Media Lens has been around for ten years now, continually challenging the view the corporate media presents to people.  The authors answer a few common questions as to why they do what they do in a very clear and structured way.  Defining the problem is always the first step to finding  a solution, so I reprint their words here with the goal of defining the problem for people to see.

Question: Why did you start Media Lens?

Answer: The media presents itself as a neutral window on the world. We are to believe that the view we see through the window is ‘the world as it is’. It’s ‘All the news that’s fit to print’ because ‘Comment is free but facts are sacred’. What’s to challenge? When you take a closer look at the ‘window’, you realise it’s not a window on the world at all; it’s a kind of painting of a window on the world. And the ‘painting’ has been carefully produced using colours, textures and forms all selected by the media arm of a corporate system that has very clear interests and bias.

And the one issue the media will not seriously discuss is the idea that it is not a neutral window on the world. This silence protects every deception promoting war, destruction of the climate, and the general subordination of people and planet to profit. It has to be challenged.

Q: Are there any media systems in the world that you think work well?

A: Compassion and honesty are found in individuals, not in systems. There are individuals who are sensitive to the suffering of others, to the importance of compassion for the welfare of themselves and others, and who, to a greater or lesser degree, subordinate self-interest (wealth, status) to rational analysis and truthful communication. Honest individuals reject the idea that they need to be trained to understand, and respond productively to, the suffering of others. They understand that the great enemy of dissent is the desire to participate comfortably as part of a system, herd, corporation, which inevitably demand conformity and compromise. They understand that the sense of comfort is illusory and actually a condition of great suffering. The self-centred mind is inherently stressed and dissatisfied. A life spent in the self-centred herd is not a happy one, it comes at great cost to the soul. Norman Mailer observed:

‘There is an odour to any Press Headquarters that is unmistakeable… The unavoidable smell of flesh burning quietly and slowly in the service of a machine.’ (Mailer, The Time Of Our Time, Little Brown, 1998, p.457)”

It is nice to see others engaged in the same struggle fighting the same battles. Cheers Media Lens and may you have 10 more successful years after this.