Public Interest Organization

Fair Media Council: Serving the public interest since 1979
Fair Media Council: Serving the public interest since 1979

Since 1979, the Fair Media Council has served the public interest in all matters relating to news coverage in the New York metro area.

A 501c3 nonprofit organization, FMC works to educate the community at large on how changes within the local media landscape impact the public’s right to know, as well as how organizations need to change tactics to effectively remain part of the public conversation in times of major shifts in the landscape.

Factors that impact the media landscape include, but are not limited to, the buying and selling of media outlets; change of ownership; change of editorial direction which may or may not be related to a change in ownership; programming changes; new media outlets being added to the region; news outlets being eliminated or merging with another outlet.

All of these scenarios play a major role in changing the quality and/or quantity of local news in the region.

The Fair Media Council advocates for quality local news coverage as necessary and vital to maintaining the health and well-being of the community at large. FMC seeks a variety of voices within a marketplace, to ensure a ‘checks-and-balances’ system within the daily creation and dissemination of news. Playing a vital role within the news ecology, FMC works to keep the news media responsive and responsible to the communities it serves.

FMC also works with the community, to help demystify media and help the community understand how newsroom decisions are made, and the process behind today’s headlines.

As FMC is instrumental in working with both the media and the community, it is the bridge that brings both entities together, to assist in establishing an open dialogue, build relationships and work to achieve mutual understanding.

FMC emphasizes working cooperatively with the media, whenever possible, to improve local news by helping to tap into the pulse of the public. FMC has, since its earliest days, regularly worked to inform the FCC and other regulatory agencies on the state of local news and of any particular activities that are deemed to be adverse to the public at large. As such, FMC is widely regarded as one of the oldest, most successful media watchdog organizations in the country.

As social media has grown, FMC has incorporated this aspect of media into all of its programming, thus ensuring the public is able to take advantage of having its voice heard to a variety of audiences, while underscoring the importance of responsibility within the public domain.