On the Media: August 26, 2011

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Friday, August 26, 2011

Libyan Rebel (Filippo Monteforte/AFP/Getty Images)

Misinformation in the fog of war, the past present and future of Libyan media, Teddy Roosevelt's reading habits, and musicians fight to regain copyrights.

A Unique Opportunity for Propaganda

Col. Muammar el-Qaddafi’s government-controlled media is gone, but New York Times reporter David Kirkpatrick says that nothing has arisen in Libya to accurately relay the news. Libya, he says, remains a place where there is "no reliable rule or yardstick to measure the truth.” Brooke spoke with Kirkpatrick about the difficulties of separating truth from lies in Tripoli right now.

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Libyan Media: Past, Present and Future

With a newly freed Libya comes a newly freed Libyan media.  In the wake of the revolution, the media in Libya will play an integral role in stabilizing the country, but after decades of serving as nothing but a propaganda tool for the Gaddafi regime, the Libyan media have a lot to learn. Brooke speaks with Jamal Dajani from Internews, which has just released a report on the Libyan media.  Dajani says Libya is a clean slate, but in dire need of journalism training and infrastructure.

Song: Zenga Zenga Song

Artist: Noy Alooshe


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State of Post-Revolutionary Egyptian Media

In the aftermath of a revolution, a free media is essential to ensuring democracy. Seven months after their own revolution, the Egyptian media are still far from free, despite an unprecedented amount of openness in the press. Brooke talks to Khaled Dawoud, a reporter for the Egyptian paper Al Ahram, who OTM first spoke to back in April. Dawoud says that despite a proliferation of new voices in the media, the military remains a red line journalists can't cross.

Song: Thursday

Artist: The Weeknd


Sex Offender Registries Don't Work

No crimes produce public disgust like sex crimes. But according to two recent studies, the laws we create to deter sex criminals from recidivating may be doing more harm than good. Amanda Agan, a PhD candidate at the University of Chicago, has researched the subject -- she talks to Brooke about why sex offender registries don't seem to work. 

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The Media and the West Memphis Three

In 1994, three teenagers were convicted of killing three second graders in a supposed Satanic ritual. Last week, the men now known as the West Memphis three made a plea deal that secured their release. Brooke talks to Mara Leveritt, author of the book The Devil's Knot about the "Satanic Panic" that precipitated the case, and the media's involvement after their conviction.

Song: Dial

Artist: Deaf City

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Brooke reads from a few of your letters and comments.

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Presidential Reading

President Obama received criticism this week about the number of fiction books on his summer reading list.  Some pundits argue that reading fiction makes him appear to be a political lightweight or “out of touch with reality.” President Theodore Roosevelt, however, was a voracious reader of all genres. Brooke spoke to his biographer, Edmund Morris, about the reading habits of the 26th president and how an appreciation of fiction is a sign of a rich mind.

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Musicians Reclaim Their Copyrights

In 1976 Congress changed copyright law so that any musician who wrote a song after January 1st, 1978 could apply to reclaim rights to those songs after 35 years.  So in 2013 there’s a long line of 1978 hitmakers who stand to regain their valuable songs and albums.  Duke professor James Boyle explains to Brooke why the windfall for Bruce Springsteen, Billy Joel, Funkadelic and others is being fought tooth and nail by the record industry.

Song: Minute By Minute

Artist: The Doobie Brothers

Song: I Will Survive

Artist: Gloria Gaynor

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