says about their experiences.

This is not an indictment of journalism or journalists, or those that still read corporate media. Journalism seemed to be a pretty respectable thing once upon a time (at least as it's told in history books, but who can trust those), though I disagree with its tenants as they are all to often still taught. Here's to the new journalism: passionate and honest.

Cheers!

And thanks to all those with the courage and trust to walk this path together.

thanks portland indymedia 01.Dec.2004 00:52

~Bradley

quickly, i just want to say thanks so much for portland indymedia.
pdx-imc means so much to me, in so many ways, trust me....

i'm very happy with this decision by pdx.indy worker drones.

the newswire is for the creation of grassroots media.
that is what i look for in indymedia.
that is why i suggest to people that they participate in indymedia.

i think the worker drones here at pdx-imc are doing a great community service!
.....for the local portland community and our global community.
and, the pdx-imc readers/commmenters/contributors are awesome as well, of course!

thanks for the inspiration.
it's great being part of the community.

definitely establish that the editorial policy will be acknowledged 01.Dec.2004 00:52

wilco

re; a comment from the kirsten anderberg fume over trolls, etc. . Would it not be a good idea to have the editorial policy appear in a pop-up on the "add a comment page" and the "write an article page", that users must click before they can proceed to post? Seems as though this might avoid the perennial complaints about censoring and composting, etc.

vagueness is dangerous 01.Dec.2004 00:56

a.co

I'm a little worried by this new policy.
I'm worried that pdx indymedia will now be shut off from important news stories. I can only hope that instead this inspires people who find important stuff in the corporate media to research and write more about the subject, but I'm still worried that if someone does that but uses a corporate media outlet as their main source (b/c there isn't much else available), it might get composted.
What worries me even more, though, is what indymedia worker drones identify as "corporate." It seems like these folks are rewriting the definition of that word for us to mean for-profit. This totally isolates this news source from a lot of other really important news sources, particularly those coming from communities of color. While I would not call the Portland Observer or The Skanner corporate news sources, it seems as if their advertising policies or their different ideological standpoint might result in them being added into the corporate compost bin.

At any rate, wherever the news is coming from, I strongly encourage folks to write their own articles when they find something that interests them. Do some research. Quote your sources, be they corporate, individuals, or non-corporate news. Admit your subjectivity. Tell us the background you're coming from that leads you to your opinions if you're comfortable and it's applicable.

I understand the need for such a policy, I just think it's incredibly dangerous to think that you know more than everyone else, and that you are in the right. We need to be constantly questioning ourselves, and looking to what others are doing, how they're doing it, and why they choose to do it that way in order to gain some perspective on our own decisions and opinions.

don't be worried 01.Dec.2004 01:09

indy volunteer

Really, the last thing I want is people to be more fearful then they already are. That's what I want to move away from. Less fear, more confidence.

I'm not aware of anyone defining "corporate" as "for-profit". If things are vague it's because the volunteers may not all agree at this point, or ever, on 1 definition that will encompass all situations. I want to continue to promote stories that are not reaching enough people, like those from smaller local papers. I'd love to have some of those writers publish here directly; that would be great.

If someone writes in their own words and uses corporate media as a source that will not be composted. Even if they put in a little effort, writing a paragraph or so about why people should or should not read a corporate media piece it won't get composted. So don't worry, if you find something you disagree with send us an email about it (that's the surest way to make sure many volunteers see it). We can always have a dialogue and work toward something everyone who participates can feel good about.

Just don't worry, it's really not worth it (in my opinion).

lol teddy 01.Dec.2004 01:11

Kissen cousi...Wait aminute! I only wanted to kiss my cousi

I think your correct in seeing the compost getting more traffic now! IndyMedia needs to decide how it wants to serve its regular readers. I guess time will tell if this was a correct decision on their part. Meantime, boodkmarking compost and trying to get that image of my hawt cousin out of my head!! ;P

what a joke 01.Dec.2004 01:27

a lot of reposts are not composts

i'll be pulling back even further from this site as a result of this policy.

please do so 01.Dec.2004 03:44

cointel watch

These little tricks are getting so played out, the cointel wannabees didn't do their homework...

"oh what, because I speak out against indymedia, I'm a cop"....

*puts books under arms*...Let me take you to school.

YES. Listen, if you can't put two words together to save us from the fluff, your not doing us any favors. If you can't analyze something new, or bring something to the table, then don't. Watch and learn. We don't need more mindless zombies passing off corp. media sloth...we need you to tell us if there is any truth to it, what you think, find another article, is it news or lies, a little of both, report what you think(or get out and bring news-hit to the table)..not corp. media...

1)I didn't know this started 10 days ago
2)since then, NONE of my ORIGINAL thoughts, based on CORP. sources have been composted

what? you think bringing something from the "nation"...is alternative? I can write political diatribe in my sleep. Let's get real here. CNN? well tell us why we need it here in your own words, re-invent, re-use, re-cycle...do something.

I'm one click away from anything you can bring to me, so it better be original, or I've heard it already...then again, you could just be some fed/troll, trying to quell dissent by attacking the opposition in the hopes of neutralizing it? Could that be?

Like I said, take your wannabee cointel attempt back to george. Show him this, and let him repeat the words he taught us, "You are either with us, or against us".

Read this message carefully, because it is not anti-american, or anti-bush...it's anti-oppression, pro-american, and my constitutional right.

Oh, and since you posted anonymously, and so did I, don't expect an answer to your rebuttal...we can both be cowards...but I got the last word, don't let the door hit you on the way out. *P.A.L.A.Y.*

How many articles do the "drones", 01.Dec.2004 04:39

reader

need to "carry to the compost bin each day"?

