Tag Archives: journalism

WATCH: Journalist Reporting on Ghislaine Maxwell Trial Burglarized, Research Stolen

Don Via Jr. 
December 24, 2021

Kristan T. Harris is a Wisconsin-based independent journalist and host of the talk news radio show The Rundown Live. A media organization who over the years, in addition to hosting several notable guests, has also made a name for itself reporting high-profile events such as the protest and riot at the Capitol on January 6th, and unrest in Kenosha, Wisconsin which led to the Kyle Rittenhouse shooting.

Pertaining to the latter, Mr. Harris was actually called to the witness stand during the recent Rittenhouse trial, as it was he who captured most of the crucial footage in the case.

Worthy of note, Mr. Harris is also loosely affiliated to The Free Thought Project, as I am myself a co-host to The Rundown Live.

Not shy to pursue speaking truth to power, shortly after a verdict was reached in the Rittenhouse case Harris decided to make the journey to New York to provide on-the-ground coverage of the trial of Ghislaine Maxwell. The partner of the late disgraced financier and convicted pedophile Jeffrey Epstein was accused of sex trafficking.

Despite the notable lack of proportionate mainstream media attention, Harris has been present at the courthouse every day of the trial, providing regular updates.

In a few short weeks, The Rundown Live has already distinguished itself for its coverage of the trial, being the only media outlet to publish the full unredacted transcripts of the prosecution’s witness testimony. Including Jane Doe #1; Epstein’s former butler; Jane Doe #2 AKA Katie; Jane Doe #3 AKA Carolyn; in addition to Annie Farmer; and FBI Special Agent Kelly McGuire.

The outlet published other bombshell revelations, and conducted numerous interviews with both mainstream and independent media — including the likes of Dan Dicks of Press For Truth, and Jason Bermas.

However recently Kristan Harris has garnered some less-than-desirable attention as well. On the evening of Wednesday, December 22nd, the AirBnB in which he was staying in Jersey City to report on the trial was burglarized.

Security footage of the break-in appears to show a man of average height and build in casual dark clothing and a face mask remove the air conditioning unit and making his way inside the residence. Just two minutes later he reemerges holding a green bag containing a laptop.

The contents of the laptop contained the last several weeks worth of research pertaining to the trial. While much of the material was backed up on a cloud, it is still an immense loss.

In a Facebook post about the burglary, Harris clarified to those inquiring as to exactly how the thief made his way inside, and exactly what was taken. Specifying that despite the numerous valuable items about the residence, the intruder seemed to know exactly what he was looking for —

“The weird thing is that it’s the only thing missing in 90 seconds. My door was locked. There’s better goodies here.”


“He took the air conditioner out the front air bnb window crawled through went through kitchen and ajared my door from the kitchen. Ripped open closet door and stole my laptop. There were other high priced items including a 350 pair of headphones on the bed and other stuff…”

What causes this to be of even greater concern is that this incident took place less than 24 hours after Ghislaine Maxwell’s sister Isabelle had taken a slew of photos of media personnel outside of the courthouse, including of Mr. Harris. Leading some to believe this may have been a targeted act.

This is certainly a bizarre coincidence, if not something more.

A statement on The Rundown Live Facebook page updating followers of the incident affirmed —

“We will not be discouraged nor intimidated from telling the truth”

When The Free Thought Project spoke with Kristan Harris, it became apparent that this incident only served to strengthen his resolve, while he also stressed the importance of independent media, stating —

“We are the only platform publishing transcripts straight from the stenographer detailing the victims testimony. It’s imperative that independent journalists continue to dismantle propaganda by becoming sought after sources by the public. If The Rundown Live was not crowdsourced to attend the Ghislaine Maxwell trial would we know as much about the trial as we do?”

For those wishing to support Mr Harris’s efforts to shed light on this case, a friend and listener of The Rundown Live took it upon herself to start a GoFundMe campaign on their behalf.

As for the trial itself, the jury has spent the last two days in deliberation following closing statements made by the prosecution and defense. It is expected they will resume Monday following a brief recess for the holidays.

