Sunday, June 14, 2009

Mainstream Media FAIL

Many of us online folk are aware that the mainstream media has utterly failed to cover the Iranian people's uprising with consistent accounts after what all objective observers are calling a fraudulent and stolen election.  Online news sources, first person accounts, and streaming video on these uprisings have shown amazing political and social protests. 

We have also seen and read about mass arrests, violence, and repressive steps from the Iranian government such as cutting off power, turning off Internet servers, and shutting down cell phone service.  From what news has trickled out -- much from opposition candidates themselves -- we know that many protesters and especially students have been taken away to unknown places by police and so-called "intelligent services."

Anyone wonder if Dick Cheney is taking notes somewhere?

The unfortunate and sad truth of all of this is that the mainstream media has given us shockingly little in-depth coverage.  We have had to turn to social media in the form of Twitter, Friendfeed, Youtube, Twitpic, Flickr, and other sources while the news media in all its forms is giving us unbelievable levels of coverage of what appears to be the Jon and Kate Plus Eight divorce situation.

It is funny in this age of instant information that we know very little about an actual poltiical uprising.  And for the record, sorry but I have to say I don't care about Jon and Kate.  And I only feel sorry for the children who have been pimped out by parents who obviously decided years ago to not be functioning parents.  Yet, in the end... I DON'T CARE.

Here we have a situation where people want to change the direction of their government and that government begins to issue religious orders that it is acceptable to steal an election for God.  Sound familiar to anyone here in the United States?  Religious extremism and intolerance remains extremism and intolerance.

Alas, we are thankful for the social media and Internet-based bravery of so many in Iran who worked so hard to bring us information even at the risk of arrest or worse.  It feels very much like a special and frightening moment when someone is sending pictures and then in their next missive they note that they have to stop because the police "are going room to room searching for satellite dishes."

So, to the mainstream media: You failed.  Take a lesson from this and reconsider your myopia against foreign events and work to improve your coverage.  To the Internet and social media networks: Good work on this one but you will have to work very hard to create consistent credible and reliable sources of information.  But so far, nice effort.  Thank you for the pictures, accounts, and information.  I'll be reading, listening, and watching.

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