FTC Workshop Tomorrow on Future of Journalism to Consider Controversial Recommendations

by on June 14, 2010 · 0 comments

Just a reminder that tomorrow the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) will be hosting the 3rd workshop in its ongoing event series, “Will Journalism Survive the Internet Age?” This workshop will feature various experts discussing the FTC’s 47-page “staff discussion draft,” which outlines “Potential Policy Recommendations to Support the Reinvention of Journalism.” In these two recent essays, I discussed the controversy surrounding some of the recommendations in that discussion draft:

According to this press release announcing the event,”The workshop is free and open to the public, but space is limited and attendees will be admitted on a first-come basis. The workshop will be held at: The National Press Club, 549 14th Street NW, 13th Floor, Washington, DC. Members of the public and press who wish to participate but who cannot attend can view a live webcast.  A link will be available on the day of the workshop at: http://www.ftc.gov/opp/workshops/news/index.shtml.”

Unless I am missing something, the FTC has still not posted an agenda or list of speakers, which is a bit strange. But apparently Rick Edmonds of the Poynter Institute will be participating. He’s got a nice piece up over at Poynter Online (“FTC Future-of-Journalism Inquiry Wraps Up With Little Momentum for Major Intervention“) summarizing some of what he’ll say tomorrow. I particularly liked his conclusion, which echoes the call Berin Szoka and I have made for allowing continuing marketplace evolution and experimentation:

Right now is a great time, though, for letting nature, creative destruction and innovation take their course. Will newspapers and other traditional media recommit to an adequate news effort and find new revenue streams as advertising budgets continue to move to all things digital?  Which of the start-ups will demonstrate financial stability and success with news audiences and marketers?  With these free market dynamics playing out at warp speed, later is the better time for deciding whether government invention is needed and if so, what kind.

Amen, brother.  [For more background about what the FTC and FCC have been up to on this front, see this ongoing series list of essays about, "Should Government Bailout Media, Subsidize the Press & Seek to “Save Journalism”?]

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