How many "original postings" do the "drones" contribute with themselves?

How many own posts do the person who "get sooooooooooo bored of reading through a bunch of boooooorrrrrrrring corporate media reposts just to find one thing that is original and relevant."
contribute with?

Sounds like a stupid spoiled brat who can't figure out that other people find the most informative details where some don't see anything.

To the seasoned researcher what the corporate media says and don't say
is as important to identify the lies, as is how they say it and in what context.

You -god damn it- don't start killing a winning horse!

Can't you see how dangerous this site has become in the eyes of the powers that be?

It's precisely just BECAUSE it shows and exposes the lies of the corporate media.

Original Posts Include Analysis and Critique of Corporate Content 01.Dec.2004 05:25

another volunteer

It should be pointed out that, like the commentor immediately above notes, it's important to look at how the corporate media does what it does, what it says and doesn't say, how it says it, and to learn how to "decode" its output and help others to do so too. It's called media literacy, and Indymedia has a role in this as well.

Instead of simply cutting and pasting an entire article from the New York Times, for example, why not deconstruct it, commenting on the words and phrases they chose and what connotations or denotations they have that are conveying a certain status quo worldview? This kind of analysis can be truly useful. One could even take advantage of the hypertextual nature of the web to link certain words to their real meanings or contexts, or at least the contexts you believe are relevant. Italicize certain phrases, cross out stuff (with the STRIKE tag) you want to emphasise is a lie... the possibilities are vast!


I dsagree with the new policy. 01.Dec.2004 06:42

Varro

Two major problems with the new policy:

1.) How are we to analyze distortions in corporate media articles if we don't know what they're saying because they've been composted?

2.) While we do want to encourage original reporting, oftentimes a corporate media article is of interest and can be used to provoke discussion on local issues.

That's why I'm against a blanket policy of composting corporate media articles, and encourage the editors to use discretion and realize that some articles will be of interest to readers.

Coping with the loss 01.Dec.2004 07:50

Mother

This site, abused as it is, has become my favorite one stop shop for news. Yes, much of it is reposted, and much of it is wacko, but it has been a great place to go for overall news diversity. I completely agree with the stated goals of the new policy AND I already miss what will be gone.

Is there any way this site can divest the "corporate" content into a useful format other than the compost bin? Of course all of this info is available elsewhere but it can be very hard to find. The odds of finding this good info is decreased immeasurably when one must scour the web universe by one's self. There are some gold nuggets in corporate content. They are random and scarce. I value being able to find them here with an increased degree of reliability. An important value of a collective resource is in the synergy of group efforts producing more useful output than individual efforts.

In the very least a permanent list of good links to alternative news sites other than IM would be most helpful. Some of these sites get mentioned in articles from time to time, but a concise collection, easy to find, would help ease the withdrawal and be a useful resource.

Please sub-divide the compost bin 01.Dec.2004 08:44

Tom (Astoria) tduncan@pacifier.com

I don't put fish bones, vegetable peelings and cat litter in the same compost bin-- they have to be treated differently or all you get is a stinking mess full of rats.

Similarly, IndyMedia has different reasons for composting articles, but now they all end up in the same place-- with I suspect, rather poor results.

A special category of compost-- "corporate waste" could easily be created. That would keep the original center and right columns "pure", while still allowing for the kind of community that has assembled around (but doesn't necessesarily share) the original IM concept to continue their own organizing around both corporate and non-corporate sources of news.

I understand that this would cause some extra work for the IM volunteers, and that it is a transformation, maybe even a distortion of the original intent of IndyMedia-- but hey, life is organic. Things change. Who ever thought the world wide web would come to this, back in the earliest days of the Internet? There was a time (about 1996) when I had to connect by 1200baud modem to a portal in Chicago to get onto the internet-- totally text-based and only UNIX-techy friendly. And I thought that was nearly unbelievable at that time.

The transformation to high-speed, graphic, non-tech usr friendly WWW has been dramatic, democracy-empowering and extremely rapid. Indymedia must be careful not to be left behind in omphaloskeptic searching for purity.

Also, the web and other tools of radical organizing are being co-opted by the global corporations in very sophisticated, democracy-destroying ways as this article from the (corporate) Asia Times about what is going on in Ukraine tries in its muddled way to make clear. "In Ukraine, a Franchised Revolution"  http://www.atimes.com/atimes/Central_Asia/FL02Ag01.html . I will post that to the right column because I believe it is crucial that all activists understand what is going on, and how the tools of activism are being turned against us

Mother 01.Dec.2004 08:59

has said it all, trust Mother.

These are good ideas. A list of alt media links run along the side of indy's home page would be a nice resource.
I, too, have come to love and trust indyPDX (sifting out the wackos, personal diatribes and chemtrail articles) as one of my first stops each day in finding out the day's news (Truthout, CommonDreams, Z magazine are some others) but, if you want mostly local news and calendar announcments, with a bit of national, regional, internat'l flavor- then indyPDX has been the best place to go.
I don't mind a bit of corporate news on the site, sometimes you're in a hurry to get the word out- and something already written can be useful, in a pinch. So, yeah, place it off to the side, in it's own special category, that would be fine.
I, too, don't want someone else deciding what I should read, or what is appropriate. Reading the corporate news lets us know what our opposition is thinking, how they are spinning a situation. Sometimes it is outright lies, but not always. We need to get more skilled at critiqueing the corporate news (media literacy & good critical thinking is essential). But don't censor it!

