PRESIDENT'S MESSAGE |April 5, 2021
When Free Speech Meets Hate Speech
I’m really looking forward to the timely discussion we’ll have on Friday 4/9 at 3pm ET on When Free Speech Meets Hate Speech. The event has been put together by the ACM Inclusion, Equity and Engagement Caucus and will explore how community media navigates the questions that arise as communities confront hatred and discuss the limits of free speech. Anthony Riddle from BricArts Media will keynote the discussion followed by a panel and your questions.
The event is free, but you need to register ahead of time. Click here to register and join us on Friday.
Speaking of the topic, my thanks to our member organization GNAT TV in Southwest, Vermont for having me on as a guest to talk about free speech and community standards – here’s the video from their News Project.
State PEG Meetups
We have more State PEG Channel Meetups on the schedule later this week (Maryland and North Carolina on Friday) and later this month (Texas on 4/20, Florida on 4/21 and Georgia on 4/22). The Meetups are our way of connecting professionals in each state. I hope you can join us for the next one in your state. Please find the current meetup list here and email us at firstname.lastname@example.org for the meeting coordinates.
If you don’t see your state coming up and want to be a part of a Meetup – let us know!
Electronic Frontier Foundation
Our colleagues at Electronic Frontier Foundation have released a white paper exploring more reasons why state franchising of cable systems is a bad idea.
The report – detailed here
, looks particularly at how local franchising allows cities to encourage build-out of fiber broadband systems to all residents.
EFF is silent on issues that affect our organizations – but it points to an essential truth about local franchising: It’s possible to hold a corporation accountable for a social good if it’s the local government’s priority.
Will this mean a rollback for state regimes in the coming years? Perhaps if we can build coalitions to encourage grow local power and control of telecommunications. Nonetheless, the report is encouraging to see.