GREAT NEWS: 58% of Voters Say that the Media is “The Enemy of the People”

According to a 2021 Rasmussen phone poll of 1000 likely US voters, about 58% of the American voting public views the media as the “enemy of the people.” Rasmussen Reports has this to say:

A new national telephone and online survey by Rasmussen Reports finds that 58% of Likely U.S. Voters at least somewhat agree that the media are “truly the enemy of the people,” including 34% who Strongly Agree. Thirty-six percent (36%) don’t agree, including 23% who Strongly Disagree.

Three questions were asked of poll participants:

  1. Do you trust the political news you are getting?
  2. How serious of a problem is “fake news” in the media?
  3. Do you agree or disagree with this statement: The media are “truly the enemy of the people”?

The wording of the third question echoed Trump’s 2019 tweet in which he said “Fake News is truly the ENEMY OF THE PEOPLE!”

Here’s how the entirety of the poll results broke down, as Newsmax reports:

  • 76% of Republicans agree with the “enemy of the people” phrase in describing the media.
  • 37% of Democrats agree with the phrase.
  • 61% of independents agree with the phrase.
  • 83% of voters believe “fake news” is a serious problem in the media, compared to 14% who disagree.
  • 92% of Republicans believe “fake news” is a serious problem, compared to 74% of Democrats. 82% of independents believe it to be a serious problem.
  • 37% say they trust the political news they’re getting, compared to 43% who don’t trust it. 20% are not sure.
  • 54% believe that most reporters who write or talk about President Joe Biden are attempting to help him pass his agenda.

Supermajorities of Republicans and Independents agree with the “enemy of the people phrase.” A significant minority of Democrats agree. A huge chunk of the population, >80%, views fake news as a problem. Many view the political news as untrustworthy and think reporters are trying to help Biden rather than report on the news.

Though the poll was conducted in July of 2021, it’s unlikely the news for the news has gotten much better, as the trend has been toward a more and more negative view of the media.

For example, a 2020 Knight and Gallup poll found that “only 20% of Democrats have an unfavorable view [of the media], and 66% say that attacks are not justified.” That number had gone up by at least 17% by the time of the Rasmussen poll, where 37% of Democrats agreed with the “enemy of the people” phrase, showing a strong trend toward distrust of the media.

That trend has likely only accelerated as more and more media narratives have proven false, namely its slanderous lies about Kyle Rittenhouse and false reporting on the Steele dossier. As Lara Trump recently told Fox:

This is nothing new for the mainstream media. In fact, they’ve been trying to tell us what they want us to hear and not the truth for quite some time now. And people have finally started to wake up in America and say, ‘Wait a minute, I don’t think I’ve been getting the facts from these quote-unquote journalists out there,’ because that’s not what they are at all. A lot of these people consider themselves to be political activists, and they disguise themselves as journalists. But I think it’s why you see the distrust in the media at an all-time high in our country right now because you haven’t been able to get the facts about a lot of things. They’ve been pushing a certain narrative for so long.

Noting the trend, Rasmussen reported on November 12th that a full 53% of the American populace now doesn’t trust the political news they’re getting. That’s up 10% from the July survey, a massive increase in the space of a few months. So, Americans’ view of the media is getting worse and worse as its narratives are proven false.







Crisis in Journalism: 50+ Questions No Reporter Dares Ask Joe Biden And His Campaign

Jordan Davidson
SEPTEMBER 4, 2020 

Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden doesn’t face the same scrutiny the media applies to President Trump. Whether it is due to gaffes, his inability to complete some sentences, or lack of knowledge on a subject, Biden has proven that interviews are not for him and the media has covered accordingly.

When Biden actually agrees to an interview or offers to take questions, most reporters simply ask leading, softball questions or merely state something for Biden to nod in agreement with. Many times, Biden refuses to take questions altogether.

If Biden ever decides to take questions from the press again, here’s a list of questions reporters wouldn’t dare ask him and his campaign for fear of risking their esteemed reputations as some of the loudest voices for Democrats.