Just my two cents 01.Dec.2004 09:03

Me

To publish a policy maintaining that IMC editors "reserve the right" to compost ANYTHING, corporate or otherwise, is silly in my opinion. OF COURSE the IMC editors have that right, rightly so, and it should go without saying. Any news medium is only as good as its editors, and corporate media has only become as bad as it has because of editorial oversight, distortions, and hide-bound "policies" (and yes, I know that THOSE editors are often just part of the propaganda machine).

It's frequently necessary to repost "corporate" stuff just to analyze it, point out the distortions, or simply to bring it to the attention of those who might not otherwise see it. Most of what concerns us we only learn about initially from the corporate media. How else would we even have an inkling of what's happening in the world, corporate "filter" or not? Experience indicates many readers will read text if it's provided, but won't bother to click a link to the original corporate source. As well, many such articles are accessible only by registration or subscription, and so would be inaccessible to most people.

We've all seen instances of apparently well-written and researched stories that make reference to events reported in the corporate press but provide no substantiation. We see that in such cases the most frequent criticism is the lack of a source enabling readers to fact check the writer's information. For me, articles like that are annoyances, since I have no way of independently verifying the elements of the event, much less assess whether the writer is grinding a huge propaganda axe of his own.

On one level I can certainly understand the intention behind the new "no corporate" policy, but I fear that in establishing it as such, IMC runs a serious risk of throwing the baby out with the bathwater and eliminating an essential part of the information spectrum. No one is saying we should tolerate random and mindless regurgitations of corporate fluff, but we all know that hasn't been a problem in the past - at least not a difficult one - and in any case in those instances IMC editors knew what to do with that kind of spam.

In establishing "no corporate news" as a POLICY, the impetus is shifted from editorial discretion on a case-by-case basis, to taking everything in the named category and sweeping it up like so much trash. That's the way it is with "policies" and bureaucracies in general - they tend to become just as mindless and onerous as the problems they were intended to address. Sorry to have to use such a hackneyed phrase, but "If it ain't broke, don't fix it."

posting corporate media is easy as 1-2-3 01.Dec.2004 09:33

corporate media cookie monster

As someone who reads a shit ton of corporate news and loves indymedia i think people could benefit from taking what we called in the 80's a "chill pill".

i think this is a LOT less about censorship (the ludicrousness of indy readers calling composting corporate voices "censoring" i'm not even gonna get into) and a lot more about being lazy.

There is no reason why someone putting 2 minutes -- yes two minutes -- more time into putting a corporate repost on this site can't get it up there.

Frankly, I don't want to read stuff that the poster put less than that much time into, it's clutters out stuff by people that have.

This isn't censorship, it's quality over quanity, and it's totally in-line with the day of indymedia since day 1 -- to be an opposition alternative to corporate news.

To people afraid of not being able to read corporate media reposts:
- If you stop finding it here (which I really doubt is going to happen) visit commondreams.org,  http://news.bbc.co.uk,  http://news.google.com, tidepool.org. You will find 95% of it there I know because I read those sites daily. 50% on commondreams alone.

To people who post reposts and don't want to have 'em composted:
- this is so simple. Instead of your cut and paste job, just take 2 minutes to add some commentary.
here is a few sample intos, you can cut and paste them and add them. bookmark this comment (link in the upper right hand corner) and stop your complaining.

HANDY DANDY GUIDE TO CORPORATE REPOST INTROS:

1. This article about ________ seemed like a heap of bullshit to me! I especially felt that way about ______ part. What do you all think?

2. I read this article which had some new information I hadn't seen before. such as __________. Here is a link if you want to read it  http://coporatenewssite.com/articlename.html

3. Wow how did this writer for the ______ get away with this article?!? It's actually pretty good. It's discusses ______ and _____, which I hadn't seen before in the corporate news. Here is a link if you want to read it  http://coporatenewssite.com/articlename.html

--End Guide--

To people afraid that more leftist journalists with corporate media or that smaller local and/or harder to find "alternative" corporate media will get composted:
- While intros #1 or #2 could again solve this problem, I think this is a case where we can hope that indymedia editors with do a good job, since some readers might not think #1 and #2 neccessary when posting such an article.

this however is about 5% of the corporate reposts historically. If indymedia editors start composting this stuff gratitously, start complaining then...but let's give them the benifit of the doubt and get on with it for now since there is no evidence that this is has happened. Check the compost daily, stay vigilant!

To people who feel the site is being taken over:
- Indymedia has friggin public meetings!! Take it back over. You can be the heroic counter-coup. It's that easy. Check out the damn calendar for details. Geeze people....

And if you don't live in oregon than stop your whining, because as you saw from the first day you got to this site this is "news... for oregon".

Lastly please remember:
You could have posted 10 freshly analyzed corporate news pieces in the time you've been reading all this! Don't knock it till you try it!

close only count in horse shoes 01.Dec.2004 09:34

Dubya

I hope I did not instagate this at all. I only mean to be helpful, I responded in the middle of this INdY volenteer earier this week to the Poster who was worrried why his story repost was taken off and bared, But I have fun watching some storys evolve throught repost , it is neet how twisted it can get after the 12 time . and no one wants to be the bugger that get Bite by the corperate hound Dogs... any way have a grinnn...

Right On. 01.Dec.2004 09:59

CatWoman

I tried to have some of the concerns mentioned above about this new policy, but on reflection, I can't think of any reason for them. On the contrary, this is an EXCELLENT idea. Indymedia is a place for OUR voices. Yours, mine, the people's voice. This is where we tell our own stories. It's not a place to perpetuate the poison that creeps into every living room every day through thousands upon thousands of television screens and daily "news" papers. The corporate media lies. Corporate media is about controlling, incapacitating, and selling us to the corporate state. Corporate media IS an addiction. Why, then, should we expect indymedia to enable such a destructive habit? Yes, I love the idea of turning down that awful noise.

