lundi 25 mai 2015

Freedom of the press

"When the United States was founded, there was an understanding of the first amendment that it has a double function: it frees the producer of information from state control, but it also offers people the right to information. As a result, if you look at postwar laws, they were designed to yield an effective public subsidy to journals in an effort to try to provide the widest range of opinion, information, and so on. And that's a pretty sensible model. And it goes back to the conception of negative and positive liberty. You have only negative liberty, that is, freedom from external control, or you have positive liberty to fulfill your legitimate goals in life - in this case, gaining information. And that's a battle that's been fought for centuries. Right after the Second World War, in the United States, there was major debate and controversy about whether the media should serve this double function of giving both freedom from x amount of control - that was accepted across the board - and additionally, the function of providing the population with fulfilling its right to access a wide range of information or opinion. The first model, which is sometimes called corporate libertarianism, won out. The second model was abandoned. It's one of the reasons why the US only has extremely marginal national radio businesses compared to other countries. It relates to what you're asking - an alternative model is public support for the widest possible range of information and analysis and that should, I think, be a core part of a functioning democracy."

Noam CHOMSKY, Why the Internet hasn't freed our minds, Alternet, May 21, 2015.
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