How do you plan on enforcing a national mask mandate if you are elected? Should states that abide by your national mask mandate use police to enforce it? Won’t that necessarily create more interactions with cops at a time of tension?

Given its outsized role in the numbers of virus deaths in America, should there be a federal investigation into why New York patients were forced into nursing homes by Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s policy directive?

On Media

Why do you perpetually fail to take questions from reporters at your minimal number of press conferences?

Does your administration have any plans to address the censorship by big tech companies of conservative media and voices?

On Kamala Harris

VP pick Kamala Harris said she believed the women who accused you of sexual assault, but Biden denied their allegations. Has Harris changed her position on supporting potential victims of sexual assault?

Why is Harris bailing out rioters, including those who are suspected of shooting at police, murdering a friend, and a convicted sex offender?

On Rioting And Violence

Will you ever directly condemn Antifa and the Black Lives Matter rioters as the cause for the violence ripping through the nation’s cities?

Would you allow the National Guard into cities like Portland that have seen 100 days of violence, rioting, and even death?

What, if anything, can be done to stop the epidemic of violence in Chicago and other cities? Have their Democrat leaders failed the citizens there?

On Foreign Policy

You have repeatedly claimed that you moved into opposition against the Iraq War, which you championed as chair of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, soon after it began. Yet in 2003 and 2004 you didn’t utter a word of criticism of the war –it took until 2005 for you to change your stance. In July 2003 you called your vote the right vote then, and the right vote today. Why are you lying about your record on Iraq? How do you justify previously supporting and enabling the Iraq War? What effect will that have on your foreign policy agenda if you are elected president? How can we trust you will not lead us into another similar war in the future?

If elected, how do you plan on addressing the rising threat of China concerning intellectual property theft as well as their human rights violations?

Secretary of Defense Robert Gates was recently asked whether he would reconsider his remark that you have been wrong about nearly every major foreign policy and national security decision of the past 40 years. He declined. You can’t both be right. Why is he wrong?

You have publicly supported China’s one-child policy. According to numerous eyewitness reports and documentaries, this policy has forced women to be held down against their will, screaming, while their children were yanked from their wombs and ripped apart. Please explain how you can support this policy, as well as its American counterpart in abortion on demand, while still saying it is Donald Trump who is a morally unfit leader.

On Guns

In 2013 you suggested that people, especially women, acquire a shotgun for self-defense over an AR-15 because ARs are “harder to aim, harder to use.” Have you ever shot an AR?

You have expressed interest in banning the AR-15, but would you be in favor of banning all semiautomatic rifles? If not, why not?

How would such bans be enforced given the popularity of such guns? Who would compel American citizens to hand them over — the police?

On Sports

Should college sports come back this fall? If a vaccine is in place, how long would we need to wait to see if college sports can resume?

You recently praised NBA players for “moral leadership” and “using their platform for good” but have not acknowledged that they violated their contracts to protest the shooting of a man with an outstanding warrant accused of sexually and physically assaulting his ex-girlfriend. What are your thoughts on the morality of physical and sexual assault?

On Education

Data shows childhood development is dramatically harmed by online learning, but children have very little likelihood of harm from the coronavirus. Why would you force them to learn online?

Democrats claim they want more women in the workforce and more women advancing into high-level positions. How does forcing women to stay home to homeschool their children accomplish this goal?

On Women

The current data shows that working women have been disproportionately hurt in their careers and incomes by coronavirus shutdowns. How can you support such shutdowns and say you are pro-woman?

On Nancy Pelosi

The speaker of the House was recently seen violating local COVID-19 mandates to get her hair done without a mask at a San Francisco salon. Other Democratic leaders have also violated COVID-19 regulations to keep their comfort. What are your thoughts on leaders who don’t follow the rules that they create, encourage, and condemn others for not following?

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said she doesn’t believe you should participate in debates with President Trump, accusing him of trying to “undermine the elections” and disrespecting “the democratic process.” Do you believe that participating in debates where you can each share your opinions free of regulation or limitation violates these concepts?

