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But They Control 0%... (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38343116)

...of First Posts!

Re:But They Control 0%... (5, Funny)

masternerdguy (2468142) | more than 2 years ago | (#38344098)

Actually they can. They can have mandatory prescreening of all comments and prevent the first post from being posted.

"Cahoots", not "cohorts" (5, Insightful)

tomhudson (43916) | more than 2 years ago | (#38343126)

and that these companies are in cohorts to control our viewing

... too bad they're not in cahoots to help improve the use of the English language.

Re:"Cahoots", not "cohorts" (4, Funny)

Helpadingoatemybaby (629248) | more than 2 years ago | (#38343304)

You don't understand -- the companies are in cohorts which makes sense in context of "the fugal dad" -- clearly a reference to a father playing the flugelhorn with his cohorts. It's very high-level stuff here. When slashdot hires editors someday the puns will be even more brilliant.

Re:"Cahoots", not "cohorts" (1)

ackthpt (218170) | more than 2 years ago | (#38343986)

and that these companies are in cohorts to control our viewing

... too bad they're not in cahoots to help improve the use of the English language.

Moot point when you don't even watch TV because it's so awful.

The shame is, with the merger between XM and Sirius, the satellite radio is gravitating toward utter and complete awfulness, too.

Small wonder big media, via the representatives they own in Washington continue to wage war against public broadcasting. Not satisfied with 90% of the market, they want that last morsel, too.

Re:"Cahoots", not "cohorts" (1, Interesting)

Curunir_wolf (588405) | more than 2 years ago | (#38344296)

Small wonder big media, via the representatives they own in Washington continue to wage war against public broadcasting. Not satisfied with 90% of the market, they want that last morsel, too.

Not sure why they would care. NPR is compromised and caters to their corporate sponsors just as much as the rest of the main stream media. They've even started inserting ads in the middle of their stories, just like the other stations. The only real difference is that the Federal government is also a sponsor, so they have to cater to them, too.

No he doesn't (4, Informative)

esocid (946821) | more than 2 years ago | (#38343134)

He disputes that there is some big agenda. He admits that a few companies have consolidated almost all media outlets, but like most people, doesn't think there's some agenda to pour out crappy media. Those companies do it just fine independently.

Re:No he doesn't (5, Insightful)

mcgrew (92797) | more than 2 years ago | (#38343260)

Indeed. There's no agenda to put out crappy media, but the vast consolidation gives them an oligopoly. With only five competetitors, and all of them producing dreck, there's no need to produce anything BUT dreck.

In the end it'll bite them in the ass; the RIAA companies are already obsolete, and as the price of video equipment comes down and the quality goes up, the same will happen to the movie/TV industry.

Meanwhile, has anybody noticed how more pervasive advertising is than it was before all the consolidation? Three minutes of content followed by four minutes of commercials. It's insane and obscene. I've never seen as much advertising in my whole life as I have in the last ten years. And these people complain they can't make any money? Gomme a break!

This is why (2, Interesting)

arcite (661011) | more than 2 years ago | (#38343420)

I refuse to watch TV channels with commercials.

Re:This is why (2)

BlackSnake112 (912158) | more than 2 years ago | (#38344060)

Which is why I DVR the TV shows I like and watch them later while skipping the commercials. One hour TV shows are like 40 minutes (and getting shorter) now. I would add in commercial skip, but it messes up sometimes. I"ll edit the commercials out for the shows I want to keep.

Re:No he doesn't (5, Insightful)

tepples (727027) | more than 2 years ago | (#38343454)

In the end it'll bite them in the ass; the RIAA companies are already obsolete

For one thing, notable record labels provide promotion on commercial FM radio to reach people without smartphones capable of using Internet radio. Not every town has a college radio station that plays all genres. For another thing, even if the RIAA is obsolete, that doesn't mean NMPA, Harry Fox, ASCAP, BMI, and other trade associations of music publishers are obsolete.

as the price of video equipment comes down and the quality goes up, the same will happen to the movie/TV industry.

Even with the price of HDTV cameras plummeting, I don't see the price of competent writing, directing, acting, sets, and the like plummeting. Furthermore, a movie needs a soundtrack, and licensing diegetic music for use in movies set after 1922 can exceed and has exceeded (e.g. Clerks) the rest of the cost of the film put together.

Re:No he doesn't (4, Insightful)

Captain Splendid (673276) | more than 2 years ago | (#38343520)

I don't see the price of competent writing, directing, acting, sets, and the like plummeting.

Robert Rodriguez, Shane Carruth and hundreds of others would like to have a word with you.

Re:No he doesn't (1, Offtopic)

niko9 (315647) | more than 2 years ago | (#38344304)

I don't see the price of competent writing, directing, acting, sets, and the like plummeting.

Robert Rodriguez, Shane Carruth and hundreds of others would like to have a word with you.

The same Robert Rodriguez who had sumbit to medical research studies to come up with funding for his first film?

