To Serve (and Cover) Man

Aliens? 

Corporations? 

Why quibble?

And why worry about history?

Those who defend the GOP/right wing assault on media and free speech defend media consolidation with an irrelevant ‘factoid’. Before ‘deregulation’, they say, there were only three huge networks –CBS, NBC, ABC. This may be true on the surface but misses the point that throughout the nation there were several thousand locally owned television and radio stations; all of them were required by the FCC to ‘serve local interests’. As a result, many radio stations in small and large ‘market’s maintained viable ‘News’ and/or ‘Public Affairs Departments’. These stations had a finger on the pulse of the listening community like few if any have today.

It was not until the late sixties that many ‘stations’ began to automate; it was not until Ronald Reagan attacked the Fairness Doctrine that locally-owned outlets were no longer required to provide ‘public affairs’ airtime to local groups. In other words, they were no longer required to be responsible to a ‘service’ area. Interestingly, the term ‘service’ area is no longer used, replaced recently with the the term: ‘coverage’. Ergo: you –as a person –are no longer ‘served’. You are ‘covered’!

Being served – in the Twilight Zone sense – might not be be palatable.

Of course, being covered – in the Comcast sense – is no more so, given that its intellectually equivalent to being covered in the grave sense.

Mubarak who?

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