FAIR, the national media watch group, has been offering well-documented criticism of media bias and censorship since 1986. We work to invigorate the First Amendment by advocating for greater diversity in the press and by scrutinizing media practices that marginalize public interest, minority and dissenting viewpoints. As an anti-censorship organization, we expose neglected news stories and defend working journalists when they are muzzled. As a progressive group, FAIR believes that structural reform is ultimately needed to break up the dominant media conglomerates, establish independent public broadcasting and promote strong non-profit sources of information.
Uniquely, FAIR works with both activists and journalists. We maintain a regular dialogue with reporters at news outlets across the country, providing constructive critiques when called for and applauding exceptional, hard-hitting journalism. We also encourage the public to contact media with their concerns, to become media activists rather than passive consumers of news.
FAIR publishes Extra!, the award-winning magazine of media criticism, and produces the weekly radio program CounterSpin, the show that brings you the news behind the headlines. In addition, we have a thriving listserv through which we distribute regular Action Alerts to our international network of activists– as of September 2004, the FAIR list has over 55,000 recipients, with more signing on every day.
For an in-depth explanation of FAIR’s critique of the mainstream media, you should start with our overview, What’s Wrong with the News? You might also check out the article What’s FAIR?, by FAIR founder Jeff Cohen. And see what journalists, activists and scholars have to say about FAIR.