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Mobile Voices, Mobile Justice: A Strategy Session on Telephones, Wireless Policy, and Social Change

Mobile Voices, Mobile Justice: A Strategy Session on Telephones, Wireless Policy, and Social Change

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Published by MAG-Net
This report is published by the Center for Media Justice (CMJ), based on the discussions at the 2011 NCMR Mobile
Voices, Mobile Justice strategy session. Thanks to the staff of Consumers Union (CU) and CMJ for their planning,
coordination, and leadership of the strategy session; panel participants for their thoughtful contributions; and co-facilitators
for their strategic guidance. This report was written by CMJ Policy Director amalia deloney, based on note-taking
by Leticia Medina, Betty Yu, DeAnne Cuellar, and Leticia Miranda.
This report is published by the Center for Media Justice (CMJ), based on the discussions at the 2011 NCMR Mobile
Voices, Mobile Justice strategy session. Thanks to the staff of Consumers Union (CU) and CMJ for their planning,
coordination, and leadership of the strategy session; panel participants for their thoughtful contributions; and co-facilitators
for their strategic guidance. This report was written by CMJ Policy Director amalia deloney, based on note-taking
by Leticia Medina, Betty Yu, DeAnne Cuellar, and Leticia Miranda.

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Published by: MAG-Net on Jul 02, 2011
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09/07/2012

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 This report is published by the Center for Media Justice (CMJ), based on the discussions at the 2011 NCMR Mobile Voices, Mobile Justice strategy session. Thanks to the staff of Consumers Union (CU) and CMJ for their planning,coordination, and leadership of the strategy session; panel participants for their thoughtful contributions; and co-facili-tators for their strategic guidance. This report was written by CMJ Policy Director amalia deloney, based on note-takingby Leticia Medina, Betty Yu, DeAnne Cuellar, and Leticia Miranda. This work is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0United States License. To view a copy of this license, visit http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-sa/3.0/us/ or send a letter to Creative Commons, 444 Castro Street, Suite 900, Mountain View,California, 94041, USA.Published by the Center for Media Justice, May 2011.
The Center for Media Justice
436 14th Street, Suite 500, Oakland, CA 94612wwww.centerformediajustice.orgphone: 510-698-3800email: info@centerformediajustice.org
Permission is granted to use, copy, distribute, adapt, remix, and/or modify the contents of thisdocument for noncommercial purposes. Please cite the Center for Media Justice as the originalsource if distributing or reusing sections, pages, images or the whole booklet. Please contact CMJ,if you can, to let us know how you are using and reusing this material—we welcome your feedback.
OBILE
 
OICES,
OBILE JUSTICE
A Strategy Session on Telephones, Wireless Policy,and Social Change
Notes from the Mobile Voices, Mobile Justice strategy sessionNational Conference on Media Reform, Saturday April 9, 2011, Boston MassachusettsHosted by the Center for Media Justice and Consumers Union
 
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Mobile Voices, Mobile Justice
Introduction
 Telephones are one of the most important and useful modern inventions. Whether wireline or wireless, phones andphone calls connect us to one another, are a vital part of our communication system, and are the only access pointto the Internet for many. While some take this piece of technology for granted, for many of us—prisoners, low-income communities, immigrants, youth, and communities of color—phone calls and mobile access are a privilege,not a right.Black and Latino communities are more likely than the general population to access the web via cellular phones, andthey need strong wireless protections. According to a report by the Pew Research Center, 18% of blacks and 16%of English-speaking Latinos access the Internet only from their cell phones. Phones not only keep us connected, butcell phones play an increasing role in social movements. From the recent prison uprising throughout the South to thehundreds of thousands in the streets for immigrant rights, cell phones are a tool for communication rights. The fightfor telephone protections raises the opportunity for a broad and intersectional strategy that brings together mediapolicy and social justice advocates. As we transition to a new digitized economy, the power to communicate, and therefore imagine a better future,should belong to everyone. However, our media environment is one of massive corporate consolidation and fewconsumer protections; our media policies simultaneously support this consolidation and fail to represent theconsumers who are most affected by it. Without appropriate and thoughtful intervention, the digital divide appearslikely to become self-perpetuating. The failure of telecommunications regulatory agencies to deploy phone andwireless policies that reinforce equity, and the limited ability of public interest advocates to deploy culturally andgeographically appropriate strategies for change means that those who don’t have access to today’s computertechnology will face a hard time catching up in tomorrow’s technological economy.
 
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Mobile Voices, Mobile Justice
The Mobile Voices, Mobile Justice Strategy Session
National Conference on Media Reform
On Saturday, April 9, 2011, as a follow-up to a September Knowledge Exchange on the Universal Service Fund,the Center for Media Justice and Consumers Union brought together more than 80 individuals from over 45organizations across the United States and Canada for a strategy session to examine the role of telephones in thelives of under-represented communities, what’s at stake in telephone policy, and what can be done to improve policyconditions through grassroots organizing.Held as a two-part, three-hour “workshop within a workshop”—the session was held during the National Conferenceon Media Reform—Mobile Voices, Mobile Justice was specifically designed to bridge the divide between mediapolicy and social justice. Using a combination of moderated panel discussion, multimedia popular education,breakout groups, and strategic dialogue, the session was designed to provide policy expertise and engage theexperiences of participants to:
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Highlight the conditions created by existing telephone policy in key constituency groups
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Investigate the social impacts on those communities
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Identify grassroots strategies for change
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Create a broad and intersectional base of support to take on phone justice issues
Strategy Session Agenda
 All materials are available for use; links can be found in the resource section at the end of the report.
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Welcome
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Facing Race video clips
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Policy panel
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Popular education speed dating
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 Topic-specific strategic breakout groups
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Breakout group report back 
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Closing

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