On The Economy And Taxes

Would your plan to increase taxes hurt the economy’s recovery after the COVID-19 crisis?

You promised on the campaign trail in 2008 that the Obama-Biden administration would never raise taxes on anyone making under $250,000 a year. Virtually every fact-checker including the left-leaning PolitiFact says you broke that promise. Why should we believe you when you now promise that no household making under 400,000 a year will get a tax hike?

The trustees for the nation’s entitlement programs say they are insolvent and will begin lacking the funds to pay out their obligations within just a few years. How do you propose to fix this problem?

Your answers to many problems are raising taxes “on the wealthy.” The nation’s top 10 percent reported a cumulative income of nearly $5 trillion in 2016. That’s every penny they earned in that year. It is enough to fund the federal government for one year currently, with a bit of change. How is it mathematically possible to pay for additional tens of trillions of dollars in federal spending without either literally enslaving the rich or raising taxes dramatically on everyone — especially when we already have more than $100 trillion in unfunded liabilities for existing programs?

On Abortion

You reversed your long-held position to say you’re now in favor of taxpayer funding for abortions. What changed your mind about funding abortions?

How do you reconcile your Catholic faith and teachings with your pro-abortion stance?

Democrats in states like New York have passed laws effectively allowing abortions up until birth. Should taxpayers fund such abortions, particularly for poor women who can’t afford them?

Campaigning in South Carolina, you suggested that it would be a good thing for the United States to help fund abortions for women in poor countries to discourage overpopulation. Do you plan to use taxpayer dollars in this effort, and if so, what countries do you plan to target?

On The Environment

You have previously said you want to ban fracking but then claimed that Trump was lying about your position. Why is it a lie to say you want to ban fracking, when you said repeatedly you would ban or get rid of it?

You have publicly stated that climate change is a national and global emergency. Does its urgency outpace the coronavirus? If so, would shutting down the entire nation indefinitely be justified to also address climate change?

You and your campaign website have repeatedly warned of “increasingly intense hurricanes” and natural disasters due to climate change. According to NYT bestselling author and climate activist Michael Shellenberger, “hurricanes aren’t increasing in frequency,” and data shows that “deaths from natural disasters are at their lowest point in 120 years.” Why is your campaign making inaccurate claims about climate, and do you plan to correct them?

On Donald Trump

What if anything did you say to encourage the surveillance of Donald Trump’s campaign and associates before you departed the White House in 2009?

What is your plan to prosecute the corruption found inside the FBI, CIA, and Department of Justice’s top leadership to frame a Republican presidential candidate for treason?

On Democratic Leadership

Is Bill De Blasio a good mayor?

Is Ted Wheeler a good mayor?

Is Lori Lightfoot a good mayor?

Is Andrew Cuomo a good governor?

On Racism

Please explain to me how it is non-racist to tell black people they’re not black if they don’t vote Democrat.

Is the United States a fundamentally racist nation? Is it institutionally racist?

Do you regret saying that Mitt Romney and Paul Ryan intended to put black people “back in chains” in 2012?

On the Obama Administration

What did you know, and when did you know it, about the Obama administration’s weaponization of secret spy powers to undermine an election and illegally surveil Democrats’ political enemies?

On Immigration

Do you believe American taxpayers should pay the expenses of foreign citizens who illegally enter the United States, such as for food, health care, and education? Since the entire world has a lower standard of living than Americans do, why will that not encourage everyone who can to get inside our borders?

Should there be any criteria applied to those who seek U.S. citizenship? If so, what?

On America

What would you say are the top problems America faces today? In the next decade? In the next 50 years?


Jordan Davidson is a staff writer at The Federalist. She graduated from Baylor University where she majored in political science and minored in journalism.

How a Small Team of Journalists Overcame Facebook Censorship

Originally published by The Anti Media
Written by Alexander Rubinstein, March 3rd, 2019

Facebook seemed to have outdone itself again in its ongoing suppression of independent media when, earlier this month in coordination with CNN, it banned four pages belonging to a company that was not even accused of breaking any of the platform’s rules.

