Pat Byrne

Media Response UNIT Action for a Democratic Media

Pat Byrne

THIS YEAR’S LABOUR PARTY CONFERENCE saw the launch of the Media Response Unit (MRU), a new project through which media workers and labour movement activists can fight back against the mainstream media’s onslaught on Jeremy Corbyn and the left.

In co-operation with other alternative media voices, the MRU will be challenging the right wing bias of the mainstream media and organising practically against it. We need to find better ways to undermine the conservative mass media. Likewise, we need to put pressure on the so-called liberal press – the Guardian and Independent – to get off the fence and actually represent the views of a big majority of their readers.

Most importantly, we have to hold the BBC and the private TV channels to public account, contrasting their stated commitment to balanced reporting with their consistently anti-labour movement bias. Passive acceptance of this misuse of power is no longer acceptable.

Of course, the only media we can really rely on is our own. Through the MRU project we will help bring together the many alternative voices in social media in order to enhance their impact. And we have to extend these alternative voices towards the establishment of our own online television and radio channels.

All of this is vital if we are to effectively reach wider layers of the public and build support for Labour’s new programme. If and when Jeremy is re-elected, the much bigger task will be to cut through the media bias and win the mass of the public to Labour’s exciting new radical platform. Only if we can do this do we stand a chance of electing a Labour government and beginning the transformation of British society.

In preparation for a future left wing Labour government, the MRU will work with others to develop a clear and credible programme for the democratisation of the media under a future Labour government. We have the opportunity to create a radical democratic programme for the future of media in society.

There will never be a better time to take action to transform the media. Why not join us in this task? If you are already involved in the media, let’s link our skills together. If you are not, then we will help to train you so you can make an impact.

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is a member of Westminster CLP and Westminster Momentum.