Mainstream Media Swansong?

6 Positive Signs That Mainstream Media is Collapsing

Off-Air-Mainstream-Media-TVBy Phillip Schneider
Waking Times

There is an information awakening taking place right now, and mainstream media is being outed for what it really is: corporate and government controlled propaganda. People are turning to alternative news sources more swiftly than ever now, and as a result, the old guard of media is collapsing at free-fall speeds.

Here are 6 positive signs of the collapse of mainstream media:

1. Mainstream Media is Owned by a Handful of Corporations and the People Know It

It’s no secret anymore that nearly everything we see, read, and hear comes from just a handful of mega-corporations. Thanks to the alternative media, it has become a widely known fact that just six corporations control 90% of the media we consume. These big six have the ability to make key decisions and delegate the news to their lower subsidiary companies by cutting out important stories or alternative points of view. People recognize this and are moving over to the indy media as a result.

2. Fox Stops Disclosing Live Viewership Ratings

Fox News, a subsidiary company owned by Rupert Murdoch of News Corp and top mainstream media outlet has just announced that it will stop disclosing its ratings for live TV viewership. They argue that these statistics are no longer relevant because of how many record their television shows, but it is also being seen as a way to hide a decaying audience. Fox will now be repackaging statistics on a weekly basis to make even the most modest results appear positive.

3. 98% of Young Adults Do Not Trust Mainstream Media

A recent poll shows that only 2% of young adults trust the mainstream media to do the “right thing” on a regular basis. This poll, which was conducted at the Harvard Institute of Politics on over 3,000 18-29 year olds, shows that only 2% of young adults trust the media to “do the right thing” “all of the time.” Furthermore, 10% said that they do the right thing “most of the time”, while 49% said “some of the time” and a whopping 39% said that the media “never” does the right thing.

4. Mainstream Media is Hog-Tied by Corporations and the People Know It

An excerpt from the documentary The Corporation illustrates in their own words the story of two journalists working for Fox News in the mid 1990’s. Here is an excerpt from the film, of an investigation of the “human health implications” of injecting Bovine Growth Hormone into the cows which were used for producing milk:

“With Monsanto, I didn’t realize how effectively a corporation could work to get something on the marketplace,” said journalist Jane Akre. Before the story aired, a letter was received from Monsanto saying that there would be “dire consequences for Fox News” if it does. After receiving the letter, the general manager at Fox in Florida called them into his office and demanded that the story be altered. The next thing that he said was “We just paid three billion dollars for these television stations. We’ll tell you what the news is. The news is what we say it is…if you refuse to present this story the way we think it should be presented you’ll be fired for insubordination (defiance).”

You can tell by the amount of protesters at “March Against Monsanto” protests that the corporate controlled media does not have a stranglehold on information like they once did.

5. Mainstream Media is Literally Lying to Us So Blatantly that Nobody Pays Attention Anymore

A recent analysis conducted by PunditFact revealed that, according to this study, over half of all statements made by Fox News are false. Now this is not surprising, but what might be is that NBC/MSNBC is right up there at 46% of their statements being anywhere between “Mostly False” to “Pants on Fire.” CNN and ABC rated better, but national new shouldn’t be a race to the bottom.

6. Independent Media More Successful than Ever Before

The positivity that comes out of this is simple: people are waking up to this madness. No longer are we in a situation where the media controls the narrative like they once did, because the new media is there to pick up the ball and roll out the stories that the mainstream media refuses to get into.

The alternative media is making such enormous waves now that the older media is actually starting to listen to alternative voices and stories that are being published by new media outlets. The fact that Kevin Folta, a University Professor at the University of Florida, was receiving large unrestricted grants from Monsanto to promote GMO’s and round-up was even reported on by the New York Times thanks to alternative media making it such a big story that if they hadn’t they would have lost credibility: “If the Times is telling us the truth, then why didn’t they tell us about Kevin Folta?”

As long as the independent media keeps moving, there’s nothing that can stop the truth from getting out.



On Volcanoes in Iceland

Peddling Fear of an Icelandic Volcanic Eruption


The 2010 eruption of Eyjafjallajökull seen on May 8 of that year. Since then, the news media wants us to live in fear of the next Iceland eruption. Image: NASA.


As we approach the second anniversary of the Eyjafjallajökull eruption that created air travel havoc across Europe, I suppose it comes as no surprise that the news media has decided to mark the anniversary with fear. I’ve seen a flurry of articles come out over the past few days all pushing the idea that a new eruption in Iceland, bigger and badder that Eyjafjallajökull, is around the corner, waiting to mug you and steal your wallet.


Let’s take a quick tour of some of the headlines, shall we?

Really pitching the soft sell, aren’t they? And guess what? Almost every one of these articles focuses on the Big Bad Wolf of Iceland, Katla. Sure, other volcanoes also show signs of activity (see Askja or even2011 eruption of Grimsvötn), but Katla is the media darling. Katla has definitely had large eruptions in the past, but it isn’t even the standard for large eruptions in Iceland (I think the Laki eruption might have something to say about that). However, Katla is (a) near Eyjafjallajökull; (b) hasn’t erupted in a long time; and (c) easier to pronounce.

Now listen, Iceland is a very geologically active place. It sits on the Mid-Atlantic Ridge, were new oceanic crust is born, pushing North America and Europe further apart. It also sits on top of a mantle plume, where hot, buoyant mantle material rises and melts as a decompresses. Both of these factors mean that Iceland has a lot of volcanic activity. It also means many of the volcanoes will appear “restless” as magma moves in conduits under the volcano, sometimes at depths of 30 or more kilometers below the surface – and although magma is moving, it doesn’t mean an eruption is going to happen next week. Volcanoes are dynamic features that are always responding to new intrusions of magma, but remember this key fact: volcanoes spend much more time not erupting than erupting.

This key idea is what makes volcano monitoring such a challenge – we can see the signs of activity, like earthquakes, degassing, warming of the Earth’s surface, steam explosions, deformation, but deciding that volcano X will erupt on a specific date far in the future is just not possible. Sure, we can say the probability is higher that a volcano will erupt if it shows some of these signs, but really, for any active volcano, for each day that passes, we are closer to its next eruption (whenever that might be). Katla will erupt again, but do we need to rehash the fear of total Airtravelopocalypse each time it hiccups? I sure hope not.

The two things we really don’t know about the next eruption of Katla: (1) when it is going to happen and (2) how big will it be. Without this knowledge, all this wailing and gnashing of teeth is for one reason only – to get people to read your article. There is no scientific basis for you to be any more afraid of Katla now than at any time – and even if the signs of activity increase, the fear shouldn’t come with it. As an example, the 2011 eruption of Grimsvötn was, in many times, larger than the Eyjafjallajökull eruption – taller plume, higher rate of eruption (initially) – but it did not cause anywhere close to the chaos that Eyjafjallajökull caused in European/North American air traffic.

What I’m trying to get across is this: Every eruption in Iceland is not doom. Every rumble of a volcano is not a sign of a “huge new eruption”. We live on a geologically active planet and significant geologic events are going to happen (just look at the earthquakes in Indonesia and Mexico yesterday). However, living in fear of that big eruption or that big earthquake isn’t going to help us be prepared for the next one.

Image: Aqua image of Eyjafjallajokull erupting on May 8, 2010. Image by NASA/GSFC/Jeff Schmaltz/MODIS Land Rapid Response Team