The genesis of In The Now’s ban is striking as it has never concealed its funding and it had been reported on years ago. Nonetheless, a U.S. government-funded neoconservative think tank saw a problem with In The Now and partnered with CNN to expose it. CNN identified the owners of In The Nowto Facebook and used yet another neoconservative think tank, which has been partnering closely with Facebook for the past few years, to scaremonger in its article about Russian meddling in American politics.

Now, Facebook is reversing its decision following outcry from the public.

Facebook’s advertising ban against RT — which was accused in a January 2017 Office of the Director of National Intelligence report of seeking to sow “radical discontent” in the United States during the presidential election, including with TV shows that did not air during the race — became a powder keg, leading to a new era of heightened hostilities in the U.S. establishment’s social-media information war. The measly 12-page document gave tech giants like Facebook, YouTube, and Twitter carte blanche justification to intervene against alternative media publications that were growing in popularity on their platform.

What followed has been a series of carpet bombings against “coordinated inauthentic behavior” and precision strikes against independent outlets like The Free Thought Project and The Anti-Media, and conspiracy showman Alex Jones’ InfoWars. In those cases, however, Facebook has accused the outlets of crossing red lines as a pretext for the bans.

In the Now, a small viral-video unit, and three of its offshoots, all owned by a company called Maffick, however, were not even accused of a red line before they were sent to Facebook prison in mid-February. Earlier this week, the pages were set free and allowed to continue promoting their journalists’ material on Facebook.

When CNN broke the story of the ban, they even admitted that it was an “unusual” step, writing:

“The move was an unusual one for Facebook. The company does not require users to provide information about parent companies, but it is rolling out ways to try to increase transparency about who runs popular Facebook pages, and it has been taking aggressive steps to tackle covert government-backed information operations on its service.”

While In the Now’s Rania Khalek, in interviews with MintPress News, characterized the Facebook ban as discriminatory against an outlet for its affiliation with RTIn the Now’s production is cutting edge, a rarity for its brand of anti-establishment reporting. The videos take a nod from a style popularized by the Qatar-owned AJ+, with hosts talking about the news with a critical, progressive angle, animated text, quick cuts and b-roll.

In contrast to similar video shops like AJ+ and Now This News, which give a progressive spin on domestic issues in the U.S., In the Now under Khalek and other hosts, like the previous iteration of the show under RT, has taken up anti-imperialist causes and has been critical of media hysteria around Russiagate. The host of the RT program, American journalist Anissa Naouai, went on to become the CEO of Maffick.

Of Maffick’s other outlets, Soapbox voices similar criticisms of empire, while BackThen takes a similar look at history, and its Waste-Ed focuses on environmental issues.

Since the January 2017 ODNI report, Facebook’s ban reversal on Maffick’s outlets has been one of the few victories for alternative media in the fight against mounting censorship online. Therefore, both how the ban came to fruition, how Maffick fought it, and where we go next are all worth examining.

CNN colluded with USAID-funded think tank

“CNN was digging around for dirt on Maffick, the holding company for In The Now,” Khalek told MintPress News. “Some of CNN’s correspondents were contacting freelance employees in LA, asking them about the company,” she said. Questions like “if they had anything negative to say, if the Russian government dictates our stories, etc.” Khalek continued:

“Eventually this got back to us and we contacted CNN and offered to give them access to us by giving them an interview. Drew Griffin, the lead reporter on the story, interviewed me and J Ray Sparks, the COO of Maffick. It actually felt more like a police interrogation, it lasted 45 minutes and the questions were incredibly invasive about our business structure. We were totally open about who funds us and about the fact that we have editorial control over the content.”

CNN even sent reporters to the homes of “people who work with us,” according to Naouai.

Griffin’s style of interrogation was previously laid bare by an absurd confrontation he had with an elderly woman named Florine Gruen Goldfarb outside of her home in February 2018. The grilling, captured in a video which is less than two minutes long, is one of the more bizarre data points in a saga that has included allegations that Russia used coloring books featuring a buff Bernie Sanders, hired 12 trolls to pose as a hacker that exchanged naked photographs with a former James Bond actress, and memes about masturbating with Jesus, in its quest to sow discord in the United States.

