The Media: And Then There Were Six
The first edition of Bagdikian’s classic The Media Monopoly identified 50 corporations that controlled the media. In subsequent editions, the number went from 29 to 23 to 14 to 10. In the newly-released sixth edition, there are now 6 corporations that dominate TV, radio, newspapers, magazines, movies and the Internet. Their power, wealth and influence are staggering. Barsamian interviews Bagdikian on a broad range of media issues. He reveals the hidden Nazi past of Bertelsmann, one of the six giants. He explains why the Justice Department’s anti-trust division went after Microsoft but has left other monopolists alone. He talks about the future of books and the perils and promise of the Internet and shares his recollections of the legendary radical journalists and publishers I.F. Stone and George Seldes. He tells how close he came to solving the Sacco and Vanzetti case. His account of his miraculous escape from Turkey and life in puritan New England will stir you in surprising ways. A memorable three-hour session with one of America’s finest journalists.
Interview by David Barsamian
Ben Bagdikian was the winner of almost every top prize in American journalism, including the Pulitzer. He was the former dean of the Graduate School of Journalism at the University of California, Berkeley. He was one of the most respected media critics in the country and was a reporter and editor for more than thirty years. The New York Times called him “an exemplar to a generation of journalists.” His landmark book The Media Monopoly was revised and updated with seven new chapters and retitled The New Media Monopoly. His autobiography is entitled Double Vision. He passed away in March 2016.