Link: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Robert_Rodriguez#Career [wikipedia.org]

Link: http://www.google.com/search?hl=en&safe=off&client=iceweasel-a&rls=org.mozilla:en-US:unofficial&sa=X&ei=2zPmTs_kMMT00gGT98X9BQ&ved=0CDAQvwUoAQ&q=robert+rodriguez+medical+research+studies&spell=1&biw=1320&bih=696 [google.com]

Re:No he doesn't (4, Informative)

Lumpy (12016) | more than 2 years ago | (#38343884)

"Even with the price of HDTV cameras plummeting, I don't see the price of competent writing, directing, acting, sets, and the like plummeting. "

I do. Actors that get $2.2mill per movie are going away. I see a LOT of indie films that are better than hollywood flicks made for far less and the actors not getting paid obscene amounts of money.

Padre Nuestro was made with cheap acting and cheap writing and directing.
Brokeback Mountain was made with cheap acting and cheap writing and directing.
Requiem for a Dream, Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind, etc... all for examples of RECENT films made without paying insane money to writes, directors and Actors.

In fact many of the Best films in history were low budget and not outrageous cost.

In fact Robert Rodriguez makes some of the absolute best films ever for less than the catering bill for many of the Hollywood "block busters"

Re:No he doesn't (1)

tepples (727027) | more than 2 years ago | (#38343998)

I see a LOT of indie films that are better than hollywood flicks

Who is going to get them shown in theaters or otherwise promote them in the United States other than the big six MPAA studios?

Requiem for a Dream

You're right: Lionsgate isn't in the MPAA. Yet.

Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind

Distributed by Focus, part of NBCUniversal, part of the MPAA.

Re:No he doesn't (1)

mcgrew (92797) | more than 2 years ago | (#38343990)

For one thing, notable record labels provide promotion on commercial FM radio to reach people without smartphones capable of using Internet radio.

I don't have a smartphone, but I have two computers, each capable of listening to any internet station out there. My 80 year old dad is one of a very few people I know without a computer. I don't know anyone who has a smartphone and no computer.

Not every town has a college radio station that plays all genres.

No, but almost all of those stations stream over the internet. My favorite is WQNA [wqna.org] , you can have either an AAC or MP3 stream from them. Jazz, rock, blues, ska, raggae, punk, hardcore, even belly dancing music (Wednesday nights).

Even with the price of HDTV cameras plummeting, I don't see the price of competent writing, directing, acting, sets, and the like plummeting.

Have you seen Star Wreck: In the Pirkinning? funny as hell, far better acting, writing, and directing than any Hollywood B movie, and it cost them a couple thousand bucks for a feature length movie.

Furthermore, a movie needs a soundtrack, and licensing diegetic music for use in movies set after 1922 can exceed and has exceeded (e.g. Clerks) the rest of the cost of the film put together.

All it takes is one talented musician with a synthesizer to produce a sound track; writing music isn't hard. There are thousands upon thousands of such talented people mostly playing in bars. There is no shortage of people with any talent you need.

What you don't need is multi-million dollar actors and directors and musicians. Actors, directors, and musicians are a dime a dozen these days.

Re:No he doesn't (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38343524)

the RIAA companies are already obsolete

Slight hyperbole? They're growing each year, the money they pull in is almost $300bn/year. That's hardly obsolete. I'm sure almost all companies around the world would love to be considered obsolete with almost 1/3 trillion dollars, and rising, coming in each year.

Re:No he doesn't (5, Interesting)

vlm (69642) | more than 2 years ago | (#38343540)

With only five competetitors, and all of them producing dreck, there's no need to produce anything BUT dreck.

You make it sound as bad as domestic car companies. Or banks. Or fast food "restaurants". Hmm. I think we're on to a pattern here...

Re:No he doesn't (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38344264)

Though banks are easy to go to credit unions as the competition. Going your direction, Corporations are exclusively profit-driven (by law) and are all will cause this situation if they can.

Re:No he doesn't (1)

Hatta (162192) | more than 2 years ago | (#38343554)

Meanwhile, has anybody noticed how more pervasive advertising is than it was before all the consolidation?

That would be a great chart. Number of media companies vs advertising time per hour.

Re:No he doesn't (3, Interesting)

Ihmhi (1206036) | more than 2 years ago | (#38343566)

I know, I'm very happy to be in my mid-twenties during the age where the Internet is really exploding and realizing its power. There's are some *fantastic* people who create entertainment on their own and it comes out way better and more interesting than a lot of the crap on the telly. freddiew [youtube.com] and Monty Oum [deviantart.com] come to mind as a couple of standout examples. Then there's there's loads of fun projects like SMBC Theater [smbc-theater.com] and 5 second films [5secondfilms.com] . There's even more "Mainstream" stuff (Internet-wise) like CrackedTV, CollegeHumor, and FunnyOrDie making original videos. I think in 5 years we'll really be at the point where the stuff on the Internet is as good as (if not more interesting than) the stuff on television.

The only barrier that needs to be broken is the duration of videos. Most of these places will put out 1-10 minutes of content a week. There's very little cohesive shows (like sitcoms or dramas) that I've found that can consistantly produce 20+ 22-minute episodes once a year.