For those expressing concern that important stories might be missed, relax. If you need a fix, the pusher is always there: It's all just a click away. The airwaves are sinking under the weight of those stories. You're welcome to indulge, just not here. (I do not encourage taking that road, though. Corporate media leads to rotting atrophy of the mind. Trust me, I know...I'm still working on recovery from it. It's a looooong road fraught with relapses and bouts of blank staring.)

As for concerns that important stories might be missed, I don't think so. First, when was the last time the corporate media did anything but garble a really important story? Second, once again, you're free to use your own voice. If you read something in your forays to the dark side that seem important or worthy, by all means write something about what you read and why you think it's important. Likewise, if you want to criticize an article you read, do so. The drones have explained that this will not be composted. (Which is good, because I do that all the time.) But naked corporate reposts are no longer allowed, which means that we will have to rise above our corporate-induced passivity and native laziness and actually discover our OWN voices if we want to be heard. And after all, this is the only way to really be heard anyway.

Fuck the corporate media!

Viva la indymedia!

Thanks 01.Dec.2004 10:42

Den Mark, Vancouver

The new policy is excellent, & i trust Indyfolk to use it well. To post corporate commmercial news here is to show respect for it, respect which is unearned. Copies of Oregonian, Columbian, NYTimes, & such are available at libraries, for seeing what "journalism" has become. I would not wrap dead fish in those papers, out of respect for the dead fish. And teevee nooz obviously does not qualify as being Journalism. Thank god & goddess for Indymedia.

I agree with Cat Woman 01.Dec.2004 10:46

Brian Setzler

Fuck the corporate media!

Viva la indymedia!

I don't like censorship of any kind 01.Dec.2004 11:06

another drone

In your zeal to take on the corporate media, beware becoming no better than the corporate media in telling only part of a story. Let people publish what they want , but teach people the tools they need to know to recognize what is truth and what is spin.

IndyMedia has made itself irrelevant 01.Dec.2004 11:08

MediaWatch

Portland IndyMedia's "more radical than thou" policies have made it irrelevant as a tool of social change. The beautiful concept of an Independent Media Center has been sucked dry by the extreme, paranoid conspiracy theorist and immature "fuck (my daddy) the government" twitballs who've taken over the organization. Lots of people waste huge amounts of valuable energy blathering on angrily here, preaching to an ever-shrinking choir.

Yeah! 01.Dec.2004 11:09

Chuck Munson chuck@mutualaid.org

While I disagree with your policy about stories in the center column, I'm really excited to see another Indymedia taking action against the reposting of corporate article to the newswire. I've been arguing against this problem for many years. Thankfully, newer Indymedia software allows IMCs to manage this annoying problem by confining corporate articles to their own wire. Indymedia is about DIY, participatory media, not the reposting of corporate articles. As you all point out, those article are easily available on the Internet. What Indymedias should concentrate on is promoting and facilitating DIY media.

it's already everywhere, who needs more of it 01.Dec.2004 11:39

map

I think it is a great idea. Not only should they compost corporate words but, go on up the line and compost corporate everything. We are riding peace and pacifism to our own and future generations demise.

Here's an alternative solution 01.Dec.2004 12:12

mediator

I've been thinking about this issue for a while and agree with the new policy with one exception. Rather than put corporate media articles in the Compost Bin put them in the Corporate Can (or some other name). That way people can access the stories and still post what they consider to be valuable need to know information even if it is from a corporate source.

Face it, the corporate news breaks some stories and provides access to some information that the rest of us don't have access to. How many PDX IMC readers work overseas, for the US government or a multinational corporation? Few I would guess. But information about those entities is necessary and important to many PDX IMC readers. The new policy really would block out these stories - I think it's a legitimate concern.

So, why not create a separate place for these corporate articles (like the A22 or M20 pages)? People who don't want to see the corporate crap will be able to avoid it and people who want to see it are but a click away. Voila problem solved!

Umm 01.Dec.2004 12:41

some kid

if it's not broken, don't fix it.

what was wrong wiith indymedia a month ago? I liked it.

Please consider 01.Dec.2004 13:07

indy is important for many

When a commentary begins with, "This article about --- seemed like a heap of bullshit to me!", or "Fuck the Pigs!", I am way less likely to read it. And I won't send it to friends, family, or tack it on the walls of our clinic. And when pdximc is up on the computer, and one of the staff walks in the office, I click it off if something scatological is in a headline. Even if the content of the piece is useful, the use of tired language reduces the story's crediblity.

I live in rural Oregon, I am not a member of the inner clique, and my opinionsare likely not particularly welcome or important. But please consider. Thanks.

already starting a forced split personality motif? 01.Dec.2004 13:12

me

This could unfortunately in my opinoin go the route of the 'split personality' that I so despise on other IMCs front pages. I think that all visual organizational appearance issues should be tailorable within the use of the individual user of the website, with the main page entirely raw. If you only want to see creative posts or reposts or whatever, then you can individually tailor this.

the thread that started it all, "site changes" by the PIMC:
 http://portland.indymedia.org/en/2004/10/301517.shtml


I'd like to see the framework of a nurturing positive reinforcement to bring about more 'imcistas' instead of negative reinforcement (via censoring) strategy. I don't think that it can simply magically occur by censoring corporate posts. So while I agree with the PIMC goal, I don't think that this strategy is going to get you to that goal.

Protection? 01.Dec.2004 13:18

George Bender

Whenever I see people trying to protect people against information my alarm bell goes off.

What I'm sick and tired of is the conspiracy nut crap. Some of these people are clearly off their meds.

BULLSHIT!!! 01.Dec.2004 14:27

...

