Tag Archives: TV

Can Broadcasting Become Dangerous?

Sinclair Media Group is the owner of the largest number of TV stations in America. Most Americans don’t know it exists. Yet, Michael Copps, the George W. Bush-appointed former chairman of Federal Communications Commission (FCC), the top US broadcast regulator said, “Sinclair’s probably the most dangerous company most people have never heard of.” Sinclair’s close associations to Trump have allowed the company to skirt market regulations. Already the biggest broadcaster in the country, Sinclair is poised to make its biggest move yet. If the FCC approves Sinclair’s $3.9bn purchase of additional 42 stations, it would reach into the homes of almost three-quarters of Americans. Sinclair forces its local stations to run pro-Trump “news” segments. In April, they hired Boris Epshteyn, a former Trump campaign spokesman and member of the White House press office, as its chief political analyst. His “must-run” 10-minute political commentary segments unsurprisingly hewed closely to the Trump administration’s message. “As far as propaganda goes, this is pure, industrial-strength stuff.” Says the news and analysis website Slate, referring to Epshteyn’s contributions. Lucia Graves, a Washington-based writer for The Guardian joins the next edition of Life Elsewhere to talk about her recent revealing article on Sinclair and why it’s partisan politics and connections to the White House are raising concerns.

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Show #235

Next On Life Elsewhere

TV News or Infotainment?

with Eric Deggans, TV critic for NPR

Eric DeggansOnce upon a time, we listened and watched when the newscaster spoke.  If  Walter Cronkite adjusted his glasses to read the update on the news coming out of Dallas,  we paid attention to his every word.  He had no props, there were no computer generated graphics or a Richard Quest screeching at us while prancing around a hologram. Yes, TV news has changed since the days when a seasoned journalist like Walter Cronkite announced the death of the President. Today, if Anderson Cooper has his jacket off and flashing his guns in a tight black T shirt, then he is signaling to us, it’s a news story from somewhere outside the comfort of the studio. That somewhere could be anywhere, so to help us better understand a plethora of experts will unravel headache-inducing animated charts and graphs and looped footage. Such is the way of TV news in 2014. If Cronkite were around today, would he embrace the magical technology available? Probably, but the question is, would he stop being a journalist and start performing as an entertainer?

Summer Movies, The Good, The Bad & The Familiar

with Bob Ross film & media critic

Bob RossSequels dominate this year with flicks about Spider-Man, Transformers, Expendables, talking turtles, talking apes and animated dragons. Thankfully the season isn’t totally about would-be action blockbusters, there are documentaries covering a wide range of issues and the late Philip Seymour Hoffman is receiving rave reviews with two posthumous performances. Clint Eastwood and Roman Polanski (curiously)  take on material from Broadway and Woody Allen returns to France. Which ones will get Bob Ross’s Good, Bad or Familiar award?

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