Last recommendation: Next Time on Lonny [youtube.com] .

If anyone else knows of any good shows, dramas, whatever hosted online (I'm particularly fond of stuff like Penny Arcade Television as well), please post them here in a reply. I'd love to check out some new stuff. I've almost entirely phased television out of my life.

Re:No he doesn't (2)

nine-times (778537) | more than 2 years ago | (#38343576)

there's no need to produce anything BUT dreck.

Worse, there's no *motivation* to produce anything but dreck. When you have a small number of competitors, then everyone is looking for the lowest common denominator, and nobody is really looking for the niche.

On the other hand, there is some real non-dreck out there. There are shows like "Breaking Bad" and "Louie", which are, in my opinion, amazing. God only knows how "Louie" got on the air.

Re:No he doesn't (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38343652)

Next thing you know, they'll have TV shows with names like "General Electric Theater" or "Goodyear Television Playhouse" or "The Alcoa Hour"

Re:No he doesn't (1)

Lumpy (12016) | more than 2 years ago | (#38343756)

"and as the price of video equipment comes down and the quality goes up, the same will happen to the movie/TV industry."

I suggest you look up the Tv show "Pioneer One" Oh hell, here.... http://vodo.net/pioneerone [vodo.net] for you lazy people.

Also explore what else is there on Vodo.net.

It's already happening, Hollywierd is doomed.

Re:No he doesn't (1)

mapkinase (958129) | more than 2 years ago | (#38344124)

What advertisement? The only advertisement I see nowadays is the one modded up to the top of the front pages of social networks, under the title "cool advertisement" or something like that.

Thank you, ADP and NS.

Re:No he doesn't (1)

Archangel Michael (180766) | more than 2 years ago | (#38343266)

Well, many of us don't like the MSM, and are now getting our news raw and unfiltered. I don't care that the MSM controls 90% of the content, because it is the same old crappy content they've always controlled. With the internet, there is a whole new world of content waiting to be discovered. Singers that can sing without autotune, bands that can play instruments, actors that can actually change personality to suit the role, and artists that can create lasting works of beauty, with subtle messages on the human condition, and chefs that can make a gourmet meal out of twinkies and a can of beans.

The 90% of the people can't really appreciate the finer nuanced artistic works, let them have the MSM.

Trumped-up charges of plagiarism (4, Interesting)

tepples (727027) | more than 2 years ago | (#38343616)

Well, many of us don't like the MSM, and are now getting our news raw and unfiltered.

Provided they have the time to sit in front of a computer desk. A lot of people have trouble giving up the MSM for video because they don't want to buy another PC for the HDTV or worse yet both buy a PC and replace the SDTV in the living room with an HDTV. Other people have trouble giving up the MSM for music because only smartphones can play Internet radio in the car or on the bus, and they aren't willing to pay for smartphone service.

I don't care that the MSM controls 90% of the content, because it is the same old crappy content they've always controlled. With the internet, there is a whole new world of content waiting to be discovered.

Until the MSM starts suing Internet artists on trumped-up charges of plagiarism.

The 90% of the people can't really appreciate the finer nuanced artistic works, let them have the MSM.

Are you sure that we'd want that? If 90 percent have the MSM, then 90 percent are letting the MSM tell them for whom to vote [pineight.com] and on which issues to choose a candidate. For example, which MSM source has thoroughly covered opposition to the Stop Online Piracy Act?

Re:Trumped-up charges of plagiarism (1)

Lumpy (12016) | more than 2 years ago | (#38343938)

"....MSM for video because they don't want to buy another PC for the HDTV..... "

Then they are stupid looking at buying a PC, a $99.00 roku box solves this. IF you are so poor that you balk at buying a $99.00 device but cling to your $130 a month cable TV bill, you are mentally challenged...

Hell even 6 months of CableTV will buy you a super high power HTPC that looks like a high end piece of stereo gear.

Re:No he doesn't (1)

dzfoo (772245) | more than 2 years ago | (#38343798)

Is the MSM related to the FSM?

Re:No he doesn't (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38343866)

Since there's a finite number of them and they operate the state, I'd say yeah, they're related to the Finite State Machine ;)

Re:No he doesn't (4, Insightful)

LWATCDR (28044) | more than 2 years ago | (#38343328)

Pretty much. They all play and or show what is most profitable. Thing is that what is most profitable is usually not what is best.
The other issue are the cable companies. I live in a town of over 200,000 people. We can got only a single network OTA we get about 10 other stations that are religious and or none english but only one network. The reason is that the cable companies are pulling in the network stations from bigger markets near by. Before cable the other stations in my area would have been snapped up to be affiliates. Now the networks see no reason to do that. They get just as many viewers but from fewer stations.
It isn't some great evil plot other than a plot to make as much money as possible.

Re:No he doesn't (1)

the eric conspiracy (20178) | more than 2 years ago | (#38343594)

I am 60 years old so I grew up in the era of there being only 3 TV channels and a educational TV station showing classroom style programming. The message of consumerism was far stronger and less diluted then than it is now.

This was far less diverse than what is available today, and yet when the time came we were ready to rise up in protest.

