....LMB: "Inside"....

March 16, 2003

A few info/opinion sources inside Iraq that will surely give us some alternative points of view in the weeks to come.

Back to Iraq 2.0- former AP and NY Daily News reporter Christopher Allbritton is working as an independent reporter in Iraq, and has created his own blog with which to report. Pretty good stuff.

[edit]

Actually, it looks like I was mistaken about that. Allbritton made a trip to northern Iraq this past summer (click here for some of his photos), but is currently in New York, trying to raise money for another trip to Iraq in early April. So technically, his site does not belong on this list because he is not in Iraq at this moment. But since he will be in a few weeks, I'll leave it up with this caveat.

[/edit]

IraqJournal.org- a team of media and peace activists prepare regular text, audio and video reports from inside Iraq. Started in October 2002, seems affilated with lefty radio program Democracy Now!

Iraq Peace Team Diaries- the Iraq Peace Team is a group of activists who are working to nonviolently oppose the U.S. invasion of Iraq. A member of the team seems to update their "diary" section every 7-10 days. They've been there since September 2002.

Where is Raed?- Raed is just another blogger, who happens to be an Iraqi living in Iraq. Don't know much else about the guy. As you might guess, he's a little pissed off about being bombed, about sanctions, about Western "human shields," Islamic fundamentalists, incompetent British reporters, etc. It's largely political, but it's got some photos, poems and personal stuff too. Of course the opinions of one dude from Iraq can't be seen as representative of those of the entire country, but his opinions are more representative of the country than, I don't know, ANYTHING THAT YOU WILL SEE IN THE AMERICAN PRESS.

[another edit]

I misunderstood the blog. The author is not named Raed, but Salam Pax (obviously a psuedonym, which if I'm not mistaken means "peace peace"). I'm not sure who Raed is or how they fit into this. Anyway.

[/edit]

If you know of any other first-hand sources inside Iraq, please comment or email me and I'll add them in. Thanks.

Posted by Jake at 10:52 PM | TrackBack (0)
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Thanks for the link to Back to Iraq 2.0.

Posted by: Catherine at March 18, 2003 01:13 AM
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Media News

November 16, 2004

Tales of Media Woe

Senate May Ram Copyright Bill- one of the most depressing stories of the day that didn't involve death or bombs. It's the music and movie industries' wet dream. It criminalizes peer-to-peer software makers, allows the government to file civil lawsuits on behalf of these media industries, and eliminates fair use. Fair use is the idea that I can use a snippet of a copyrighted work for educational, political, or satirical purposes, without getting permission from the copyright-holder first.

And most tellingly, the bill legalizes technology that would automatically skip over "obejctionable content" (i.e. sex and violence) in a DVD, but bans devices that would automatically skip over commericals. This is a blatant, blatant, blatant gift to the movie industry. Fuck the movie industry, fuck the music industry, fuck the Senate.

Music industry aims to send in radio cops- the recording industry says that you're not allowed to record songs off the radio, be it real radio or internet radio. And now they're working on preventing you from recording songs off internet radio through a mixture of law and technological repression (although I imagine their techno-fixes will get hacked pretty quickly).

The shocking truth about the FCC: Censorship by the tyranny of the few- blogger Jeff Jarvis discovers that the recent $1.2 million FCC fine against a sex scene in Fox's "Married By America" TV show was not levied because hundreds of people wrote the FCC and complained. It was not because 159 people wrote in and complained (which is the FCC's current rationale). No, thanks to Jarvis' FOIA request, we find that only 23 people (of the show's several million viewers) wrote in and complained. On top of that, he finds that 21 of those letters were just copy-and-paste email jobs that some people attached their names to. Jarvis then spins this a bit by saying that "only 3" people actually wrote letters to the FCC, which is misleading but technically true. So somewhere between 3 and 23 angry people can determine what you can't see on television. Good to know.

Reuters Union Considers Striking Over Layoffs- will a strike by such a major newswire service impact the rest of the world's media?

Pentagon Starts Work On War Internet- the US military is talking about the creation of a global, wireless, satellite-aided computer network for use in battle. I think I saw a movie about this once...

Conservative host returns to the air after week suspension for using racial slur- Houston radio talk show host (and somtime Rush Limbaugh substitute) Mark Belling referred to Mexican-Americans as "wetbacks" on his show. He was suspended for a couple of weeks, and then submitted a written apology for the racial slur to a local newspaper. But he seems to be using the slur and its surrounding controversy to boost his conservative cred with his listeners.

Stay Tuned for Nudes- Cleveland TV news anchor Sharon Reed aired a story about artist Spencer Tunick, who uses large numbers of naked volunteers in his installations and photographs. The news report will be unique in that it will not blur or black-out the usual naughty bits. The story will air late at night, when it's allegedly okay with the FCC if you broadcast "indecent" material. The author of this article doesn't seem to notice that Reed first claims that this report is a publicity stunt, but then claims it's a protest against FCC repression. I'd like to think it's the latter, but I'm not that much of a sucker.

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