tv Key Capitol Hill Hearings CSPAN August 15, 2014 4:30am-6:31am EDT
age that what this was, so get them early and teach them, and support the programs that do that. >> i hope you will take a copy of her article which is outside. you will find one of the best. more. going to take one i asked the aba question and not a commentary. >> i'm going to take two minutes of your time. and tell you who i am. why i came here 45 years ago, title of this gathering is the future of the news, i feel i have moral obligations to you all to tell
ea about the past of the news. the troubles for this country faced. i will add one more thing. those troubles have their seeds in georgia. atlanta, georgia. i'm a structural engineer. iname to the united states 1969. 45 years. i got my masters degree in 1971. with one mission in life, degrees are not important. money is not important.
positions, not important. citizenship, i am right now citizen of two countries. the united states and iraq. neverne in citizenship, subordinate your country to a pocket book. once you do that you violate rule one. here,hen i came to speak me i'm nottold supposed to carry those documents in my hands. i'm going to give those documents to those gentlemen. they will see the horrible things going on. respectful. be very could you -- this is a q&a
session. would you put the question to our panel? >> i'd be glad to. if somebody told you that some of the major media in this nation kept the american people in the dark about major events, and this question is addressed to all three, if somebody told you that, intentionally cap the american people and the world in the dark, if somebody told you that, what would you tell him? >> that we have failed if we have cap american people in the dark about any significant event. i have served in several cnn.ions, chairman of
if we have kept the american people in the dark on any major significant event and we have failed our jobs. i hope that we have not. i would be pleased to answer specifically what topic we may have kept from the american people. i'm not going to comment on that. i would agree with what tom said. we would have failed. sometimes there is information we don't report on because we don't deem it to be newsworthy, or verifiable. >> no comment either. the "new york times." >> our job is to get out the facts and not withhold them. >> i'm going to give you documents. you study them and research them. themere is an accuracy in
i am liable for them. your answers were not satisfactory. i need you to apologize to the american people. >> we will see. we have time? one more question? >> i have a question about google news. , --developer does the press media love google news? would you rather have a penny a click for looking at your stories? from the business model where do you see google news? google in every business we have worries me. [laughter] we spend billions of dollars providing internet across the country and they are starting up
with new google fiber business. in newsday disseminate news around the world. in general they motivate philosophy to positively impact a billion lies. they seem sinister. there is nothing bad about it. they just disrupt our businesses. in the grand scheme of things, disruption is a good thing. [laughter] power younds me of if he or sheking was asked would you rather have the internet around or not? wish -- some you people might say, i wish it never came about. it has destroyed our business. others would say, it is the best possible thing to happen.
others would say it is the best possible thing to happen. i put myself in that camp. that's a macro way to answer your question. >> i would like to conclude by thanking everybody for coming here today, especially thank the two of you. margaret's recent column. the question is -- are today's journalists doomed? free fall business in or are they coming into a media world bursting with new possibilities? view that you will be coming into a world bursting with new opportunities. thank you all very much. [applause] >> you have got to help me down. [captioning performed by national captioning institute] [captions copyright national cable satellite corp. 2014]
>> coming up on "washington jeffrey on the obama administration's fiscal policies. william greider. johnson on the changing demographics of the 65 and older population. "washington journal" is live every morning at 7:00 eastern on c-span. >> today a look at the continuing conflict between russia and ukraine. a discussion starting at 12:30
here on c-span. >> this month c-span presents debates on what makes america great. issues spotlight with in-depth look at veterans health care, and campus sexual assault. new perspectives on global warming, fighting infectious tour,e, and our history showing sights and sounds from historic places. let us know what you think about the programs you were watching. call us or e-mail us. join the conversation. like us on facebook. follow us on twitter. >> a discussion on media
startups with jonah peretti. mix of lightt the content and serious news of buzzfeed. this is 25 minutes. >> it is going great. you have read of a buzzfeed article today? >> today, wow. >> how about in the past week? >> what is buzzfeed today? >> one of the reason i started thinking about the history of media was when i would look for comps. what are other companies that are similar to buzzfeed that we
can aspire to be like when we grow up. it was really hard to find any. when you look at facebook or twitter, we are not a tech startup. when you look at time warner or disney or viacom they are these giant companies with multibillion-dollar -- billions in profit that are using cable and broadcast, they are very different from what is feet is doing. -- from what buzzfeed's doing. the companies that i find that are the most similar are media companies in their first 10 or 20 years and you look back at newspapers and magazines at hollywood studios. they're similar to buzzfeed. >> a lot of people see buzzfeed to read funny list or -- lists or cute pictures of puppies or kittens.