I really don't see an issue with the media today. The breath of opinion and education available is staggering in comparison to what is was.

Re:No he doesn't (5, Insightful)

betterunixthanunix (980855) | more than 2 years ago | (#38343886)

The message of consumerism was far stronger and less diluted then than it is now.

Perhaps you should take a look at what your grandkids and their friends are watching. I have trouble believing that you could push the consumerism message much stronger than this crap:

  • http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/MTV
  • http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gossip_girl
  • http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sex_and_the_city
  • http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/ESPN (no, really, this is not just about sports)

Today's methods of advertising and convincing people to buy things are less overt than they were in the 1950s, 60s, and 70s, but they are far more effective. Popular TV shows, and especially shows whose target audience is the 13-24 age, are designed to cultivate a desire to buy things -- clothes, soft drinks, video games, fast food, music, etc. The whole point of MTV, from its inception, was to be a 24/7 advertisement to teenagers, and there has been an effort to maximize the amount of advertising that can be squeezed into every minute.

Today's message is this: buy things. Period. You are not supposed to be a participant in a capitalist system, exchanging your skills and goods for some other person's, you are just supposed to buy things that other people made.

Re:No he doesn't (1)

AddictedToCaffine (713582) | more than 2 years ago | (#38344026)

"The whole point of MTV, from its inception, was to be a 24/7 advertisement to teenagers"

My recollection is that MTV didn't even have commercials when it first started. But otherwise your point is valid. It didn't take them long to change their tune. ba-DUM-bump.

Re:No he doesn't (1)

betterunixthanunix (980855) | more than 2 years ago | (#38344116)

My recollection is that MTV didn't even have commercials when it first started

What do you think music videos are? The point of MTV was to advertise music to teenagers, and they gradually became a platform for advertising everything else.

Re:No he doesn't (1)

Nadaka (224565) | more than 2 years ago | (#38344228)

And unfortunately now there is now no more music on MTV.

Re:No he doesn't (1)

betterunixthanunix (980855) | more than 2 years ago | (#38343502)

doesn't think there's some agenda to pour out crappy media

Crappy media is secondary to the real agenda: convincing everyone that they should keep buying things. That is why none of the big entertainment companies* were willing to advertise this:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Buy_Nothing_Day [wikipedia.org]

* Feel free to insert remarks about news being a form of entertainment, Mr. Murdoch.

Re:No he doesn't (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38343776)

Crappy media is secondary to the real agenda: convincing everyone that they should keep buying things. That is why none of the big entertainment companies* were willing to advertise this:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Buy_Nothing_Day

The real reason no one will advertise this is because over half of the population is women.

Re:No he doesn't (1)

bws111 (1216812) | more than 2 years ago | (#38344100)

You mean the 'big entertainment companies', whose income is derived either from directly selling their own products, or by selling advertising for other products, don't support 'Buy nothing day'? Shocking!!! What's next? Oil companies not supporting 'don't drive week' or labor unions not supporting 'exploit your workers month'?

Re:No he doesn't (5, Interesting)

eclectus (209883) | more than 2 years ago | (#38343750)

The quote from Jobs pretty much sums it up well.

"When you're young, you look at television and think, There's a conspiracy. The networks have conspired to dumb us down. But when you get a little older, you realize that's not true. The networks are in business to give people exactly what they want. That's a far more depressing thought. Conspiracy is optimistic! You can shoot the bastards! We can have a revolution! But the networks are really in business to give people what they want. It's the truth." - Steve Jobs, Interview in WIRED magazine (February 1996)

Re:No he doesn't (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38344192)

Not surprising that Jobs said that, given that Apple gives their customer base what they want (that is, shiny fashionable crap).

Re:No he doesn't (1)

Stoopiduk (1593855) | more than 2 years ago | (#38344302)

I'd be quite confident at guessing your age from that reply.

Re:No he doesn't (2)

mapkinase (958129) | more than 2 years ago | (#38344084)

Also, I challenge everybody to take 6 top companies in any industry and see how much of the market they control.

Nice Editing (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38343138)

So I clicked on the Fugal Dad [sic] link, and instead of an article on mega media controlling content, I got an obvious Dell advertisement disguised as a poorly written blog post. Was this some sort of meta humor?

LMFTFY (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38343144)

...such claims by the Frugal Dad [frugaldad.com] ...

Changelog:
- recurring "the" removed
- link corrected
- spelled "Frugal" correctly.

FOR WORKERS REVOLUTION! (1)

For a Free Internet (1594621) | more than 2 years ago | (#38343168)

Smash imperialism with international socialist revolution!

Re:FOR WORKERS REVOLUTION! (1)

spidercoz (947220) | more than 2 years ago | (#38343630)

Aren't you about 100 years late with this?

Fugal? (4, Informative)

Sez Zero (586611) | more than 2 years ago | (#38343170)

Fugal should be Frugal and should not link to an advertisement for a Dell laptop coupon.

