Starsuckers is a feature documentary about the celebrity obsessed media, that uncovers the real reasons behind our addiction to fame and blows the lid on the corporations and individuals who profit from it. Made completely independently over 2 years in secret, the film journeys through the dark underbelly of the modern media. Using a combination of never before seen footage, undercover reporting, stunts and animation, the film reveals the toxic effect the media is having on us all and especially our children. Chris Atkins presents Starsuckers as a series of five lessons on fame in the modern world: how children are persuaded that fame is something they want, how television and the media reinforces the importance of celebrity and the efforts to attain it, how the mind and body reinforces our need to follow the activities of well-known people and strive to join their number, how the press became addicted to celebrity coverage, and how the art of promoting fame has led to celebrities and their handlers controlling the press instead of the press having say. Along the way, Atkins demonstrates how celebrity news with no basis in fact gets into print, why newspapers will run press releases almost verbatim, how parents will eagerly sign away the image rights to their kids, how certain mass scale charity events end up helping the performers far more than the causes they designed to support, and how publicists keep accurate but unflattering stories out of the news.

Saturday, April 18, 2009

The Corporate TakeOver of Americas Newspapers

Read All About It: The Corporate Takeover of America's Newspapers is an institutional acknowledgement of what many wary readers have known for years: Corporate control is ruining our daily newspapers.

Oh, excuse me: I didn't mean to say "our" newspapers. It's just that I've always thought of daily newspapers as the guardians of our -- meaning the public's -- right to know. The guardians of truth, justice, the public welfare and all that.
But who am I fooling. America's daily newspapers don't belong to us. Nor, for that matter, do they even seek to serve us any longer. They have more important concerns now: appeasing advertisers and enriching stockholders. Read All About It, by James D. Squires, the editor of the Chicago Tribune from 1981 to 1989, explains why.

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