Monday, September 18, 2006

Humboldt Media Accountability Forum This Thursday

The first in a series of forums on media accountability will be held this Thursday night, September 21, at 6pm. I will be participating in a panel discussion with various local media decision makers. We will gather in the studio at KHUM, which will be airing the discussion live at 104.3 and 104.7 in Humboldt, and streaming online at The radio station put out a press release (below) on Friday calling the event a media roundtable and dubbing it "Media Talkback."

The idea for the event can be traced back to the June 6 CA Primary election when the Voter Confidence Committee held a press conference rejecting the election outcome and challenging the media not to report what can't be proven (unverifiable election results). That led to meetings with editors of both Eureka daily newspapers and then a pair of OpEds (T-S, Reporter).

In addition to election conditions, another theme I hope will be central to this event is he-said/she-said journalism, referred to in the press release below as "false balance." When I spoke to Eureka Reporter Editor Glenn Franco Simmons this morning to confirm his participation, he asked me what was meant by that. I did not pick that phrase but I know it came from conversations I've had with KHUM's Mike Dronkers about opinion being weighted equally with demonstrated fact. For example, here are three articles from the Eureka Times-Standard (1, 2, 3) in which I refer to either the law or a government report. In all cases, no effort is made to check the law or report. Fact becomes alleged fact and gets washed by the supposed balance of the opposing opinion.

Check this WDNC entry for more on the potential topics I'd like to see on Thursday.

* * *

For Immediate Release

Media Roundtable Discussion to Air on KHUM

Representatives from Humboldt County media will join a roundtable discussion on the issues concerning local media to air on 104.3 & 104.7 KHUM radio, September 21st at 6 p.m. The show is called "Media Talkback," hosted by KHUM Program Director and midday on-air personality Mike Dronkers.

Community members will have an opportunity to ask those participating in "Media Talkback" questions about how they shape local news, entertainment and information. Topics include false balance, what makes the news, and much more. Listeners may email or call the station with questions.

"People are always curious about the mechanics of media. By bringing together some of our local media makers, listeners can call in and get answers to questions they wouldn't normally be able to ask," said Dronkers.

Those participating in the roundtable discussion include Times-Standard Managing Editor Charles Winkler, KIEM-TV Station Manager Bob Browning, Eureka Reporter Managing Editor Glenn Franco Simmons, local blogger Dave Berman, KMUD News Director Estelle Fennell, Bicoastal Media Program Director Tom Sebourn, and Dronkers.

Listeners who have questions may contact roundtable participates by calling the KHUM request line at 707-786-5486 or by email at


Jessica Bigger
Promotions Director
KHUM,KSLG, & KWPT(The Point)
Office: 707-786-5104

Posted by Dave Berman - 11:21 PM | Permalink
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We Do Not Consent, Volume 1 (left) and Volume 2 (right), feature essays from Dave Berman's previous blogs, GuvWurld and We Do Not Consent, respectively. Click the covers for FREE e-book versions (.pdf). As of April 2010, paperbacks are temporarily out of print. Click here for the author's bio.

Back Page Quotes

"Give a damn about the world you live in? Give a damn about what you and I both know is one of the most shameful and destructive periods in American history? If so, do something about it. You can start by reading We Do Not Consent."

— Brad Friedman, Creator/Editor,; Co-Founder,

"If in the future we have vital elections, the "no basis for confidence" formulation that GuvWurld is popularizing will have been a historically important development. This is true because by implicitly insisting on verification and checks and balances instead of faith or trust in elections officials or machines as a basis for legitimacy, it encourages healthy transparent elections. It’s also rare that a political formulation approaches scientific certainty, but this formulation is backed up by scientific principles that teach that if you can’t repeat something (such as an election) and verify it by independent means, it doesn’t exist within the realm of what science will accept as established or proven truth."

— Paul Lehto, Attorney at Law, Everett, WA

"Dave Berman has been candid and confrontational in challenging all of us to be "ruthlessly honest" in answering his question, "What would be better?" He encourages us to build consensus definitions of "better," and to match our words with actions every day, even if we do only "the least we can do." Cumulatively and collectively, our actions will bring truth to light."

— Nezzie Wade, Sociology Professor, Humboldt State University and College of the Redwoods

"Dave Berman's work is quietly brilliant and powerfully utilitarian. His Voter Confidence Resolution provides a fine, flexible tool whereby any community can reclaim and affirm a right relation to its franchise as a community of voters."

— Elizabeth Ferrari, San Francisco, Green Party of California

"This is an important collection of essays with a strong unitary theme: if you can't prove that you were elected, we can't take you seriously as elected officials. Simple, logical, comprehensive. 'Management' (aka, the 'powers that be') needs to get the message. 'The machines' are not legitimizers, they're an artful dodge and a path to deception. We've had enough...and we most certainly DO NOT consent."

— Michael Collins covers the election fraud beat for "Scoop" Independent Media

"What's special about this book (and it fits because there's nothing more fundamental to Democracy than our vote) is the raising of consciousness. Someone recognizing they have no basis for trusting elections may well ask what else is being taken for granted."

— Eddie Ajamian, Los Angeles, CA

"I urge everyone to read "We Do Not Consent", and distribute it as widely as possible."

— B Robert Franza MD, author of We the People ... Have No Clothes: A Pamphlet for every American