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by Adam Corwin
Wednesday, Apr. 21, 2004 at 2:50 PM
firstname.lastname@example.org PO BOX 801 Waynesburg, PA 15370
This Article Examines Clear Channel Communications and how Internet Radio is being used to resist censorship.
In the current age of censorship witch hunts and corporate dominated media, Clear Channel stands at the forefront of a virtual oligarchy that dictates significant portions of what we hear and see. Owing over 1,200 radio stations, 37 television stations, and 200 venues, Clear Channel encompasses 248 of the top 250 radio markets. As a global force, Clear Channel reaches roughly 1/6 of the entire world population*. Being the quintessential superpower in global media, Clear Channel has become the strong right hand of The Federal Communications Commission (FCC). When the ultra conservative mantras of the FCC speak, Clear Channel acts. Through bold efforts of legislating morality, the FCC and Clear Channel have ensured that no free speech will be polluting the air waves in the United States of America.
Rather than accepting the seemingly omnipotent giants will, small pockets of resistance have emerged utilizing the vastly unregulated depths of the Internet to strike back. As Twenty-First Century online freedom fighters, Internet Radio is striking back against conservative oppression. During a recent trip to Los Angeles, we had the opportunity to witness an established entity for insurgency that exists in a major city quietly below the Clear Channel dominated airwaves.
Kill Radio is a self described collective organization committed to using media and distribution as a tool for promoting social and economic justice ultimately intending to promote the proliferation of radio in whatever form is necessary to challenge the corporate domination of our airwaves. The station is run by a dedicated group of 50+ activists, journalists, and DJ’s that dedicate their time and efforts for non commercial and non profit radio for the people. Sharing office space with Los Angeles Independent Media Center, the true spirit of the radio lives as a necessary response to the confines of global capital accumulation.
Our live exposure to the process came from the welcoming hands of Jake Sexton during his Monday broadcast of Lying Media Bastards. Moonlighting from his multimedia position with the Tom Morello and Serj Tankian sponsored political organization, Axis of Justice; Sexton spends his Monday afternoons playing excellent music that would make the censors at the FCC shutter. In addition to music, Sexton adds angry inspired news commentary to complete a sound package of music and activism.
In a few short hours, we found ourselves on the receiving end of an impromptu interview where we discussed touring in an independent punk band, the depletion of natural resources, and the prison industrial complex. Bringing relevant issues that affect our daily lives in Southwestern Pennsylvania to Los Angeles, Sexton and Kill Radio provided an unabridged format with the potential world audience only limited to Internet access and awareness of the broadcasts.
Although Internet radio has its limitations, it is one of many effective methods to take small chunks out of the Clear Channel markets. The organization potential of the Internet has been making the world of activism and organizing a much smaller place, Internet Radio is only expanding that capability. With the fine work of readily available broadcasts on hand, it is now up to the “people” to be educated consumers and tune into the sparks of freedom’s true spirit.
Hasta La Victoria Siempre!
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