For Immediate Release: Across the Nation, Media Justice Advocates Applaud Senate’s Vote in Favor of Net Neutrality

Contact: Brandi Collins Center for Media Justice 510.698.3800 x409 brandi@centerformediajustice.org

November 10, 2011– The Media Action Grassroots Network (MAG-Net) is pleased the Senate voted (46-52) to reject a resolution (S.J. Res. 6) to repeal the net neutrality rules put in place earlier this year by the Federal Communications Commission (FCC). DeAnne Cuellar, Executive Director of the Media Justice League calls the partisan resolution “a sneak attack on Internet freedoms sponsored by Sen. Kay Hutchison [R-TX], and spearheaded by industry-funded members of Congress.”  If passed, the resolution, would’ve handed corporations like AT&T, Comcast, and Verizon unrestricted power and control over the Internet. 

“As evidenced by the close vote, there is much work to be done across the country to convince our elected officials that we do not need corporate gatekeepers deciding which websites will and will not work,” said Andrea Quijada, Executive Director of the Media Literacy Project in New Mexico. “Small businesses deserve the right to market their goods and services at the same speed and reach as any multi-national corporation. Small businesses and large corporations use the same interstate highways and abide by the same motor vehicle laws to get their goods to and from their places of business. The information highway should be no different.”

“Today’s vote is an important recognition of the role the Internet performs in people’s daily lives. It is no longer a luxury; it is a utility that must be regulated accordingly,” said Steven Renderos, Media Justice Program Director at Main Street Project in Minnesota.  An open Internet is critical to America’s economic growth and to the ability of people – especially communities of color, rural Americans and struggling workers – to access the education and employment opportunities necessary to rebuild and strengthen our communities and support our families.

“We’re extremely pleased that the Senate has voted to allow the FCC to carry out it’s work – which is to put people before profits and keep the Internet open and free from discrimination,” said amalia deloney, Media Policy Field Director for the Center for Media Justice.  “Maintaining an open Internet ensures that our communities have access to the full creative potential of this important communications system and more importantly, allows us to use this important tool to organize around critical justice issues and strengthen the economic well being of our families and communities.”

Without FCC guidelines in place, giant conglomerates can limit access and increase prices so high that independent voices and diverse perspectives are blocked out. Members of rural, Native, low income and ethnically diverse communities will have even more challenges starting businesses and sharing content that is relevant to their own communities. Open Internet rules create the opportunity for communities of color to have fair access to this essential tool.  

MAG-Net moves forward in our fight for media justice and net neutrality.  We will continue to work with Congress and the Federal Communications Commission as they continue efforts to preserve Internet freedom for all the voices of our country. For more information about MAG-Net and our work, please visit www.mag-net.org or call Betty Yu, National Organizer, at 510-698-3800 x404. 

The Media Action Grassroots Network (MAG-Net) is a local-to-local advocacy network of grassroots community organizations working together for media change to end poverty, eliminate racism, and ensure human rights.  With over 100 member groups nationwide, regional chapters, an online action network, a media justice learning community, and collaborative campaigns- MAG-Net is advancing an exciting new vision for media justice.

3,380 Texans stand to lose their jobs, STOP the At&t/T-Mobile merger

All month we are taking action against the AT&T/T-Mobile merger with Media Action Grassroots Network, Free Press, and the Consumers Union. As a network we released Mo Mergers, Mo Problems, filed a petition with the DOJ and FCC and launched an online action urging people to contact their Congressional representatives.


You can support our month of action in the following ways:

1 - Change your Twitter/FB Profile Pic our campaign avatar
2 - Put a ‘Stop the Take Over Web' badge on your organization's website
3 - Print out a ‘Stop the Takeover' sign and hang it in your window
4 - Send a letter to the editor of your favorite publication

And, as always helps tweet, tweet, and tweet using the hashtages - #attmobile #mediajustice #SATX

The proposed AT&T takeover—A real jobs and democracy killer!

