A new proposal pushed by the Biden administration would let the federal government decide what local news outlets are allowed to show you.
The Government Accountability Office (GAO) proposed a new policy to help local journalists “combat misinformation.”
According to the federal government, they need to step in to help create a “well-informed society.”
“[T]he market may not produce public interest content sufficient for a well-informed society,” stated the GAO. “Experts conveyed that the main goal of journalism is to have a well-informed society, and policies that aim to support this goal need to be innovation-friendly, forward-looking, and inclusive.”
Government involvement as proposed by the GAO would include tax incentives, direct funding, and even direct control over certain outlets – suggesting news organizations which bend the knee to the federal government would benefit from unfair advantages.
The report also argues that laws should be passed to prevent those same news organizations from being susceptible to market failure.
“According to literature and participants, direct government funding and tax incentives supporting nonprofit news organizations can be useful in addressing market failure if there are sufficient safeguards to ensure independence,” stated the report.
The GAO claims to believe that local journalism serves as a “public good” for society to help “inform democratic decision making,” including as it relates to investigations on critical topics, like COVID.
Essentially, the Biden admin is pushing to centralize where we get our information in order to make it easier to control narratives about controversial issues.
The agency even warns that the internet’s decentralization of news production and distribution, “poses a risk to public interest journalism.”
The GAO goes on to say that government control over local news outlets would create an opportunity for involvement in low-income communities’ news access, meaning it would be easier for them to push their messaging on the poorest segments of the population.
“According to stakeholders, the nonprofit model, financed by a combination of federal funding and philanthropy, could be a viable strategy for targeting low-income communities that find paid access to news restrictive,” stated the GAO.
The proposal was presented to the Federal Communications Commission (FCC), chaired by Jessica Rosenworcel — a vocal anti-Trump Democrat who criticized the former president’s stance on media – in particular his efforts to expose “fake news.”
Rosenworcel has expressed an extreme willingness to merge local news outlets with the federal government, stating back in March of 2020 that the COVID pandemic was “going to change local journalism.”
“We need local news to help us make decisions about our lives, our communities and our country. But this crisis is going to change local journalism,” she said at the time.