Information is power! The airwaves belong to the people of the United States and not to corporations. The First Amendment protects the freedom of the press, and the internet can function as a virtual “press” for all citizens. We must keep access to the internet and the freedom of the press it provides protected. The leasing of the airwaves needs to bring revenue to the state that reflect the growing commercial value of those airwaves. The airwaves must also remain available for the open sharing of information for the betterment of the democracy.
Media Reform Action Items:
- Reassert that the full-spectrum airwaves are a part of the Commons
- Increase citizen access to all media, including internet, television, and radio. Provide public funding.
- Increase the number of frequencies reserved for public use
- Repeal the Digital Millennium Copyright Act of 1998 and Related Subsequent Provisions within Copyright Law which has resulted in the intimidation, prosecution, and/or conviction of people in our country for sharing information.
We the People demand:
- All media outlets provide free airtime to all candidates and to all sides of ballot initiatives
- All cable and satellite television providers must broadcast all local stations in their least costly option
- No single entity or person be allowed to own more than one broadcast outlet in the same locality
- The Internet be considered part of the information commons with no grant of special privileges for users who can afford to pay more than others
- Stronger internet privacy law, granting passwords, encryption, and other forms of electronic privacy the same privileges as sealed envelopes
- Some portion of airtime on broadcast and cable television be made available to citizens who would not be able to afford advertising time. This includes encouragement of local broadcast media such as low-power neighborhood radio stations and adequate funding of public media
- That satire and critique in the media be protected by Oregon’s free speech protections if interpretations of the “fair use doctrine” in Copyright law fails to protect it
- “Sunshine laws” to grant citizen and media access to records of all government decision-making. Exceptions may be made in an extremely small number of situations involving privacy and security and must be approved by a joint legislative/executive council