Sign our petition telling the FCC and DOJ to block this takeover


If AT&T takes over T-Mobile, it will be a disaster for all mobile phone users — especially people of color and low-income communities in rural and urban areas. The takeover will stifle information, choice and innovation, and lead to higher prices and fewer jobs nationwide.  Our communities cannot afford higher prices and fewer choices. We need the FCC and DOJ to block this takeover!  The loss of a low cost wireless carrier like T-Mobile will limit affordable mobile broadband access, threaten the openness of the mobile Internet and stifle competition in the broadband market. Our communities cannot afford these outcomes!

We, the undersigned individuals, demand a complete a thorough review of AT&T’s proposed acquisition of T-Mobile. We believe that such a review will reveal the disproportionate negative impact that this merger will have on our communities. We need the FCC and DOJ to block this takeover! 

The Facts:

A threat to low-income and communities of color 

Broadband is a basic service, and communities of color and low-income consumers are more likely to rely exclusively on mobile connections for access to the Internet. Price is often cited as one of the most important factors that limit broadband adoption, and T-Mobile offers service plans that have lower price points than AT&T. The elimination of T-Mobile as a service option could mean that many of our friends and family are faced with the choice of paying more for mobile broadband service or giving up the service completely. This change could undo the limited progress that we have made in bridging the digital divide. 

A threat to artists 

AT&T opposed any mobile Network Neutrality requirements, and it has a history of denying its customers access to the applications that they want. For example, AT&T has blocked both Google Voice and Slingbox applications in the past. Yet, the free flow of ideas, creativity, information, and entrepreneurship is essential to our democracy and economy—especially for artists. With increased consolidation, AT&T will have fewer incentives to maintain mobile broadband as an open platform and will be able to further restrict the choice of devices and applications that individuals can use with their mobile connections. 

A threat to underserved rural and urban communities 

The FCC’s competition strategy for broadband relies on mobile connections as the “third pipe” that will provide much needed competition in the broadband market. If the merger goes through, just two companies— AT&T and Verizon—would control 70 to 80 percent of the wireless market. A consolidated mobile market will not provide the competition we need to bring U.S. prices in line with those in other countries, where people pay less for more. AT&T should take the $39 billion it wants to spend on T-Mobile and instead improve its own service and networks, not eliminate a competitor that offers lower-priced service plans.

Sign the petition NOW!

Allied Media Conference 2011: From Shaharazad to Hit Girl

Turning the notion of violence begetting violence on its head, Shaharazad emerges as the unlikely shero of the fantastical Thousand and One Nights. Shaharazad, as well as the character Hit Girl, of Kick Ass fame, serve as symbols of what females can achieve when they set out to defy patriarchal norms.

We will look at memorable characters that occupy different places on the feminist Sheroes’ timeline, from classic literature’s Thousand and One Nights to 2011’s Hannah. Different female characters have served as universal types that reflect the reality of women in that time and place as well as call into question how women and men perpetuate damaging stereotypes. Sheroes have employed techniques and knowledge that fall outside the patriarchal arsenal of brute force and appropriation; these seminal female characters have shown us a better way to be and a better way to do. Website presentations, and audience-centric activities will galvanize audience- driven conversations about the issues at hand.

Participants will leave the sessions having created figures to address the timeless issue of feminist identity in a society wherein internal and external conflicts are pervasive.

MJ Challenge: Today is World Press Freedom Day, join the Twitter chat

We will be having a conversation all day about the potential, risks and challenges that we face on exercising our right to communicate. We will also focus on women’s voices and experiences and how we can collectively work to make sure women’s voices, women media makers and women who want to get involved in the media policy process are respected.


Please share these action with your network, if you have any questions or comments about this campaign, please contact meraszendro@gmail.com.

Week Long Multimedia Workshops

The Knight Digital Media Center at UC Berkeley is offering free week- long training workshops in multimedia reporting, social media/web 2.0 skills, databases and data visualizations and tools for launching and operating independent news sites. The workshops combine intense hands-on training in software applications and digital equipment with presentations and discussions about developing digital media strategies to effectively use the tools. There is no charge for attending the workshops, and hotel accommodations and meals are provided for free. The workshops run from December through June.

More details and the online application form are here:

http://multimedia.journalism.berkeley.edu/workshops/ http://multimedia.journalism.berkeley.edu/workshops/faq/