FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
(Rochester, NY) - January 6, 2005 - The media watchdog group NEWSBREAKERS freed two live broadcasts today, one from CBS affiliate WROC Channel 8 and the other from NBC affiliate WHEC Channel 10.
The group temporarily reclaimed the airwaves in the name of the American people in protest of the wholesale failure of Federal Communications Commission licensees to honor their obligation to the public. Video of the liberation event is available at http://www.newsbreakers.org/video.htm
"As citizens in a participatory democracy, we can no longer idly standby and let our government offer the airwaves, our common property, to the highest bidder," NEWSBREAKERS senior political correspondent Buck Owens said. "Today's event marks a new chapter in media criticism. We are putting television news on notice: We're out here, we're watching and we ain't happy with what we see."
The group attempted to provide the television news employees on the scene with copies of the Constitution of the United States.
"The gift would have served as a reminder that the guarantees outlined in that document are bestowed upon journalists not by corporate leadership, advertisers, government bureaus, ratings agencies or the lecture circuit, but by We the People of the United States," Owens said.
Security personal detained NEWSBREAKERS members before they were able to offer the employees of the television stations the copies of the Constitution. A police investigation found no wrong doing on the part of NEWSBREAKERS. The members were released without charge. An investigating officer said that one of the news employees was "startled" by the event.
NEWSBREAKERS is a nonpartisan, nonviolent media watchdog group dedicated to the improvement of journalism. It offers comment and critique on the role of television news in informing the public. The group relies on parody and non-traditional media interventions.
The group is currently planning future events.
Contact: (212) 931-8548 or e-mail to: firstname.lastname@example.org