Embedded video

Alex Rubinstein@RealAlexRubiReplying to @RealAlexRubi

I can’t stop watching this 1861:09 AM – Feb 21, 2018137 people are talking about thisTwitter Ads info and privacy

CNN admitted in its article that it was tipped off by the German Marshall Fund to the fact that Maffick is owned by Ruptly, an RT subsidiary (51 percent), and by Naouai (49 percent). The think tank is funded by the United States Agency for International Development (USAID). Readers of MintPress News may be familiar with the dark history and cynical ambitions of the State Department’s “humanitarian” agency USAID. The German Marshall Fund, for its part, is among a handful of think tanks working overtime to combat supposed “disinformation” online.

The final version of the interview was published on CNN. But — as Kevin Gosztola, Shadowproof managing editor and co-host of a podcast with Khalek, noted — several discrepancies exist between CNN’s initial account of what happened and what can be heard in an unedited recording of the interview. Maffick COO Sparks was misquoted by CNN “twice,” Gosztola pointed out. Following the Shadowproof report, CNN issued a correction.

“Just the beginning”

Following an 800-page purge on Facebook in October 2018 that included independent media outlets with millions of followers like The Free Thought Project and The Anti-Media, German Marshall Fund senior fellow Jamie Fly told journalist Jeb Sprague with the Grayzone that they were “just starting to push back. Just this last week Facebook began starting to take down sites. So this is just the beginning.”

As MintPress News recently reported, Fly was a protege of neoconservative grandaddy Bill Kristol and was a member of his old think tank, the Foreign Policy Initiative. Later, Fly would oversee the German Marshall Fund’s Alliance for Securing Democracy, a project in which Kristol was also involved. The group, as MintPress News reported, played a critical role in hyping up the threat in the media of “Russian bots” following the 2016 election with its fake troll tracker the Hamilton 68 Dashboard.

Months after the October purge, the German Marshall Fund seems to have began targeting Maffick. German Marshall Fund social-media analyst Bret Shafer stated, “It should be clearly labeled” and “when they don’t label them, they need to be called out on that.”

In a press release, Maffick had the following to say:

“None of The German Marshall Fund’s financial backers are displayed on their own Facebook Page. [Yet] CNN continued to pursue a conspiratorial narrative, seeking and finding support from NATO member-based think tank The German Marshall Fund, ironically financed through a consortium of public-private entities led by government-owned German banking giant KfW.

CNN’s Drew Griffin interviewed recent intern with the U.S. State Department in Moscow Bret Schafer, who assured for the camera, ‘Oh they’re definitely state funded, I mean, you can pull the German registration data,’ conveniently restating facts of which CNN had already been informed in writing by Maffick themselves. Thus CNN engineered the false impression that there was potentially a sensational new Russian secret, perhaps even one Facebook should fear and one on which it should urgently take action.”

CNN also sought the expertise of serial smear artist Ben Nimmo of the Atlantic Council’s Digital Forensics Research Laboratory (DFRL). The Atlantic Council is funded by NATO, gulf monarchies and defense contractors, while its DFRL branch has partnered with Facebook in its bid to “identify” and “expose” supposed “disinformation” on its platform. As journalists Max Blumenthal and Jeb Sprague noted:

“[Nimmo] embarked on an embarrassing witch hunt this year that saw him misidentify several living, breathing individuals as Russian bots or Kremlin ‘influence accounts.’ Nimmo’s victims included Mariam Susli, a well-known Syrian-Australian social media personality, the famed Ukrainian concert pianist Valentina Lisitsa, and a British pensioner named Ian Shilling.”

In potentially one of the most bizarre interviews on mainstream media in 2018, you can watch mainstream media hosts with Sky News ask Shilling whether he is really a “Russian bot.”