>> we started as a site that as a lab. what people cared about was cute kittens, whether friends had for lunch, things like that. entertainment content. to the point where people were sharing longform journalism and news and entertainment. and so we hired and smith about three years ago and he started building out a new same. we have investigative -- and investigative team. he has been hiring a lot of oppression of reporters. they are doing longer-term investigations. we have two reporters in the ukraine. so we have been expending a lot in the last year or two years.
>> what percentage of readers are engaged in journalism as opposed to the cute lists and frivolous content? >> it depends on the time so on the boston bombings happened there was the most popular content was all hard news content and we had reporters covering the bombings and people in new york who are using their knowledge of twitter and instagram to figure out what was going on in the web. we were the first site to authenticate twitter accounts because we noticed that the avatar predated the pictures that was in the news.
we looked at who was following the account and they all went to the same high school. we were able to figure out what was happening and follow-up with reporters making phone calls. during those moments most popular content is news content. during slow news the most popular content is things like 23 animals who are extremely disappointed in you. what city should you actually live in, things like that. >> how are people discovering the journalism fund thing? >> as you look at facebook you see hard news next to cute kittens and when you see that max. we decided why not do that because people like to move between different types of content.
it is hard to put things in terms of percentage. back to looking at the history of media. one of the things i found interesting looking at the early history of newspapers was there was limited space. you had to make these decisions because of limited space about how much news and advertising you're going to put. how much serious and how much frivolous stuff. the new york times and the herald tribune were in the battle to be the number one paper in new york and to be the number one paper in the country. and there was newspaper rationing, paper rationing. there was limited space. there was less stuff to print on. the herald tribune shrunk the size of the noose of the could keep their advertisers happy and
made huge profits and the times had limited space to cover news. and so they lost money during the war but when the war was over their circulation was higher in all the advertisers came back to "the new york times." the decision of how much do you use your limited resources for ads or, to use for news really meant something. what is different about the internet is would you not have to make that choice. we can say we're going to do all the news we can possibly do because the internet never runs out of space. we will do all of the cute animals and quizzes and lists because we are not going to run out of space and we will do all the rented content and all those things can exist in their track without scarce resources.
that has created a really interesting opportunity to build the media company that does not have the normal constraints. >> other times when there is different focuses come into conflict with one another? >> we have a tremendous food and food section and the test kitchen where we are making incredible [inaudible] and it is awesome stuff. many people are discovering it through pinterest. so there is not this conflict. not so much -- media is a -- less about adjacency. and that is why there is conflict.
there is a lingering legacy of print where people think that if you do one thing image you cannot do something else. that is not true. people who are used to the newspaper dropped on your doorstep and you can count the pages that are in sports and foreign news and how much ads, if you take that calculus, buzzfeed is a weird site. there is no constraint on what you can do and there is no adjacency is things are spread on different platforms. the new start understand -- then you start understanding what we are doing. >> there is a -- how many times do people come across a serious article and doubt the
credibility because there is the buzzfeed brand? >> the classic network television, you had edward armour road during the evening -- edward r. murrow doing the evening news but you had soap operas in the morning and comedy shows and variety shows treaty had alfred hitchcock on the same network and people are used to having that mix. i think the bundle is something that has always been so important to media. a lot of the journalism wars were between papers fighting over the comics. "the washington post" when it was bob are the family, he said to his deputies, do comments
matter -- comics matter, he had to fight to get the comics in the paper and it was a big protected anymore because fewer people would read the journalism if the comics were not there. the comics to of more readership of the journalism. it is something that our news content reaches a much larger audience than it would if we didn't also have under 200 million video views a month and massive amount of viewership on quizzes and lists. >> there has been a lot of new media startups that have been launching recently. why do you think there are so many media startups happening? >> media startups are more of a thing now than they have an in a long time. there have been a lot of tech startups.
