Old media is collapsing, with major newspapers going bankrupt and those left standing too often beholden to big corporate owners and advertisers. The resulting “news,” when not skewed to suit the interests of a few, is often superficial and disempowering — constantly reporting problems without offering solutions or opportunities to act.
Our world is facing historic crises, and we need to build a media that can rise to the challenge — a media powered by people, not big business.
With almost 15 million email subscribers, the readership of Avaaz is bigger than most of world’s biggest news publications. That’s why we’re launching the Avaaz Daily Briefing, a website to provide the news that really matters to the global citizen, with deep insights and ideas of what we can do about the challenges facing our world.
An astonishing 97% of our community voted for this idea in our annual poll last January. We’ve spent months shaping the concept and recruiting an initial team of top journalists, and now we’re ready to scale up and get started! If 20,000 of us donate just a small amount each right now, we’ll have enough to fund the first 6 months of this exciting new big idea. Click here to make it happen:
We often lobby governments to be accountable to people, but the truth is that politicians often dance to the media’s tune, and the media can be even more powerful than governments in shaping the way the world is. Just this week, two UK prime ministers are testifying before a public inquiry scrambling to explain just how much influence Rupert Murdoch, the world’s largest media baron, has had over the British government. And that’s just the tip of the iceberg — a handful of corporate media barons own far too much of the media, and abuse that power for political favours.
Even when the owner isn’t meddling, media are sometimes fearful of offending corporate advertisers and sponsors. More subtly, the media as a profession has in some countries become dominated by a cynical and toxic culture that focuses on trafficking in smears and muckraking more than creating honest public understanding. It’s easily manipulated by slick PR firms, and invests too little in the deep investigative journalism that democracy needs to stay healthy. There are many good journalists in the world who answer this calling, but the media system as a whole isn’t able to support them and too often fails us. But our community, including people in every part of every country on earth, could become the next wave of the world’s correspondents, and build a trusted new people-powered record of the world.
If we don’t act now, the information that shapes the views of voters, politicians and our children’s generation will be owned and controlled by a few, driven by profit instead of the public interest. It’s time for the media to move into the non-profit sector, run by organizations with public missions. Maybe that’s where the media always belonged in the first place, and Avaaz should lead the way. Let’s make it happen — chip in to help launch the Avaaz Daily Briefing:
The march of democracy that is sweeping our world is remaking many of our old institutions. For 5 years now we have worked to reform politics and government in many countries, with increasing numbers of successes. But increasingly we find that politics and media are two sides of the same coin, that one cannot change without change in the other. The truth is, we as people are governed as much by media as we are by governments. And it’s time to take them both back.
Ricken, Luis, David, Morgan, Ian, Mary, Alaphia, and the entire Avaaz team
P.S. take a sneak peak at the early stages of the Daily Briefing at en.avaaz.org, but don’t forget to donate: https://secure.avaaz.org/en/