“Broadcast Blues”

Emmy-award winner Sue Wilson has been involved in the media for over twenty years.

Throughout her career, though, she noticed things around her changing. She saw the deregulation of media giants controlling the airwaves. She saw journalists losing their scruples. She even saw how the media was literally killing people. She could not handle it any longer.

“I saw what was happening to real people and to society and journalism as a result of bad policies and said ‘No more.’”

She had to speak up and let the people know. The best way she knew how to do that was to make a movie.

"Broadcast Blues" is the name of her documentary premiering at the Crest Theatre in Downtown Sacramento on Sunday, March 22 at 2pm. The film focuses on the corrupt practices that have become of the media and what the people of the United States can do to stop it. It emphasizes the fact that the public owns the airwaves, and it’s our job to stop the people putting out broadcasts if there are problems with it.

This is a very important point to her. She felt like the public thought that they had no control over what they are watching or listening to. She knew that they needed to be told.

“I think people feel disempowered," says Wilson, "People need to feel [that] they’re powered. Policy makers only change laws and rules when the public stands up and starts to scream.”

She made this film with a strong belief in what it stands for, but as a filmmaker realizes that the public needs to understand its content. She told me how during these ‘important’ films, people tend to fall asleep.

“I hope I’ve made a film that is both important and easy to watch…because I want real people to be able to look at this and get it.”

With a clear message and only one showing, I’m just hoping people will be able to fit in the theatre.

The film is being put out by Access Sacramento, Sacramento Media Group, and California Common Cause. It is also the first film to be featured in this year’s Sacramento International Film Festival.

Executive Director of Access Sacramento Ron Cooper was pleased to help Sue Wilson show her film.

“We always want to be supportive of local filmmakers” says Cooper.

Cooper is also not pleased with the consolidation of ownership of broadcast media, and agrees with the message that Wilson put in her film.

“Broadcast Blues does a good job of helping the general public understand the role of the Federal Communications Commission, the way that those powers to regulate and license television and radio stations have really diminished over the years, and the consequences of that” says Cooper. “But I think it also gives some hope that folks can take the media back. We do have power, we just need to understand better what the issues are and what we can do about it in order to exercise that power.”

This is a very important film to have out there to inform people of their rights. The people of Sacramento are lucky enough to have a filmmaker that cares enough about her town to have its premiere at the local theatre.

“We the people have the power to be able to change this media to make it work better for us,” says Wilson. “If there’s any one reason that people should see this film, it’s so that they can walk away empowered, knowing that it’s up to us to change this media back.”

To learn more information about the film, visit www.broadcastblues.tv
 

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March 20, 2009 | 1:27 PM

After watching “Broadcast Blues” on Sunday, plan to continue the discussion the following Thursday at the Coloma Center Auditorium. Bring your friends. You need not be a media expert to know how media is, or is not, serving your best interests. We want to find out your opinions.

April 2, 2009 (Thursday)
6:00 PM – 8:30 PM
Coloma Center Auditorium 4623 T St. in Sacramento

Let’s hear from you about how local media can serve our communities. Sacramento area residents, media professionals and media consumers are invited to attend a community discussion on local media to consider these topic areas:

• Public Affairs
• Diversity
• Political Coverage
• Community Input
• Broadband Internet Access

Sacramento Media Group and California Common Cause with Access Sacramento invite interested individuals, community organizations, local media outlets and elected officials to participate in a community discussion designed to hear opinions, stories and suggestions about our local media. The new presidential administration wants to create a more democratic media system and promote universal access to communications technologies. The evening offers an opportunity to share ideas that can contribute to these goals. It will also help us better understand how well our local media: print, television, radio and Internet serve their audiences.

The evening’s discussion will be recorded and a report submitted to local media and the Federal Communications Commission. Feedback may help establish federal policies impacting local media ownership, increased localism, the establishment of community advisory boards, radio and television licensing procedures, and more. To RSVP, call 456-8600 “0″

March 21, 2009 | 11:27 AM

This story tells me absolutely nothing about what is wrong with media and the way it is regulated. Reads like an advertisement for special interest groups. I’ll pass.

March 21, 2009 | 5:48 PM

Yes, Sacramento Media Group and Common Cause are special interest groups FOR REGULAR PEOPLE like you, Oracle. Only they don’t profit from their accomplishments: standing up for your rights. They are nonprofit, volunteer groups that fight FOR average citizens AGAINST true special true interest groups, like Verizon and Viacom, corporate entities that make the rich richer, strip average people of public interest programming, and collude with the FCC to take over what is owned by the public: the airwaves.
Come see Wilson’s film Sunday to become informed on a complicated subject. Most Americans do not know what rights they have in having a say about what is broadcast and how it is broadcast on TV and radio.
Most important, don’t let master politicians like our governor influence you with semantics (as he does in calling teachers a special interest group) into thinking special interest nonprofit groups that stand up against corporate Goliaths and politicians are tainted.
Despite your dislike of the article, come see “Broadcast Blues” and be informed!

May 18, 2009 | 7:18 PM

I thought that broadcasting blues was very informative of why deregulation is not okay. One business should not own one thousand different stations because believe it or not those channels are meant for important local news and are also great because you get your traffic updates and other things that someone in minneapolis would just not be able to provide. Also I thought it was great that she said things that I would never know about like how the FCC is colluding with corporations for what is most profitable.
It’s interesting to know that I can do something about it because I often hear about things that make my blood boil and don’t know what to do about it. I’m watching and listening to these things so I should have some say in how they are managed and not just corporations. It was very easy to watch but it really left me a nervous wreck. I have the president’s number now (some one said it at the end of the showing) so I might have to have a word with him. If not I’ll be writing a letter to Dianne Feinstein to say how important this issue is.

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