My "radical, accurate, and passionate tellings of truth" article on a national labor strike to revote this election by getting the controlling capitalists in their power base--our labor force, which is their pocketbooks--AND which had inspired lots of intelligent dialogue.....................was deleted by INDYMEDIA ITSELF. Along with my attempt to find out what happened.

A national labor strike could powerfully bring this establishment down. That is what I and the rest of the world want. By censoring the truth and therefore disempowering the people, you are perpetuating the status quo. I guess that more problems mean more people try to write articles, which gets your site more hits and you get more money for it..........

THANK YOU PDX IMC VOLUNTEERS 01.Dec.2004 15:16

Sancho Panza

Thank you for your new policy. I welcome an opportunity to visit this site and not see shit I can see on a half dozen other websites. I appreciate the commentary I find here on national stories, but I don't come here to get news about the Ukraine, Iraq, or other foreign hotspots (except inasmuch as there may be a local connection). No, I come here for PDX and PNW news.

If the easily-offended are insistent on living up to their name, and if you care about their offense, consider perhaps splitting the newswire into two sections like some other IMCs do: one for local news and commentary and another for reposted CorpMedia stories so the whiners won't have to go to more than one source for news (just like FOXNEWS viewers).

What's Been Lost 01.Dec.2004 15:38

@

My 2 cents. No doubt to be ignored. I find the greatest value of PDX Indy's (former) open publishing policy allowing corportae media posts to be the open commentary that follows. There are some very aware and well-informed people whose comments are extremely enlightening in debunking corporate media spin, corporate media's omission of facts, and corporate media's bias in these stories. Often even the summary helps expose various myths and biases of the corporate media's articles when reading them.

It's easy enough for people wanting to avoid any corporate media articles to click another page, but please reconsider your policy for those of us trying to expose the corporate media's agenda, and those of us trying to learn more about how controlled and anemic the corporate media is in the U.S.

This is a serious loss of dialogue and debate that is now absent from many Indymedias. It has been one of PDY Indy's strengths.

what about this? 01.Dec.2004 15:52

more

I think '@' is correct. Even if a corproate post was put on the newswire (NOT A CRIME IN MY OPINION, despite the incessant repeating that is "certainly is"), then there was a collective dismantling of it. That was the charm I hope you see you seem to plan to demote.

Sometimes people post corporate media posts, to ASK FOR MORE ANALYSIS, instead of having something themselves. You are lobotomizing that activity as well.

oh get over it, people! 01.Dec.2004 16:23

regular reader

Indymedia is for MAKING MEDIA. This new policy is saying that shit that ain't newly made media will be hidden. Sounds like what should have happened a long time ago, like from the beginning.

"Indymedia was never intended to be a one-stop-source for all news." So what if y'all have gotten lazy and are using it for that. It ain't that, ain't supposed to be that, and ain't gonna be that now.

As for the person who wrote, "Coping with the loss". Oh jesus h. fucking christopher, tell that to the people in Falluja. (about which there are many great stories from foreign press that would not be hidden under this new policy, if I understand it right.)

Quit yer whinin'. You can still repost any corporate media article you like AS LONG AS YOU WRITE SOMETHING ORIGINAL ABOUT IT. Like "corporate media cookie monster" wrote, just do this:

HANDY DANDY GUIDE TO CORPORATE REPOST INTROS:

1. This article about ________ seemed like a heap of bullshit to me! I especially felt that way about ______ part. What do you all think?

2. I read this article which had some new information I hadn't seen before. such as __________. Here is a link if you want to read it  http://coporatenewssite.com/articlename.html

3. Wow how did this writer for the ______ get away with this article?!? It's actually pretty good. It's discusses ______ and _____, which I hadn't seen before in the corporate news. Here is a link if you want to read it  http://coporatenewssite.com/articlename.html

--End Guide--

I don't feel sorry for any freakin' crybaby who's upset because Portland IMC will no longer be their optimal passive resource. The point is to get active, not to be a fucking consumer any more. Get off yer fucking asses.

reply 01.Dec.2004 17:38

indy geek

"Portland IndyMedia's "more radical than thou" policies have made it irrelevant as a tool of social change. The beautiful concept of an Independent Media Center has been sucked dry by the extreme, paranoid conspiracy theorist and immature "fuck (my daddy) the government" twitballs who've taken over the organization. Lots of people waste huge amounts of valuable energy blathering on angrily here, preaching to an ever-shrinking choir."


Hmmm, funny that the readership has doubled each of the past two years. Guess you don't know what you are talking about do ya! :-)

reply 01.Dec.2004 17:44

indy geek

"My "radical, accurate, and passionate tellings of truth" article on a national labor strike to revote this election by getting the controlling capitalists in their power base--our labor force, which is their pocketbooks--AND which had inspired lots of intelligent dialogue.....................was deleted by INDYMEDIA ITSELF. Along with my attempt to find out what happened.

A national labor strike could powerfully bring this establishment down. That is what I and the rest of the world want. By censoring the truth and therefore disempowering the people, you are perpetuating the status quo. I guess that more problems mean more people try to write articles, which gets your site more hits and you get more money for it.........."


I guess this is not a serious post as it is rather well known that nobody involved in pdx imc gets any money for indymedia work, not for site hits (which are steadily climbing) or for any other reason

However, if your post was hidden on pdx indy as you say, do write and let people know and it will be addressed

Bye Bye PDX Indy 01.Dec.2004 18:06

another regular reader, contributor, and financial supporter

"I don't feel sorry for any freakin' crybaby who's upset because Portland IMC will no longer be their optimal passive resource. The point is to get active, not to be a fucking consumer any more. Get off yer fucking asses."

