Monday, July 30, 2012

Barbara Ehrenreich: Why Are Working People Invisible in the Mainstream Media? | Alternet

Barbara Ehrenreich: Why Are Working People Invisible in the Mainstream Media? | Alternet

 We need something like the Economic Hardship Reporting Project here in Canada too, for, in case you haven't noticed, the mainstream Canadian media has become increasingly inadequate if not  irrelevant in its coverage of just about everything,  a process that began long before corporate consolidation and the current cost cutting manoeuvres. Just witness, for example, how many stories have appeared in the mainstream media recently on weather extremes that fail to even mention climate change or global warming as a context.  That is failed reporting in my judgement.

And there is -  let's be honest -  no single mainstream Canadian media outlet - TV, print, on-line - that speaks with any fully accepted authority, and no columnist or pundit who is a must-read or must-see.  They all dance inside the official corporate and political space, never venturing beneath or around the system, and  they're dancing - no surprise -  to a neoliberal waltz.

In Canada, the only semi-professional alternatives we have to the mainstream are the Huffington Post, Ipolitics,The Tyee, The Dominion, and the blogs at the Council of Canadians and Centre for Policy Alternatives, though there are countless amateur blogs attempting to fill the gap left by the mainstream as well -  many of which are better written and more insightful than anything a professional might do.

A project like Economic Hardship Reporting here in Canada might encourage professionals to actually practice their profession - a potential option that many of them might soon want to exercise as staff everywhere, it would seem,  is being reduced. What's happening at Postmedia is the writing on the wall:  "mainstream print is dead and pay-walls drive readers away."

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