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The new and improved "Censored," detailing the top censored stories and media analysis of 2020. Our nation's oldest news-monitoring group, Project Censored, refreshes its longstanding yearbook series, Censored, with State of the Free Press 2021. This edition offers a more succinct and comprehensive survey of the most important but underreported news stories of 2020; in addition to a comparative analysis of the current state of corporate and independent news media, and its effect on democracy. The establishment media sustains a decrepit post-truth era, as examined the lowlight features: "Junk Food News"-frivolous stories that distract the public from actual news-and-"News Abuse"-important stories covered in ways that undermine public understanding. The alternative media provokes a burgeoning critical media literacy age, as evaluated in the highlight feature: "Media Democracy in Action"-relevant stories responsibly reported on by independent organizations. Finally, in an homage to the history of the annual report, the editors reinstate the "Déjà vu News" feature-revisited stories from previous editions. State of the Free Press 2021 endows readers with the critical thinking and media literacy skills required to hold the corporate media to account for distorting or censoring news coverage, and thus, to revitalize our democracy.
Andy Lee Roth is associate director of Project Censored and coordinator of the Project's Validated Independent News program. His work has appeared in YES! Magazine, In These Times, and scholarly journals including The International Journal of Press/Politics; Social Studies of Science; and Media, Culture & Society. He earned a PhD in Sociology at the University of California-Los Angeles and a BA in Sociology and Anthropology at Haverford College. Roth has taught courses in Sociology at Citrus College, Pomona College, Sonoma State University, the College of Marin, and Bard College, and he serves on the board of the Media Freedom Foundation. Mickey Huff has been director of Project Censored (founded in 1976) since 2010; president of the nonprofit Media Freedom Foundation since 2016; and cohost and executive producer of The Project Censored Show on Pacifica Radio, since 2010. In 2019, he co-authored United States of Distraction: Media Manipulation in Post-Truth America (And What We Can Do About It) and won the Beverly Kees Educator Award as part of the James Madison Freedom of Information awards from the Society of Professional Journalists, Northern California Chapter. Currently, Huff is professor of social science and history, and co-chairs the history department, at Diablo Valley College, San Francisco Bay Area, and is a lecturer of communications at California State University, East Bay. Huff also serves on the editorial board for the journal Secrecy and Society, the advisory board at the crowd contested media site Credder.com, as well as the board of the nonprofit Behind the Headlines.
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