And so PDX Indy falls to the self-immolation of left purity standards to become a shadow of its former self. Instead of the ability to gut corporate media propaganda, we gut PDX Indy instead. DC Indy, for example, was once a much more vibrant place for information, discussion, and debate. It is far less interesting, with far less substance now, than under its former open publishing guidelines. There's nothing passive about debunking corporate media with solid facts and criticism. FAIR and Media Matters for America barely scratch the surface alone. And if your eloquence is any sign of what we can expect from strict adherance to the new publishing guidelines, then PDX Indy has slipped a long way indeed.

get over it! your position lost! yer with us or against us! 01.Dec.2004 18:46

Ken Spice spice@inkemail.com

More wonderful dialog over this change to indymedia! Get over it indeed! You're either with us or against us after all. Quit yer whining!

Well, this is all of our site and we all have a say. Don't like it? Tough! (or, if you have the password, then "don't like it? delete!")

Thanks for defining what indymedia is, "regular reader". You don't have a clue, though. I can tell you first-hand that there is only one reason portland.indymedia.org was created, and that was to serve as an open-publishing resource for radicals in Portland. Anything else is cruft that has grown on since.

Fuck the corporate Media! 01.Dec.2004 18:48

Media Watch

Thanks PDX indymedia! Yeh! What's up with all the weird defending of corporate reposts?! Did anybody read that crap anyway? I thought it was just taking up space...I guess people liked posting it, but I sure never liked reading it. Thanks for clearing the air!

(Oh, and to the person from rural oregon who doesn't like swearing...apologies for that. I couldn't help ot. Actually, though, I really do love it that you use the site, even if I can't necessarily change the way I communicate. Hopefully it won't offend you too much.)

corporate media = cruft 01.Dec.2004 18:55

.

And I'm glad to see it composted with the rest of the cruft.

Corporate media redux 01.Dec.2004 19:34

Chuck Munson chuck@mutualaid.org

Right on, Ken. Indymedia exists to serve the voices of radicals, activists and community people interested in speaking truth to power. Over the years, around the Indymedia network, we've let the anonymous trolls normalize Indymedia as a kind of free speech pigpen. Corporate media should never be featured on Indymedia websites and the changes that IMCs have made to marginalize corporate media re-posts are necessary. Indymedia should be about DIY media and independent radical voices. The corporations have billions to brainwash people with their hideous messages; Indymedia exists to provide a tiny alternative.

The argument that corporate reposts should be allowed in order for people to analyze them sounds reasonable on the surface. This can still be done if reposts are confined to the "otherpress" or the "compost bin." In reality, very little analysis is ever posted after corporate media reposts. More importantly, if people are serious about critiquing corporate media pieces, they should go post on the bulletin boards run by the corporate media. If you post critiques on this website, they will mostly be read by the usual suspects. But if you go an post on Yahoo.com or Slashdot, that will expose more people to radical media analysis.

Why are people complaining so loudly here? I suspect that many of them are trolls and right-wingers who are hostile to Indymedia and are posting complaints to disrupt the website. We know that right-wingers have organized groups of people to disrupt Indymedia websites. We know that the police and the government posts to Indymedia websites. It has to be assumed that the resistance to common sense changes is whipped up by these hostile people.

Re: Why are people complaining so loudly here? 01.Dec.2004 20:15

@ (again)

No, not a troll, not a right-winger, and not trying to disrupt Indymedia. Just disappointed that after 5 years of contributing to Indymedia, from ___DAY 1___, and after donating hundreds of dollars and thousands of hours to keeping Indymedia useful and informative, both through dissecting corporate media BS, and with original contributions, that such a change in editorial policy has been made. Ironically despite Chuck-O's criticism, Infoshop routinely allows some corporate media coverage in its newswire, with similar enlightening commentary. It doesn't represent the majority of news there, and such sharing of select corporate news for information and rebuttal has never monopolized PDX Indymedia's newswire to the best of my recollection. There has always been a wide spectrum of news articles present.

You don't need any right-wing help to further marginalize Indymedia: this new editorial policy will do just fine. I'm sure both the corporate media and right-wing trolls applaud the decision. But hey, it's the editorial collective's decision. Fine. Just sad to see one of the last truly useful resources slip down the drain.

BTW Chuck-O: really, really weak casting those indymedia contributors who disagree as right-wing infiltrators. I seem to recall you chastising several posters on Infoshop for resorting to such debate-killing tactics of smearing the messenger. Ironically, Infoshop was my next choice to contribute funds after PDX Indy. Guess I'll rethink that as well. In an age where funds and time to contribute to any worthy cause are so scarce, no one wants to waste their resources on ineffective activism. Time to move on (and I don't mean to MoveOn.org).

give it a few months, keep it open, experiment: avoid wagon circling 01.Dec.2004 20:16

me

People are complaining because circling the wagons is not a proactive response, cutting down on openness and free speech is not a proactive response, and any 'reform' that elicits such hostility I suggest should be revisited on the agenda, say, in six months, to see if there has been any change. I think that is what is going to be done anyway.

Don't become like your closed minded enemies...

media 01.Dec.2004 21:34

reader, author

i sometimes write stuff and post it to the wire, but on occassion i respost what i consider to be an important story from the corporate news. for example, i resposted the story about Guiterrez. the article was chalked full of info about what bad news this guy is. I did not know about him and i figured a lot of other people did not either so i felt posting it was informative. sure, i could have looked up some stuff and wrote up my own little editorial, but time is precious so why rewrite what was already very well done? see my point? i do think that some corporate news can have its place despite my general loathing of the media.

its IMC not IM, u foolz 01.Dec.2004 22:07

guest

Indymedia names:

Indymedia not IndyMedia or Indy Media
IMC not IM

Get it right, bleh.