Indirect government censorship

After CNN contacted Facebook, and even though Facebook found no rule-breaking on Maffick’s part, the social-media behemoth banned the pages. It was only then that CNN had found a news peg worthy of publishing its story, which had four CNN reporters signed onto it. Khalek told MintPress News:

“Basically CNN manufactured a story: They investigated us, then got Facebook to censor us due to our funding source and then boom, they had a story about a Russian-funded outlet getting banned by Facebook. And the fact that they did it at the behest of a U.S. government-funded outfit makes it even more alarming, because it means the U.S. government is using intermediaries to censor content it doesn’t like, in this case videos that challenge destructive U.S. government policies related to war and corporations.”

Discussing the piece on-air, CNN’s reporters didn’t exactly tout their investigative accomplishment. One of the reporters on the story, Donnie O’Sullivan, told CNN’s Brian Stelter, “Look, as much as I’d like to say we did a ton of digging on this, if you were to, you know, start googling these pages, you could quickly sort of work it back.”

Embedded video

Josh Campbell@joshscampbell

Investigation finds Russia is paying to produce viral videos aimed at Americans

@Donie on with @BrianStelter https://www.cnn.com/2019/02/15/tech/russia-facebook-viral-videos/index.html …6331:08 PM – Feb 17, 2019701 people are talking about thisTwitter Ads info and privacy

As to the content, O’Sullivan said, “You watch these videos; a lot of the points they are making are points that will resonate with real Americans, but we know that is what RT does.”

In a statement, Maffick said:

“The problem with Facebook’s response to CNN’s narrative is that it singles out Russian publicly funded media while falling short of publishing a clear public policy that would apply to a long list of other media Pages on Facebook. Facebook policies currently make such disclosure voluntary and few if any of the scores of publicly financed media outlets do so on their Facebook Pages.

Maffick’s public media industry peers, such as AJ+, BBC, CBC and others, have remained online throughout Facebook’s blackout of Maffick. By singling out Russia, especially the type of mainstream human-interest content produced by Maffick, Facebook risks setting a dangerous precedent on censorship that could inadvertently reinforce the xenophobic paranoia surrounding the controversy over alleged Russian involvement in U.S. politics.”

Towards a fair, consistent, comprehensive policy

While Facebook has lifted the ban on In the Now, the page contains a disclaimer about the funding of the parent organization. Facebook has offered wishy-washy responses as to whether other pages will be forced to make similar disclosures — telling Maffick, “It’s possible that’s there’s no other page” that will be made to but that it was also in the process of rolling out the policy.

In the interim, Maffick is calling on Facebook to be more transparent, stating in its press release:

“Facebook needs to publish policy that comprehensively applies to all businesses that are more than ten percent financed, either directly or indirectly, by any type of government funding, be it via direct tax, mandatory media fees or other transactional devices.

Americans and media consumers across the rest of the world deserve to have full transparency regarding who pays for the relentless stream of content with which they are daily presented. If they single out Russia, in the case of Maffick, Facebook will become political activists in the way they choose to selectively apply such policies, now and in the future.”

Khalek added:

“While it’s important that Facebook put our pages back up, they should release a clear policy about funding disclosures that applies to everyone. So far In The Now is being singled out. No other outlet that receives government funding is being required by Facebook to disclose it on their page. As it stands now, this behavior is discriminatory.”

Despite the victory for In The Now, Khalek thinks that the “conversation should be expanded to include corporate media outlets. It’s important that consumers know the forces funding the media they are consuming and that includes corporate forces, not just governments.” As MintPress News explored in its three-part investigation into eBay founder Pierre Omidyar, billionaires are able to leverage their cash to prop up scores of media outlets — an issue that has been ignored in the hysteria that the threat of fake news has spawned. In Omidyar’s case, experts believe one of his outlets has even withheld from publication documents that could hurt eBay.

12yo Girl Owns Cop for Threatening to Arrest Her for Her Journalism

Originally Published February 23rd, 2019
by Matt Agorist via Free Thought Project

Patagonia, AZ — If you have been to the Free Thought Project before, chances are you’ve seen one of the countless videos we’ve covered showing police officers threaten to arrest people for practicing their First Amendment right to film in public. However, the following video is unlike any we have ever seen, as the person flexing their rights is a 12-year-old girl, who runs her own news company out of Arizona.