It's true! (2)

UngodAus (198713) | more than 2 years ago | (#38343202)

Anyone who doesn't believe it, try youtubing from a company other than one of the majors. Moving recently to Germany has highlighted just how little there is that isn't claimed by the big 4. Seriously, 7/10 videos I click through to display "Unfortunately, this -music-content is not available in Germany because GEMA has not granted the respective music publishing rights.". In this case, it was UMG. Surprise surprise. On of all things, a Rammstein video. What?!

bittorrent is your friend (1)

arcite (661011) | more than 2 years ago | (#38343264)

The information wants to be free!

Correction... (1)

brian0918 (638904) | more than 2 years ago | (#38343222)

"Just how much does the FCC help these companies control?"

There, I fixed that for ya.

Re:Correction... (1)

spidercoz (947220) | more than 2 years ago | (#38343642)

lol, you're cute

The Medium is the message (1)

arcite (661011) | more than 2 years ago | (#38343230)

Sure, 'OLD' media controls the advertising and programing, content, what we see and hear throughout our day....but it is increasingly user generated content that is beyond big media's grasp. Websites, blogs, instant messaging, it's all User generated and unfiltered (for now). Everyone in the world today has the technology to block 99.9% of all advertising, tracking software, bypass firewalls, to have greater control over their own exposure and experiences. To be sure, the corporate and governmental PsyOps to control our buying and media consumption habits are pervasive and unrelenting, however each of us has the power to take control. The choice is ours.

The message is the message (1)

betterunixthanunix (980855) | more than 2 years ago | (#38343446)

The message of the big media companies is that you should be out buying your way to happiness. The medium is irrelevant, the old media executives will find a way to take control of everything -- already, they are finding ways to turn blogs, Facebook, and other "new media" concepts into new vehicles for their message.

Everyone in the world today has the technology to block 99.9% of all advertising

Technology that is going unused by the masses. If it is not the default, it is not going to be used by more than a minority of people.

each of us has the power to take control. The choice is ours.

If the proles knew their strength, they would have no need to conspire. Except that the proles need someone to show them their strength, and they only pay attention to the very mainstream media that will never do such a thing.

... and claim ownership of the remaining 10% (1)

gmuslera (3436) | more than 2 years ago | (#38343240)

All your comments are belong to them

What else do they control? (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38343244)

....the Democratic Party!!

He's justifying the consolidation, (3, Insightful)

cmv1087 (2426970) | more than 2 years ago | (#38343276)

not disputing it. By asserting that profit margins are thin (so the incentive to take risks is lower), that media companies are messy businesses (apparently, he believes organized media output is a myth), and that the corporations listed are so large that controlling all departments is a tall order, he doesn't seem to think the consolidation is anything to worry about. His fact checking is minimal, mostly constrained to making fun of some math gone wrong and telling everyone that his bullshit detector is going off. The infographic itself is pretty neat, but the post criticizing is hardly worth reading, much less linking.

MEGA MEDIA? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38343290)

Nah... Kimble is just a criminal.. Bittorrent is still the undisputed #1 in controlling (my) content...

Now excuse me.. I want to read this interesting article.. lol...

Re:MEGA MEDIA? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38343358)

So... much... fail...

This doesnt surprise anyone, does it? (5, Interesting)

james_van (2241758) | more than 2 years ago | (#38343292)

Let's think about how business works - if there are 10 companies doing a particular thing, at any given time, 1 or more will decide that they want to do more of the particular thing. They will then use leverage/bribery/corporate espionage/collusion/etc to acquire 1 or more of the others. Over time, this will continue until the original 10 are consolidated to the lowest number possible to avoid anti-trust/monopoly actions. And, during all of this time, they will continue to produce whatever thing that the general public will most readily consume. This usually entails things of medium to low quality (high quality is expensive and, in the case of tangible products, has a low replacement rate), dumbed down to appeal to the lowest common denominator and mass marketed with loud, brightly colored advertising. This has been the way of things for many years, this will be the way of things for many years to come. There are a few different models that have managed to squeak by briefly, but theyre rare and often not much better.

turn it off (5, Insightful)

anonieuweling (536832) | more than 2 years ago | (#38343300)

You control that TV.
You can turn it off.
Online news can be so refreshing.

Re:turn it off, all of it (4, Insightful)

Cragen (697038) | more than 2 years ago | (#38343484)

If I could, I would turn it all off. (Being a developer, it's a bit hard.) I got sent overseas 30 years ago for a year. (Pre-Internet! lol) We usually got all non-ridiculous news in 3 - 4 days. So, I kicked my news habit. (There was no English TV either, so I also quite accidentally kicked my TV habit.) So, really, how much does this "news" really affect your life? No much, really. Have a nice day. Cheers!

Re:turn it off, all of it (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38343730)

So, I kicked my news habit.

The cognitive dissonance in you is strong considering where you posted this.

Re:turn it off, all of it (1)

Stoopiduk (1593855) | more than 2 years ago | (#38343804)

Either that or he/she correctly filed many of the recent stories on /. as "not news"

Re:turn it off (1)

bbhorrigan (1593919) | more than 2 years ago | (#38343668)

Online news has recently taken a step towards the emptiness and dishonest practices of big media lately as well. The biggest news archives are still controlled by the same media. Look at the biggest news sites, Yahoo, CNN, MSNBC etc: I mean, look what has happened to YouTube. 4 years ago, it was owned by bloggers and people with original content, and then capitalism hit. Now it is whoever has the best music video, sad really.

