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What You Should Know / February 5, 2010

www.consortiumnews.com -- In past years when I talked to American progressives about the growing media imbalance – as the Right gained dominance in books, magazines, newspapers, talk radio and cable TV – a typical response was, “well, the Left is stronger on the Internet.” But now even that advantage is disappearing, as should have been expected. After all, the Right built its powerful media advantage by investing billions and billions of dollars over three-plus decades, first in magazines and various print outlets; later in national talk-radio syndicates; then in making Fox News the leading cable news network. So, it didn’t take lots of smarts to figure out the Right would use its money to conquer the Internet, too. And that is what is happening. Backed by deep-pocket conservatives, the Right has poured large sums of money into its Internet assets, integrating them with other media properties, helping star right-wing bloggers get rich, and still maintaining the veneer of “populism” – even making sure some sites look amateurish – to stay attractive to rank-and-file Americans.

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