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Tis the season for giving!
Visit our Media Watch website and sign up for our monthly newsletter. We need your donations—any size is welcome. Remember, your gift to a non-profit is fully tax deductible.
May joy fill your hearts in 2012!


Tell the FCC that broadcast policy must benefit the public majority.
Television and radio broadcasters get to use our public airwaves for free. It’s a great deal … for them! For the rest of us, it’s just another corporate giveaway. These broadcasters rake in billions in profits using our public property without paying rent. And what do we the public get from them in return? Next to nothing. We need to put the public interest back into the public airwaves. Read more at Tell the FCC: No more handouts to big media. Please take action today!



The saying "no news is good news" takes on a whole different meaning in light of a new study out of Fairleigh Dickinson University. The study surveyed more than 600 New Jersey adults about current events and, later, what news media they consumed. The goal was to ascertain how informative and healthy certain news diets are.

What the researchers found out may not surprise you. For example, people who watch Fox News, the most popular of the 24-hour cable news networks, are 18 points less likely to know that Egyptians overthrew their government than those who watch no news at all (after controlling for other news sources, partisanship, education and other demographic factors). Fox News watchers are also 6 points less likely to know that Syrians have not yet overthrown their government than those who watch no news.

The study suggests that something specific to Fox News programs—not party affiliation—makes people more ignorant to certain questions. Read more at



Download a new prevention program on Violence Against Women from the UK. Guiding principle: Prevent violence against women and girls from happening in the first place by challenging the attitudes and behaviours which foster it and intervening early where possible to prevent it. (Thanks To Wendy Stock and Diana Russell for sending this in.)



Below is a sample email you might send to the company that sends global munitions into countries like Egypt. Read more here.

"Dear People who work at Combined Systems, Inc.:
I am writing to ask you to consider putting your good time and energy into a product and company that does not engage in harm to others. Your tactical munitions are being misused in Egypt and likely in other places as well. You profited from selling your product to Mubarak, one of the world's worst dictators, and your products were used during the January revolution in Tahrir Square, where thousands were harmed and many died. It must challenge your friends and family knowing you are contributing to overt harm and abuse being done to innocent people. Consider finding work that you can be proud of, even in this economy. You endanger your own family, co-workers and neighbors with your munitions, given the recent fire you had that nearly set off barrels of acetone. Luckily, workers were unharmed, but what of the air quality that day, and the people's health you endangered? Please remember you are part of global community and maybe you can start the new year by being part of the solution rather than a part of the problem. Thank you for your consideration and response. Sincerely, ..."

Send the email to Combined Systems management by copying and pasting these addresses: :,,,,,, and

EXECUTIVES: Mr. Don Smith Chief Executive Officer, Mr. Richard Edge Chief Operating Officer, Mr. Paul Ford VP of Sales and Marketing, Mr. Dennis Palmer Director of Law Enforcement Training, Mr. Jim Marth Director of International Sales, Sales: international Brenden Frisk. Address: 388 Kinsman Road, Jamestown, PA 16134, Phone:724-932-2177, Fax:724-932-2166, Tel: (888) 989-7800 Ext: 166, Western USA Bobbie Jo (888) 989-7800 Ext: 110, Eastern USA,Kristal Tel: (888) 989-7800 Ext: 129



In late 2009, Lynn Zwerling stood in front of 600 male prisoners at the Pre-Release Unit in Jessup, Maryland. “Who wants to knit?” she asked the burly crowd. They looked at her like she was crazy.
Yet almost two years later, Zwerling and her associates have taught more than 100 prisoners to knit, while dozens more are on a waiting list to take her weekly class. “I have guys that have never missed one time in two years,” Zwerling says. “Some reported to us that they miss dinner to come to class.” Read more here.




We’ve seen an escalating number of “pornahol” alcohol ads in the last few years; companies ARE using sexual innuendo and objectification to sell alcoholic beverages. The campaign for Diageo's latest Smirnoff flavored vodkas may have set the bar at a new low: Fluffed Marshmallow and Whipped Cream ("Fluffed" and "Whipped" for short.) Obvious much? Smirnoff’s new commercials are a smorgasbord of sexual images and allusions, with a little product thrown in for good measure. They feature the scantily clad model/DJ Amber Rose purring “I might choose fluffed. Then again, I might choose whipped. Either way, vodka never felt this good” over images of gyrating bodies and multiple close-ups of sticky wet lips … Read more here.



Check out the new Media Watch Blog post, "Art is Absent," examining Marina Abramovic's controversial M.O.C.A fundraiser with Deborah Harry.


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