Misleading title (5, Insightful)

marcosdumay (620877) | more than 2 years ago | (#38343330)

The title is misleading, and so is the article. The problem is that (what 90% of people see) is different from (90% of what people see).

To answer the question (why is it a question? The article states as a fact), yes big media controls 90% of what is actualy distributed as old style media. That is different from saying that it owns 90% of the content, and much nearer to saying that a huge proportion of the people will only see what big media shows them.

That is still a problem, but a different problem.

Re:Misleading title (1)

nine-times (778537) | more than 2 years ago | (#38343980)

That is different from saying that it owns 90% of the content, and much nearer to saying that a huge proportion of the people will only see what big media shows them.

Well you have a point, but the real problem is that "big media" owns most of the distribution channels, and that's why most people will only see what big media shows them.

Re:Misleading title (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38344088)

Also, US old style media, not worldwide

Re:Misleading title (1)

marcosdumay (620877) | more than 2 years ago | (#38344234)

Indeed, at my country just one company controls what 90% of the people see. It varies, but I bet it is universaly bad.

Worse in Canada (2)

Droog57 (2516452) | more than 2 years ago | (#38343344)

I have no way to get solid numbers, but going by the standard rule of thumb for Canada/USA comparisons (10% of US numbers for Canada), we are in a similar boat on media, except that here there are only three major media corporations, and they also control 90% of Internet access as well. The CRTC (Canadian version of the FCC) has been in bed with these three under the guise of "protecting Canadian content" for over 40 years. And Bell Canada along with Rogers Communications own 90% of the Canadian Cell network and just got together to purchase the most lucrative sports franchise in the world, the Toronto Maple Leafs Hockey Club (worth almost double what the Yankees are worth at 1.3 billion for 75% of the Franchise. So weep not, my American friends, you have it good down there...

Re:Worse in Canada (0)

danomac (1032160) | more than 2 years ago | (#38344112)

You forgot to mention that the CRTC is sort of government controlled and sort of not. They're held at arms length and the actual goverment itself has no control over what the CRTC does. While the government can make recommendations the CRTC is not really obliged to listen.

Then factor in the CRTC is run by ex-bosses of the big Tel/Cable companies (gee, just a slight conflict of interest there!) and it gets bleaker.

Apologist (2)

betterunixthanunix (980855) | more than 2 years ago | (#38343376)

Just another corporate apologist trying to convince us that everything is fine and that we should just go on with our lives.

It is not that these companies are conspiring to make our entertainment crappy just for some lulz. They want to convey a particular message and manipulate the population in a particular way. The major media companies refused to air a commercial that encouraged people not to buy anything for just one day -- even though they were being offered the standard rate for airing commercials. The popular shows are just the cheapest possible way to mold everyone's minds, from preschool through adulthood.

The conspiracy is this: condition everyone to believe that they should buy as many things as possible, and that the ultimate goal in their lives should be to make enough money to do so. Popular entertainment exists to convey that message, with a few hints about what to buy (MacDonald's, diamonds, cars, video games, etc.).

Re:Apologist (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38343644)

"When you're young, you look at television and think, There's a conspiracy. The networks have conspired to dumb us down. But when you get a little older, you realize that's not true. The networks are in business to give people exactly what they want. That's a far more depressing thought. Conspiracy is optimistic! You can shoot the bastards! We can have a revolution! But the networks are really in business to give people what they want." -Steve Jobs
 
And before anyone cries about it, no, I'm not a fanboi but I found it one of the few things I think Steve and I would really agree on.

Re:Apologist (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38344284)

You must really be out of the loop if you think it's spelled "MacDonald's"

A simple question to a bigger answer. (1)

3seas (184403) | more than 2 years ago | (#38343422)

How many of you that watch only mainstream media (and slashdot of course) have heard of Occupy Wall Street? And for those that have what have you heard about it?

I think the answer to this question also answers the much bigger question of how many girls has charlie sheen slept with...

Re:A simple question to a bigger answer. (1)

Lumpy (12016) | more than 2 years ago | (#38343974)

I heard about it weeks before the talking heads did. Cripes if you read ANY online news you are usually 48-72 hours or MORE ahead of the worthless idiots on FOx news or CNN.

Numbers never lie... But they do mislead. (4, Interesting)

jellomizer (103300) | more than 2 years ago | (#38343430)

Simple obvious fact one: The larger company will have a larger market share.
Simple obvious fact two: The smaller company will have less market share.

So if some companies are bigger then they will have more Market Share and control then the others.

So if the top 6 companies (assume they are all equal) own 90% share then each one only has 15% market share. Which is big but no means a monopoly.

Percentages are a way of summarizing real data. However by grouping and summarizing the summary. And clustering data in a particular way you can prove anything you want.