Where did all these people come from? 01.Dec.2004 22:39

Dorothy

All these people who suddenly want to 'critique' corporate media?

also.. 01.Dec.2004 23:34

guest

A comment that is a bit more relevant...

Fuck yeah...
Indymedia was created as an alternative mode of gathering news. Don't cling to the old model, it is boring and obsolete. Indymedia is what you make it! Make it great and awesome and all powerful!

(j/k about that all powerfull bit, you know how anarchists are about power)

reply 02.Dec.2004 01:06

indy geek

People are complaining because circling the wagons is not a proactive response, cutting down on openness and free speech is not a proactive response, and any 'reform' that elicits such hostility I suggest should be revisited on the agenda, say, in six months, to see if there has been any change. I think that is what is going to be done anyway.

Don't become like your closed minded enemies...

******

pdx indy has done a number of things over the past few years that have elicited hostility, cries that pdx was finished, or sorrow over its demise. it is still here and growing steadily. there is simply too much fear, too much despair in this country. take heart people!

there is no wagon circling going on here. fear and despair are not driving these changes. such changes are the result of visions and musings on what a better world looks like, what is longed for in the heart. there are more changes coming. look at the site these past days it is vibrant, alive, lots of excellent local features and stories

short of external forces taking it down, this site is not going anywhere

reply 02.Dec.2004 01:12

indy geek

"i do think that some corporate news can have its place despite my general loathing of the media."



the problem is when the number of people posting to the site grows to the point that each one posting a corporate media article every couple days makes for too many corporate media articles. if it stayed a trickle, there would not be this new approach and this conversation

hopefully this will make posters think more about it and whether it is really useful to post that corporate media article.

reply 02.Dec.2004 02:05

indy geek

And so PDX Indy falls to the self-immolation of left purity standards to become a shadow of its former self.



why so defeatist and despairing?
rejoice in vibrant experimentation!
a new day is dawning...

Some further thoughts on the site changes 02.Dec.2004 02:10

indy geek

There has been quite a bit of discussion yeah and nay to the new approach of composting corporate media reposts. There seems to be a small amount of misconception and some facets which have not been talked about yet.

Media criticism is not only welcome, but encouraged. If you really get down to it, it is a simple change to ask people who are posting corporate media for purposes of criticism, to write some criticism. To take a little time and say something about it, to deconstruct it. Many readers may not see the spin and the lies of corporate media. Just posting up an article with no commentary is allowing those lies to be propagated without any counter force. Many c m articles receive no such critique that a few posters have mentioned as valuable discourse (and it is valuable and yes your 2 cents are heard).

Over each of the past two years, the site readership has roughly doubled (and it is a diverse readership, not just the choir). As there are more readers and posters, the total number of corporate media reposts has increased, obviously. All the cost of maintaining a site infrastructure that can deal with 2 million or more pages served in a month comes out of peoples pockets, with the occasional tech benefit (This saturday at the clinton street theatre). There is no pledge drive, no ongoing call for donations, no grants, no sponsors, no pressure put on readers to offer financial assistance. How rare is that?

Every corporate media repost uses site resources. It goes into the archives. It takes up space, displaces other original articles, uses bandwidth, and takes time from volunteers who do editorial work. More and more posts mean more bandwidth, more harddrives, more human hours to upgrade software and do sysadmin work etc

As one person who volunteers time and enery said "I don't want to spend my time and money to help corporate media spread its message." This country is plagued by indescriminate and wasteful use of resources. Many people are not in the habit of really considering where those resources come from, the cost, in dollars, environmental impact and in human time and energy. pdx indy makes posting so easy, that it encourages casual corporate reposts without any real reason to do so. Many of them have no real striking new information of any importance. For the few that do, write why.

The pdx indy site cannot be everything to everybody. If there were unlimited resources and many more human hours, such a thing could be attempted. There are not and the argument can be made that it would not be the right thing to do anyway. In a social climate where very few things succeed and grow in a positive direction, it may be understandable that any changes will be met with some cries of 'that is the end of pdx indy'. Just as a reminder, that cry has happened a number of times over the past few years, and pdx indy is still growing.

The changes are not driven by concepts of ideological purity as some wonder, but by thoughts of what works and what will make the effort more useful to bring about positive change.

pdx indy is an ongoing experiment. If every person in the country read every good article on the internet, was well informed, yet went about business as usual, all the information would serve no purpose. Ultimately, the information is only as useful as its effect to bring about sustainable culture. Information, without comensurate action/change, becomes yet another form of consumerism.

There will be other modest changes coming to the site in the coming weeks and months as .

The site is going well, with many solid stories up in the past days. There are regular video showings of almost all locally produced videos, the audio group is solid and is gaining recognition around the world for its coverage. The tech group is doing a helluva job not only with pdx, but helping other imc sites, and other activist groups in the region. Then there is the cable access news program. pdx indy is far from demise.

Closed minds will only lose out in the long run 02.Dec.2004 10:02

Hal E. Burton

Noam Chomsky calls the Wall Street Journal "the place where capitalism occasionally tells the truth about itself." And I'll guarantee that his file cabinets are filled with "corporate" media clips.

They can't lie to each other much when there's real money involved.

Don't stereotype "corporate" media; when you limit your information, you limit your knowledge.

Response to @ 02.Dec.2004 11:09

Chuck0 chuck@mutualaid.org

"Ironically despite Chuck-O's criticism, Infoshop routinely allows some corporate media coverage in its newswire, with similar enlightening commentary. It doesn't represent the majority of news there, and such sharing of select corporate news for information and rebuttal has never monopolized PDX Indymedia's newswire to the best of my recollection. There has always been a wide spectrum of news articles present."

