Offering asides, recommended links, blogworthy quotations, and more, In Brief is the Northwest Progressive Institute's microblog of world, national, and local politics.

Tag Archives: Mass Media Ownership

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Big win for media diversity: The Chicago Sun-Times is wrenched away from a rival publisher

The Chicago Sun-Times will not fall into the hands of Tronc, the company that owns its crosstown rival, thanks an eleventh hour intervention by a group of white knight investors that includes the Chicago Federation of Labor. “When the big guy decided to eat the little guy, this group of people stood up and said, ‘No more,’” declared the group’s leader, businessman Edwin Eisendrath, at a press conference.

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Five years after phone hacking scandal, Sky agrees to £18.5bn takeover deal with Murdoch’s 21st Century Fox

Big media is always trying to get bigger. Rupert Murdoch and his son are making another attempt to gain control of British broadcaster Sky, formerly known as BSkyB. Sky is the United Kingdom’s largest digital subscription television company. NPI urges the British government to scuttle this deal.


Any time you hear media executives talking about synergies, throwing around the business-babble that always accompanies these rumors, you know it’s time grab your wallet and hang on tight. Big mergers like this inevitably mean higher prices for real people, to pay down the money borrowed to finance these deals and their golden parachutes. The deals are driven by Wall Street’s insatiable desire for short term growth at any cost. And just as AT&T’s recent purchase of DirecTV was quickly followed by price hikes, there’s every reason to expect this potential tie-up would cost internet users and TV viewers dearly too.

— Free Press’ Matt Wood: A multibillion dollar merger of AT&T and Time Warner would cost customers dearly

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Big media wants to get even bigger: AT&T is said to be in advanced merger talks with Time Warner

Bad news: Telco giant AT&T is trying to acquire Time Warner, with the apparent intent of creating a behemoth that would rival Comcast and Disney. Apparently the suits at Time Warner have not learned anything from the disastrous merger with AOL sixteen years ago. In 2000, AOL memorably bought Time Warner in what was one of the largest acquisitions in history. Time Warner eventually shed the money-losing AOL and spun it off into an independent company; it was subsequently purchased by Verizon. This rumored deal must not go through. Big media is already too big.

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UW had ‘Fight Club’ rule of secrecy about KPLU deal

“Emails and records show UW and KUOW officials worked to keep details secret about the Seattle public radio station’s intentions to buy its competitor KPLU until the day university regents approved the plan. PLU, meanwhile, insisted on not revealing that it initiated the deal,” The Seattle Times reports.

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Lacking all self-awareness, Fox now calling Obama obstructionist

The Fox Noise Channel does revionist history better than anyone else. Once an election is over, they can (and do) turn on a dime. If Republicans control an institution, they defend it; otherwise they attack it. The only branch of government now controlled at the federal level by Democrats is the presidency, so Fox is going all-out to make Obama the villain in every way possible.

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Verizon’s widely mocked tech news site is now completely dead

Verizon has pulled the plug on an ill-advised online news venture it created that was infused with fake content intended to promote the company’s views. Ars Technica reports on the life and death of SugarString.