Think the 99%ers vs. the 53%ers they both choose different measurements and summarize and group values differently to prove their point.

 

Re:Numbers never lie... But they do mislead. (1)

Aladrin (926209) | more than 2 years ago | (#38343536)

I think the point wasn't that any of them have a monopoly, even though it's possible 1 of them has over 50% while the rest have considerably less and still add to 90%.

The point was that with only 6 major companies competing, it's easy for each of them to create garbage because none of the others are bothering to do better. They are technically competing with each other, but they aren't driven to do so.

And the remaining 10% don't have enough fans to make anything popular and upset the status quo.

I think some people would tell you that it's impossible for the little companies to make worthwhile content, but that's bunk. I watched a show from New Zealand called 'This is Not My Life' and it was some of the best scifi/drama I've seen in a while. I didn't even know New Zealand had TV shows of their own. It came completely out of nowhere.

Manufacturing Consent (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38343482)

For a thorough analysis of the topic and a proposition of the "propaganda model" for the mass media, I recommend Manufacturing Consent by Noam Chomsky and Edward S. Herman.

pretty lame article (1)

Lluc (703772) | more than 2 years ago | (#38343496)

Why is this even posted on the main page of Slashdot? He makes one good point: lumping the entire revenue of GE into the revenue of the big size media companies is disingenuous because GE does way more than run a media industry. The rest of the article is just Cliff Kuang saying, "Are the Big 6 media companies a big conspiracy??! I don't think so!"

The main point of the Frugal Dad Infographic stands: consolidating our audio and visual media (+the broadcast / network industry) into a few companies is going to continue driving everything toward the lowest common denominator drivel. Our future is staged-reality TV shows where celebrity* lawyers and police force investigate crime prisoners to sing to determine their punishment. We will call it Law and Crime Scene X-Factor. {*Note: by celebrity I mean semi-attractive wealthy people who are famous because of sex-tapes they release online.}

Re:pretty lame article (1)

vlm (69642) | more than 2 years ago | (#38343582)

to determine their punishment

And if you've seen the "classic" movie "running man" you can pretty much guess what this is going to be. Maybe for the somewhat less severe offenders it'll be more like "survivor" challenges, or "ow my balls" from idiocracy.

Killian! (1)

Pope (17780) | more than 2 years ago | (#38344018)

I'll be back.

Still better then legislated... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38343528)

behind the scenes and away from much needed discretion.

You guys were really left out of the loop, eh?... like 20 years behind in some ways... lol (still probably same source)... frigging rebels... lol

Really? Opinions are all you'll get... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38343538)

You really think we are going to be able to answer that question off the cuff, that isn't all opinion? It would take months of research to determine an intelligent, factual answer to that question. Even after all that research, there may not be a solid answer, but really just an estimation of the whole. And, in the end, does revenue determine control? It would appear there are many other factors that determine control, other than just revenue. Blog sites that are controlled by people who are not connected to larger media companies still get their sources of information from smaller pieces of those large media companies. There is little content that is created anymore that is totally original ideas from the mind of just one person.

Look at the ease at which information is disseminated. If one source puts the information in an email or website, and provides code or links for other sites to distribute that information, then it becomes really easy for that information to be spread across the world. Then, if that information is spicy enough, or intriguing enough, that link goes through social networks like Twitter and Facebook, and suddenly, we have a trending topic. When you look back on popular trending topics, do you think the term "Kardashian" has been in the forefront of the public for so long because it is controlled by the "Big 6", or because it is easy to provide content related to it that ends up creating bottom line revenue?

Seriously? (1)

koan (80826) | more than 2 years ago | (#38343558)

This is only news if you live under a rock, if you want to fully understand this look at who control that 90%.

Quality, not quantity (2)

Stoopiduk (1593855) | more than 2 years ago | (#38343584)

It's all very well owning The Sun, the largest newspaper in Europe (or whatever was claimed) but you could fill that whole damned rag with ads and pictures of kittens; as long as you had one story about a football (soccer) scandal and one story about a soap opera, everyone would go about their lives as normal.

With the internet in its current state, we can rely on educated people to find their own sources of information, check their reliability and make their own conclusions. Yes it would be nice to have the Sun readers thinking for themselves, but it's not about to happen. Let them have their crappy media, as long as they're happy with it. We still have plenty of room to go out and find the information we need. Just because 90% of published media is crap about X Factor doesn't mean I'm spending my 90% of my time reading crap about X Factor, that's for sure.

90%? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38343604)

By 90% does that assume that the remaining 10% is the sum of all of the 15 frames of black between segments/spots?

Big Biz is the Default, and We Keep the Default (3, Interesting)

mtrachtenberg (67780) | more than 2 years ago | (#38343618)

Here's the problem in a nutshell. We have access to information and analysis from gazillions of people, but most of us pay attention only to those who are presented as the default choices. Those who are presented as the default choices inevitably represent the opinions of those who own them.

This is the herding mentality responsible for financial bubbles -- people follow those who are perceived as successful regardless of the lead cow's intelligence and common sense or lack thereof. (Goldman Sachs. QED.)