You are trying to compare two different sites with different purposes. Infoshop allows corporate media news because the corporate media publishes articles that are of interest to Infoshop readers. Indymedia, on the other hand, is supposed to be a place for the promotion of independent and DIY media. The unofficial slogan being "become the media." As a person points out above, the posting of corporate content takes up scare resources. What's more, corporate reposts take up space on newswires and their existence skews the meme that Indymedia is trying to promote. Indymedia is trying to promote DIY media, not a free-for-all news sharing board.

While Infoshop News is different than Indymedia, we'd like to scrap the corporate content as much as possible. Many activists and leftists are still too lazy to contribute to alternative media on a mass basis, so it's a difficult process of finding competent writers and keeping them engaged. If our people could provide Infoshop News with similar stuff that we post from the corporate media, we'd gladly scrap the corporate stuff tomorrow (for the most part).

"You don't need any right-wing help to further marginalize Indymedia: this new editorial policy will do just fine. I'm sure both the corporate media and right-wing trolls applaud the decision. But hey, it's the editorial collective's decision. Fine. Just sad to see one of the last truly useful resources slip down the drain."

Your arguments are illogical. The new policy discourages corporate news and right wing trolls. WHy should right wing trolls have a right to say anything on Indymedia? Should leftists support the ability of right wingers to use our resources against us? How is it empowering to activists to have a community resource that allows cops and right wingers to post attacks on activists?

"BTW Chuck-O: really, really weak casting those indymedia contributors who disagree as right-wing infiltrators. I seem to recall you chastising several posters on Infoshop for resorting to such debate-killing tactics of smearing the messenger."

What I've said on Infoshop is totally different than what I've said here. My comments there were about anarchists who stupidly engage in sectarian obsessions with other anarchists. Arguments and disagreements are a normal part of human existence, but my criticism on Infoshop News was about a few individuals who have unhealthy obsessions with other anarchists or groups of anarchists. And they have problems with that "guilt by association" thing.

I stand by my comments here. I have no way of knowing who is behind the anonymous comments posted here. I read the comments and see the same reactionary arguments used against changes instituted around the Indymedia network. We know that trolls and right-wingers post shit in an effort to maintain a status quo that is favorable to them. There are people who have reasonable objections, but I people really underestimate the level to which the right wing is trying to undermine the Indymedia network. Sometimes I wonder if people who post to Indymedia have brains in two different universes. Lots of posts about stolen elections and right wingers, but very little outrage at right wingers who attack Indymedia. I juts don't get it. They don't let us post on their websites, so why should we let them post here? Because of some liberal idea that we should give our enemies the rope that they will use to hang us?

"Ironically, Infoshop was my next choice to contribute funds after PDX Indy. Guess I'll rethink that as well. In an age where funds and time to contribute to any worthy cause are so scarce, no one wants to waste their resources on ineffective activism."

Indymedia and Infoshop bring DIY radical media to thousands of people. If you really are somebody who supports independent media, it doesn't make sense to say stuff like this.

reply 02.Dec.2004 13:44

indy geek

"Closed minds will only lose out in the long run 02.Dec.2004 10:02
Hal E. Burton link

Noam Chomsky calls the Wall Street Journal "the place where capitalism occasionally tells the truth about itself." And I'll guarantee that his file cabinets are filled with "corporate" media clips. They can't lie to each other much when there's real money involved. Don't stereotype "corporate" media; when you limit your information, you limit your knowledge."



I'd like to point out some fallacies in your thinking.

Any reasonably informed, open minded person can understand the corporate agenda. I know it through and through. I know it is destroying the fabric of healthy life on this planet.

It is a distraction and indulgence at this point to spend my time reading about each little manifestation. Hell, I can just about predict them.

The truth about capitalism is known and understood. When that is the case, it is no longer meaningful to continue to read up about what is already known. The task at hand is then to do something about it.

Collecting information in ones mind for no other purpose than to collect information in ones mind is just another form of rampant consumerism. Allowing oneself to be tantalized by ad nauseum minutia about something already essentially understood is an escape from the difficult challenge of doing something about what one already knows.

There is only so much time in the day that a person has to do something useful. Spending it reading the WSJ for the OCCASSIONAL tidbit of truth is time wasted. If you do not understand the nature of the system, there are much better resources to inform yourself. And once you do understand it, then the real work becomes doing something about it.

It is the people who read the least corporate media who to my eye exhibit the greatest clarity.

One other point. Real knowledge comes from experience and doing, not from information which is divorced from daily life. Reading the WSJ will never make you a mature, sane, balanced individual.

some thoughts from Michigan 10.Dec.2004 13:14

mike / michigan IMC

If corporate media is defined as for-profit media, does this mean that pdx will ban repostings of articles from the for-profit (or at least, not non-profit), ethnic and identity-based press?

At Michigan IMC, we've benefited from the reposting of content from the Michigan Citizen (a Detroit African American newspaper), the Arab American News, the Forum and Link (a Dearborn, MI-based Arab American paper), and Between the Lines (the leading LGBT paper in our area). These papers sell ads, have paid staff, and are not 501 C3s (all traits that could be considered "corporate"). These papers also cover some of the most important activism that is happening in Michigan. I don't know if similar papers exist in pdx or not, but if they do, it seems to me that something would be lost if these sorts of papers are marked as "corporate" and banned.

just a thought,
mike


a response from portland 10.Dec.2004 13:30

indy volunteer

"If corporate media is defined as for-profit media"

It's not; see my response above:

 http://portland.indymedia.org/en/2004/12/304873.shtml#156341