if you look at the history of media, new technology emerges that is a distribution technology. the technology starts to get dealt out and people start creating content companies that take advantage that did not exist before. a lot of people do not know the story at cnn. wtbs was ear -- owned by ted turner. we -- you could, ted turner realized i could beam my local station by satellite and then it seemed like he will was an exciting new thing. people thought why would anybody want to watch the local television station. in phoenix or new york or
somewhere else but he started licensing television shows and movies and lots of other kinds of entertainment. in started to be a distributor of this kind of entertainment. when he saw the adhesive event there is going to be someone to dominate news on cable and he started cnn. it was interesting he started with entertainment and moved into news. at the time, the networks were spending $200 million year to do half an hour of news on the evening news and the plane was just made 20 to $30 million to do news 24 hours a day. everyone thought it was impossible. you could cover things in ways that you could not if you only had a half hour.
he had this else in advantage to -- that make content fit with distribution. it has grown into a jane company. when you look at or with time, this papers were exploding. time said let's aggregate the newspapers. people would listen on the radio and they would hear someone's voice. life magazine let people see what people liked. when you look across or even radio. people thought he would go back to cigars because cigars are much better business than radio.
no one would stand for ads that interrupted the flow of audio and radio. the key is the reason there are so many media startups is because there is an explosion of distribution technology. whether it is radio or new printing presses or cable television there follows close kind an explosion of new kinds of media companies. with smartphones and social media you're saying the ability to distribute media internationally more quickly than ever before in history. lots of companies have started to form to take advantage of that map of distribution that did not exist five years ago. when buzzfeed started the iphone did not exist.
that is -- has enabled distribution that people do not think was possible. >> is there a point of saturation where there is only so much that media startups can grow in room for only so many con a unlimited distribution context ofthe unlimited distribution? >> there used to be what people called natural monopolies. if you are the biggest newspaper in philadelphia you would have a natural monopoly. you had the big printing press and had the trucks to drive the papers around and who else can start something to compete with you and the argument was on the web we would never see that happen. any blogger can start a site. there is no limitation of space. likewise with radio. there is limitation.
if you get a slot on the dial you have an advantage. you have -- what you're saying is the competitive advantage is having to come from technology. it is the ability for editors to make content more quickly. pages loading faster and better data to optimize your site. the way that you build competitive advantage is in technology. that is why we have a focus on building technology. that is why companies are focused on that. >> what is the future role of
technology in media? >> you cannot tell a good media company unless you have great technology. >> is that limited to the platform or is it beyond the lab form moving forward in terms of hiring data scientists? >> we build a lot of the tools we use everything that allows us to make a better product because all the pieces fit together. some sites -- everything is powered by some other start up and they are stapling them altogether. that is a better approach. i think there will be some startups that into modifying the layers. google analytics will be used by people because no one wants to build their own platform from scratch or something like that. it is still up for grabs which
players will end up eating -- being outsourced to other tech companies in which one should -- will polacek -- publishers build themselves. i think there will be several -- when you look at cable or newspapers and you see that there is this cycle where people who build a better platform and of attracting better talent and that talent ends up improving the platform and it is a cycle. there will be several companies in this current crop of new companies building media businesses that get that cycle going. and becoming big players and building companies that will last for a long time. if you work that buzzfeed they should be able to reach a larger audience and have better
understanding one of how people -- understanding of how people work. so we're focused on building that cycle and other people are also -- also have a similar focus and that will lead to interesting new companies that will keep growing. >> given that there is this rise of the new media startups and given that you do not think that there is a saturation point, what advice would you have for someone who is launching a media star today? >> i think it is good to look for new emerging platforms that people laugh at and think are not that important. people laughed at radio and cable when ted turner went to cable. looking for areas where people
think this is silly and this will never amount to much is often a good base to go because other people are not there and you can figure out how to build some guys unique for you a new distribution platform. we thought we would be a new site focused on social. we saw social becoming the dominant way of how people consume news and entertainment. mobile became better than pc's and that was not something we predicted or expected that we were interested in social almost for election reasons more than anything else. being interested in something when it is small have a deeper understanding and a unique approach before something that everyone is chasing.
