Who Controls the News?  Media Literacy in the Digital Age

Taught by Greg Retsinas, Director of Digital Media, KGW Media Group. Former reporter and editor with The New York Times Company.

Mondays October 5-26, 7:00-8:30pm  (second session: Mondays November 2-23)

Location: KGW Studios, 1501 SW Jefferson Street 

Four weeks, $79. Space limited to 20 students. Registration ends September 27th.

The rise of digital technology has had an unprecedented impact  on what we consider to be media in the US - for better and worse.   A century ago, the media was a landscape of business titans and small businesses. The Internet has shifted audience consumption patterns in viewership and readership changed, radically changing  what is considered newsworthy.  Big tech companies like Google and Facebook have reshaped the kind of information that is disseminated in democratic society and non-democratic societies.  Does unbiased, dependable news  exist in today's world? Does increased segmentation of viewership matter? Where do you fit - a news junkie or an occasional consumer or a discontented ex-consumer? This course will explore the existing and emerging conflicts facing the media industry, and what it means for how we stay informed in the digital age.

You will learn to:

- Spot media bias

- Understand how news coverage decisions are made

- Get your story out in the media

Week 1: Defining news, and looking at how the media industry arrived at today’s state. How did we get here? A quick review from the printing press to the smartphone.

Week 2: The emergence and impact of the digital age on legacy and established media. The overwhelming and nearly-fatal blow by the Internet on the media companies that have dominated our landscape.

Week 3: The role of global factors and big corporations and locally-owned media outlets. From conglomerates to VCs to mom-and-pops to foreign corporations, ownership today varies widely as do the content produced by those new business models.

Week 4: How tech companies will redefine the media, and what it means for consumers. The mobile-fueled generation is one where news doesn’t wait, but is the news better because it’s quicker and everywhere?