Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Hearst's `Cosmopolitan' And The Politics Of Dynastic Media Monopolization

(The following article first appeared in the 9/9/92 issue of the now-defunct Lower East Side alternative weekly newspaper, Downtown.)

When it comes to editorial quality, Hearst’s Cosmopolitan may still not be too intellectually cosmopolitan these days. But when your magazine is chained to the Hearst Dynasty’s mass media chain, you’d better not be too intellectually cosmopolitan—or you might start wondering, in the interest of a healthy Democracy, why such a huge media company with all of the influence inherent to it, is still owned by just one small, extended family? Or you might wonder how democratic it is for someone like Patty “Tania” Hearst to still be slated to inherit over $100 million worth of Big Media stock in the 21st-Century?

But during the early 1990s, William Randolph Randolph Hearst Jr. seemed very pleased with his family’s position in the U.S. Big Media industry set-up. As he wrote in 1991:

“Every day millions of Americans read one of our many newspapers, magazines, other periodicals,…or books. They watch our TV stations and cable programming…Millions of others around the world read our overseas publications as well as view our broadcasters. Our comics and other features span the globe.”

Heil, Hearst!

(Downtown 9/9/92)

Next: Obama’s Hearst/Oprah Winfrey Connection

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