Democracy Forum 6/17/16

Host: Ann Luther, League of Women Voters of Maine    
Engineer: Amy Browne

Issue: Participatory Democracy

Program Topic: Press or Propaganda: Corporate Media, a Free Press, and the Future of Democracy

Key Discussion Points:
-Tension between corporate, profit-motivated ownership of mainstream media and the public interest mission served by journalism in an open democracy.
-What roles are old and new media playing in forming an educated electorate in 21st century America?
-The long-held belief in a liberal media bias has been challenged by the success of Fox News and the like. Is this kind of POV media a new phenomenon in American journalism? Which side is winning?
-What happens when the ultra-rich like Sheldon Adelson, Rupert Murdoch, and Jeffrey Bezos start buying up news outlets?
-Is this good for democracy? What can citizens do?

Guests:
Michael Franz, Associate Professor at Bowdoin College and co-director of the Wesleyan Media Project. mikemfranz.com/
John Christie, co-founder and senior editor for the Maine Center of Public Interest Reporting. pinetreewatchdog.org/about/

The all-volunteer team at the League of Women Voters – Downeast who plan and coordinate this series includes:
John Bradford
Linda Hoskins
Ann Luther
Marge May
Pam Person
Leah Taylor
Linda Washburn

FMI re League of Women Voters of Maine: www.lwvme.org

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