The challenge is to restore diversity in what is heard, not just diversity in what is available to be heard. That, unfortunately, is a distributed problem, and cannot be solved by just adding a few voices.

It should be noted, however... (1)

vikingpower (768921) | more than 2 years ago | (#38343624)

...that although this is not an idiosyncracy of the sole US media landscape, it is still a particularity that the media landscapes in e.g. many European do not exhibit. Allright. I relativated it. Now what ?

umm.. (1)

Truekaiser (724672) | more than 2 years ago | (#38343692)

he just took a info graphic from another blogger who did all the research while he did not do any and called it bull-crap. because 'he' personally thinks those companies are not out to control what the media reports, despite all the evidence on how murdoch for example runs news corp and all that he owns? or how the news companies G.E. owns were downplaying the whole nuclear crisis in japan because *gasp* they make reactors themselves?
and he was given top billing on a slashdot article that made the front page? http://www.flickr.com/photos/70805309@N00/319047856/ [flickr.com] and yes i know the irony involved in posting that picture.

An appalling misstatement of fact (1)

Scareduck (177470) | more than 2 years ago | (#38343716)

The word "Internet" appears nowhere on that infographic, which appears designed to rile up the lefty animals. Presenting "media" as one monolithic entity fits right in with that blinkered worldview and confirms it, but it is only that: bias confirmation for people inclined to wave blue flags.

Re:An appalling misstatement of fact (1)

Stoopiduk (1593855) | more than 2 years ago | (#38344110)

Don't look at his anti-smoking infographic, your head will explode.

For reference, I am anti-smoking (and anti the word "infographic") but there are some very cheap tricks in there. The kind of tricks you might get away with if you rely on mass media reading sheep (and those stupid enough to buy Dell laptops on your say so).

Re:An appalling misstatement of fact (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38344154)

Lefty? Huh? I thought it was righties that hated the liebrul media.

Re:An appalling misstatement of fact (1)

Stoopiduk (1593855) | more than 2 years ago | (#38344212)

I think he's talking rile up as in agitate them to fight with the author on an anti-mega media crusade.

My part in the mega media wars can be summed up by the number of times I have misread Mega Media in the title as Megavideo...

NEWS (2)

WillgasM (1646719) | more than 2 years ago | (#38343868)

the real problem is the news. Almost every news outlet is regurgitating the exact same story handed down from some corporate office. There is no more journalism, because journalists aren't allowed to think for themselves. Their opinions have already been written for them and entered into the teleprompter. If you'd like a laugh, google "conan o'brien push the envelope" and you can watch newscasters from across the country reading the exact same dialogue. Every corporation has an agenda. Be it product placements or rigging elections, those who control the media will use it to their advantage.

Re:NEWS (1)

justsayin (2246634) | more than 2 years ago | (#38344274)

Ok, I searched for "conan o'brien push the envelope" and all I got was hits on gay marriage. Whatcha trying to do here? Misslead us like the media. Seriously thought I would like to see Conan showing that clip. Got a link for it handy?

Easy (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38344104)

What percentage of the people know about building 7? Who here knows why a birth certificate containing 12 layers of images could be very important?
If you don't know what I'm talking about then your media has failed you.

Mainstream media, where truth is mere coincidence (2)

gestalt_n_pepper (991155) | more than 2 years ago | (#38344250)

The only uncontrolled content at the moment can be found on blogs. These will eventually be subverted too, but at the moment, many blogs are not. Zerohedge.com, for all it's sensationalism, does report on real economic events, as does nakedcapitalism.com. Yahoo and MSNBC, of course, are happy-talk propaganda rags designed only to keep consumers/voters distracted from real events and buying stocks and schlock.

I suggest that anyone who doubts this review these two wiki entries:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Concentration_of_media_ownership [wikipedia.org]
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Interlocking_directorate [wikipedia.org]

Bottom line? The same people who own Goldman Sacks and the banks also own the major media outlets, and the messages are tightly controlled. Subtle propaganda is inserted into popular programs (e.g In a recent "House"episode, a man was determined to be mentally ill because he was preparing for social disorder. House calls him an idiot who thinks the world is going to end.) OWS protesters are subtly presented as fools, without ever showing a real discussion. The fact that ousting them from all encampments at the same time required coordination at a national scale is never mentioned. There are endless examples, if you can stop eating cheetos and ignore "Dancing with the stars."

The only idiots I see are people who believe anything they see on TV or mainstream media news, where truth is merely coincidental.

Liberal media bias, my foot. (1)

forkfail (228161) | more than 2 years ago | (#38344280)

Funny how given the ownership by the few, so many folks still believe that there's a liberal bias to the media.

That's been a lie by the right for years to try to push the window of perceptions to the right by getting folks to think that right wing views are actually left, it shifts folks to the right without them even thinking about it.

And yet, even knowing that the MSM is dominated by a half dozen corporations, folks are still probably going to persist in claiming that the media is somehow part of a Huge Liberal Conspiracy (tm).

(And, yes, MSNBC is allowed to run free. Even Fox had their token liberal (Colmes) so they could claim "fairness"...)

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