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Re: [IFWP] Re: Theories on media bias

At 07:12 PM 8/16/99 , Kerry  Miller wrote:
>> Complexity, confusion, etc. can't possibly
>> explain the media blackout on ICANN!
>Maybe not, but if I were an editor, simplistic political concepts, 
>such as identifying concern for anything but neoliberal economics 
>as Socialism, would rather put me off publishing your piece.  Good 
>judgement is a fine line between complication and reductionism, 
>but its always there if you look. 

Hi Kerry,

As reported by Ronda, editors will often
ask writers to change parts of their story.  
If you or an editor objected to my reference 
to Socialism, it could easily be removed.

But frankly, this is not about whether a few 
media outlets choose to publish my summary.  
This is about a media blackout of an entire 
perspective in the ICANN debate.

When you look at all of the coverage provided 
to ICANN over the last couple of weeks, you will 
find that virtually all of the stories have been 
framed as a fight between ICANN's mission to bring 
competition to the name space, and NSI's desire to 
hold on to their monopoly (see below).

That's like covering the trees in a forest, 
but never talking about the forest.

The really important issues are those that 
transcend the Network Solutions monopoly -- 
those that will remain after the NSI monopoly 
is devolved.

Framing the story as above gives the casual 
reader a mistaken impression of the debate 
that we are all actively involved in.  To 
find out more about framing, please see 

Here are some excerpts:

A frame is the central organizing idea for making sense of relevant events
and suggesting what is at issue.  Since electoral accountability is the
foundation of representative democracy, the public must be able to
establish who is responsible for social problems.  Yet the news media
systematically filter the issues and deflect blame from the establishment
by framing the news as "only a passing parade of specific events, a
`context of no context.'  This "prevents the public from cumulating the
evidence toward any logical, ultimate consequence."

The power of the press in America is a primordial one. It sets the agenda
of public discussion; and this sweeping political power is unrestrained by
any law. It determines what people will talk and think about - an authority
that in other nations is reserved for tyrants, priests, parties and mandarins.

First . . . objectivity in journalism is biased in favor of the status quo;
it is inherently conservative to the extent that it encourages reporters to
rely on what sociologist Alvin Gouldner so appropriately describes as the
`managers of the status quo' - the prominent and the elite. Second,
objective reporting is biased against independent thinking; it emasculates
the intellect by treating it as a disinterested spectator. Finally,
objective reporting is biased against the very idea of responsibility; the
day's news is viewed as something journalists are compelled to report, not
something they are responsible for creating. . . . What objectivity has
brought about, in short, is a disregard for the consequences of newsmaking.

In closing . . .

I find it ironic that the more noise I make 
about the blackout, the more the press tries 
to justify their silence! 

What started out as some private exchanges
with reporters, has now escalated to some
private exchanges with their editors.  Next,
I fully expect to hear from their publishers ;-)

If these media outlets were sincere, however,
they would simply publish "the other perspectives."
But alas, when all is said and done, their coverage 
has not changed.  


Jay Fenello
President, Iperdome, Inc.    404-943-0524
What's your .per(sm)?   http://www.iperdome.com 

"All truth passes through three stages.  First, it is 
ridiculed, second it is violently opposed, and third, 
it is accepted as self-evident." (Arthur Schopenhauer)

P.S.  Here's a list of every story written since the 
Congressional Committee on Oversight and Investigations 
held their first hearing (as reported by Yahoo):

RealNames Sells MP Prefix To MP3.com - TechWeb (08/17/99)
Aussie Tech Firm Routs Cybersquatter - The Industry Standard (08/16/99)
Jury is still out on private-sector Net authority - San Jose Mercury News
Academics Propose Takeover of .edu Domain - InternetNews (08/12/99)
Domain Price War Begins - InternetNews (08/12/99)
A Very Wrong Number - The Industry Standard (08/12/99)
ICANN Names Seven New Registrars - InternetNews (08/11/99)
No more deals behind closed doors - EU tells NSI - The Register (08/11/99)
AOL Goes Live As Internet Registrar - AFP (08/10/99)
AOL does domains--finally - News.com (08/10/99)
ICANN controversy extends to White House - InfoWorld (08/09/99)
More Delays for Net Name Registrars - The Industry Standard (08/09/99)
Domain Name Deadline Delayed for Third Time - InternetNews (08/09/99)
Domain Name Registrar Group Repeats Growth - ECommerce Times (08/09/99)
Internet Address Bidding High - AP (08/09/99)
U.S. Again Delays Internet Addresses Plan - NY Times (registration req'd)
Senate Moves to Roust Cybersquatters - The Industry Standard (08/06/99)
Senate passes 'cyber-squatting' bill - Yahoo! News/ZDNet (08/06/99)
U.S. Senate passes bill to outlaw "cybersquatting" - Yahoo! Finance/Reuters
Senate OKs Cybersquatting Bill - Wired News (08/06/99)
Commerce Opens Testbed To All Accredited Registrars - Update - AFP (08/06/99)
ICANN Testbed To Be Extended, Again - Sources - AFP (08/06/99)
'Hey Orrin, Dot Com This' - Wired News (08/06/99)
Domain system's test phase could be extended - News.com (08/06/99)
ICANN Probe Aims at White House - Wired News (08/06/99)
Senate OKs Anti-Cybersquatting Bill - AP (08/05/99)
Bidders High on Drugs.com? - Wired News (08/05/99)
Bliley Accuses ICANN of Collusion With DOJ - InternetNews (08/05/99)
Drugs.com Domain Name Bidding War Heats Up - AFP (08/05/99)
Post Office Barred from .us? - Wired News (08/05/99)
Bids May Hit $1M for Domain Name - AP (08/05/99)
Dyson Denies Collusion with DOJ - Wired News (08/04/99)
Internet Address System May Finally Be Opened Up - NY Times (registration
req'd) (08/03/99)
Senate ponders protecting trademarks from \"cybersquatters\" - News.com

ICANN Downplays Talks With DoJ - The Industry Standard (08/02/99)
Cyber-Squatting Bill Ready for Full Senate Vote - ECommerce Times (07/30/99)
Bliley Investigates ICANN-DOJ Backroom Deal - Yahoo! News/ZDNet (07/30/99)
House Judiciary Checks Out Cyber-Squatting - ECommerce Times (07/29/99)
Domain name divorce? - MSNBC (07/29/99)
Hearing Turns Into Debate on Obscene Internet Names - NY Times
(registration req'd) (07/29/99)
Commerce to NSI: Give It Up - Wired News (07/26/99)
NSI Preps Dot Com Directory - TechWeb (07/26/99)
A Planned Internet Yellow Pages Draws Federal Scrutiny - NY Times
(registration req'd) (07/26/99)
Net Governance Will Take Time To Get Right - TechWeb (07/23/99)
ICANN Finds Friends at Congressional Hearing - ECommerce Times (07/23/99)
Commerce Dept. Threatens NSI - Inter@ctive Week (07/23/99)
Network Solutions Finds Itself on the Defensive at Hearing - Washington
Post (07/23/99)
Internet Address Company Grilled in Congress - NY Times (registration
req'd) (07/23/99)
Network Solutions' 2nd-Quarter Profit Soars - Washington Post (07/23/99)
Domain name registrar slammed - MSNBC (07/22/99)
House subcommittee gives NSI a grilling - News.com (07/22/99)
Domain Players Face the Music - Wired News (07/22/99)
No Dinero, No Domain - Wired News (07/22/99)
Masters of Internet Domains Go to War - Washington Post (07/22/99)