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Media: "a flowering of meaning"?

According to Adbusters, "The international audience finds it's own media, free from western bias." Oh really? Here in this cowntry* national and community tv channels continue to broadcast shows and news slanted towards the West or mimicking American tv, and the U.S. continues to make headlines or appears on our national newspapers' front pages almost daily. Are we still so tied to the U.S. that whatever happens there makes waves of tsunami proportions here? Or is it just the media that makes American news so important in the Philippines? Perhaps it works both ways? Compared to the US, how often do our Southeast Asian neighbors -- with whom we (once???) shared many cultural, historical, economic, and social realities -- make headlines in this cowntry apart from around the time of the ASEAN meetings, or if and when GMA goes on another of her junkets in the neighborhood, or if and when Filipinos find themselves in a tight spot in those countries, or if and when they have disasters of epic proportions? And what about tv shows like Howie Severino's i-Witness, which opens windows unto many previously unnoticed yet relevant facets of the Filipino world, why are shows like this not given prime time on national tv?

So it's nice to see that networks like Al Jazeera offer a different view on world news and issues, and have a different take on what comes first or what is important. I first heard of Al Jazeera on CNN and BBC as the source for video messages from the Al Qaeda and that's as far as my knowledge of it went, until now. My childhood friend Orlando de Guzman recently made a documentary on rido, the clan wars in Sulu, for Al Jazeera. Below is part 1. You can view part 2 at this link.

Al Jazeera has a cool English channel on Youtube. If our media big guns won't give us an alternative view on the world beyond our American-made shades, we can go and get it for ourselves.

*cowntry: country of cows


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