Where To Find Alternative News on the ‘Net and Elsewhere

  • Where To Find Alternative News on the ‘Net and Elsewhere
    A lot of folks have asked me lately about where they can turn to find news from outside the official sources, and where to find informed commentary and ideas that are excluded from the mainstream. Of course, I advise folks to find their local community radio station, if there is one, or local alternative newspaper (again, if present). On the ‘net these are a few of the sites that I’ve found useful and informative:

    (the associated
    press of the alt. weeklies)

    (unrelenting muckraking)

    grassroots newsgathering and analysis)

    news kiosk

    (news and opinion from an anarchist perspective)

    to their own and others coverage)

    (progressive radio & audio online)

    wired news (civil
    liberties are key)

    rounded int’l perspectives)

    magazine / znet

    (leading journal of progressive thought, run and organized
    in a progressive manner)

    If you don’t have a good local community radio station, don’t have good access to Internet audio or are away from your computer, then you can listen to Radio For Peace International on shortwave. They call themselves an international community station, and they’re worth tuning in even if you do have all the other resources. Right now they are airing Democracy Now! in exile, which is providing a 2-hour program of alternative news coverage each day this week. The program airs on RFPI at 0000, 0800 and 1400 hours UTC/GMT (or, for American shortwave newbies: 8:00PM, 4:00 AM and 10:00 AM EDT — subtract an hour when we switch back to standard time).

    A shortwave radio is a great tool to have in these times of crisis (and in general), since it allows you to access the voices of other nations and cultures in their own words. It takes some time and patience to tune in stations, especially those from more impoverished nations that are also far away, but worth it. It’s too bad, but as far as I know Afghanistan does not have any shortwave stations–I would like to hear what the Taliban leaders have to say in their own words, even if I won’t like much of what they do say.

    They typically have a few cheaper shortwave radios at stores like Circuit City or Best Buy. Radio Shack is a better place to look since they have several decent radios under their Realistic brand name. You’re best off with a radio that has digital tuning rather than the old analog slide rule, since digital is more precise and makes it easier to find a station if you know its frequency. This is no advertisement, but RS has a really nice portable radio on sale for $149.00 that I can recommend (model DX-398). I have the model DX-505, which I like quite a bit. I bought it on sale for $99, though I think it’s current price is $149.

    Once you’ve got a radio it helps to have a reference to find stations and frequencies–though just tuning around can be fun. I use and recommend the Passport to World Band Radio.

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