Hilde Kate Lysiak is a reporter/publisher of the website Orange Street News—which she founded. Since she was in the single digits of age, this little journalist has been an inspiration to those who value dedication to the free press becoming world famous for being the first to report on a grisly murder in her town—at age 9.

Because Lysiak has been in the business for so long, even though she is only 12, she knows the ropes when it comes to filming in public. So, when she was approached and threatened with arrest for filming, she was undeterred.

On Monday, Lysiak was investigating a tip for a story in Patagonia when she was threatened with arrest.

We’ll let Lysiak describe the rest:

The OSN was biking down Roadrunner Lane investigating the tip at about 1:30 pm on February 18th when the reporter was stopped by Patagonia Marshal Joseph Patterson and asked for identification.

The Orange Street News identified herself as a member of the media, including name and phone number.

Despite providing this information to the officer, Patterson continued to press the girl.

“I don’t want to hear about any of that freedom of the press stuff,” said Patterson. “I’m going to have you arrested and thrown in juvey. “

According to Lysiak, Patterson had passed several other people on the street and didn’t stop any of them. He appeared to be targeting the girl specifically because of what she was doing—reporting.

“I can have you arrested, do you understand?” the Marshal said.

When Lysiak asked the officer what charges she would be arrested on, he replied, for “disobeying my command.” He then quickly changed his tone and said it was for riding on the wrong side of the road.

“I’m worried about your safety, the area you were in we were dealing with a mountain lion,” said Patterson after threatening to have this little girl thrown in a cage for daring to practice her First Amendment rights.

After briefly pretending to care about her safety, Patterson once again resorted back to threatening Lysiak.

“If you paste my face on the internet it’s against the law so I’m not giving you permission to use my picture or my face on the internet, do you understand all that?” Patterson said.

Ah, but this officer clearly hasn’t studied the law at all as multiple courts at all levels—state and federal—including the Supreme Court, have ruled that citizens can film cops in public.

As TFTP has reported, it has been clearly established that all Americans have the right to record the police. For an officer of the law to remain willingly ignorant of this precedent is at best, dereliction of duty, and at worst, unlawful deprivation of rights. Either way, this cop was in the wrong.

As the ACLU points out,

Taking photographs and video of things that are plainly visible in public spaces is a constitutional right—and that includes transportation facilities, the outside of federal buildings, and police and other government officials carrying out their duties.

Unfortunately, law enforcement officers have been known to ask people to stop taking photographs of public places. Those who fail to comply have sometimes been harassed, detained, and arrested. Other people have ended up in FBI databases for taking innocuous photographs of public places.

The right of citizens to record the police is a critical check and balance. It creates an independent record of what took place in a particular incident, one that is free from accusations of bias, lying, or faulty memory. It is no accident that some of the most high-profile cases of police misconduct have involved video and audio records.

When police refuse to have their public service documented and this refusal morphs into kidnapping and threatening children, something has gone seriously wrong. No one should ever face persecution for their first amendment rights—especially in the land of the free—and especially a child.

Because this officer was clearly ignorant of the law, these precedents did not matter and this ignorance was a threat to Lysiak who was told that if she posted the video, she’d be thrown in a cage.

However, Lysiak showed no fear, and after the incident, she published the video on her YouTube channel where it has gotten over 58,000 views. She also covered the story on her website.

Lysiak could’ve simply listened to Patterson and cowered away. However, she chose to assert her rights instead. Because she did so, Patterson’s department is taking disciplinary actions against him.

After receiving so many complaints about this officer, the town of Patagonia posted the following statement on the front page of their website, noting they took action.

“The matter has been carefully reviewed and we have taken action we believe to be appropriate for the situation,” the statement said. “We do not publicly disclose personnel actions including discipline and will have no further comment on this matter.”

In a society where obedience to authoritarians is the norm and peaceful rights-flexing disobedience is the exception, TFTP would like to personally thank Hilde Kate Lysiak for her courage in the face of tyranny. Bravo.