>> what are some of the lessons that people should look into, such as lessons learned from old media? >> every big media company was once a started. if you look at cbs there is not that much you can land because they are a giant and your small and starting out for you if you look at them when they were losing money, that looks like a lot of startups. when you look at time magazine that looks like a lot of new media startups that are starting today. people do not realize, i was surprised reading about the early days of hollywood that you would go to a movie theater and you would see a bunch of short films and then you would see in israel updating you about the war or something and then you
would see a 60 minute western. that is what you paid to see. people look at startups in the media space and they are doing these small, silly things. they're not like these big movie studios but if you look at what paramount was doing, they were making short films that are more similar to what we are doing on youtube than they are to the future films they're doing today. it is a case where there is something to learn from history. there is lots of differences. old media companies are the model and there is lots of interesting lessons to learn. >> do you have a list or what would it look like if you were to give advice or wrap up the history of old media in a list?
>> i am not as good at lists like the pros at buzzfeed. newspapers, early magazines, early hollywood studios, and early cable television and those are huge interest trees that wound to be multimillion dollar industries. when you look at their early days it is shockingly similar to the way small media startups are operating now. it would need a better name created by an editor and not by me. >> it looks like we're just about out of time. we have some time for questions.
we have a question every year. -- over here. >> you published the 96 page report of the new media people as to what they need to do different. good advice. did you see some lessons and therefore new media companies, what they need to do differently based on the new york times research of where media is headed? >> it depends a lot on what the new media company is. certainly mobile is huge and cannot be ignored. if there is a new media company that are not thinking deeply about mobile they should create -- they should be.
that report was -- had a lot in it. there's also the question how do you focus. there's a lot of good ideas that you can only focus on a few things. there is the question of what are you going to focus on if you are a particular company. you still have to stay focused. sorting through all the good ideas is sometimes the hardest part. even harder than coming up with them. >> other questions? >> do you see yourself as a media company, getting into other media like conferences and events that you stage and record for your own purposes? and other areas. >> we do some of that. we interview people like jerry
seinfeld and anthony weiner and the ceo of hbo. it is an interesting way to generate media as a live event. there's a trend of live events that is pretty interesting.h it. you are seeing that with the super bowl and industries like this one. >> any questions? ask you one right here. -- you one right here. it will be quick. >> i want to tell you how much i isk at your business model.
am from atlanta. you are absolutely right. it would mean nothing if it wasn't for him. he is in his 80's and lives in new york. in his book reads was that -- reese was the one took them to atlanta. they lived in a flea brag hotel -- fleabag hotel. >> i read his story. lots of amazing there is -- of the-- stories entrepreneurship. running theactually news operation.
>> t coming up, journalists discussed the role of race in the congressional elections. a communities of color are being portrayed by the media. it will be live from the asian american journalists association. we will have more from the convention about asian communities, also live on c-span. >> here are some of the highlights for this weekend on c-span. tonight, a history tour looking at the civil war. saturday, the communicators. sunday, q&a. pat buchanan. books on hillary clinton, barack
obama, and edward snowden. helper --daniel halper. tonight, the negro league's kansas city monarchs. saturday, the civil war: slavery in the movies. let us know what you think about the programs you are watching. call us. or e-mail us. join the c-span conversation. like us on facebook, follow us on twitter. >> the national business group on health released its annual theings wednesday on how nation's largest employers are changing their health care coverage and working with aca. the news conference about the report is a half-hour.
>> good morning, everyone. health isal group on a nonprofit membership-based organization. we are devoted primarily to finding health care solutions and health improvement for large employers. we also support among public policy. we are not a lobbying organization, but we do provide information, research, and education. we will be sharing a presentation which will be referred to in the slides in your deck. i will start with a bit about the survey.
it is a forward-looking survey. what is significant about it is the timing. it gives them time to plan for annual and roman and get things ready for january 1. it gives you good insight into what employers are thinking to do and what they are actually going to do in 2015. what the project costs to be as well as what changes they are foring to do, but will do 2015 and what are the implications. perspective,aphic the survey covers a wide spectrum of industries. just about all the major industries are covered. no one industry dominates, no
one sector dominates. it is a good representation of the market. from the employer perspective, these are very large employers. 83% of them have over 10,000 employees. employees or000 more. large companies. large companies typically self fund health care. they don't just pay premiums to insurance carriers for coverage. and the pay claims for medical costs and administrative fees out of their general assets and their fully at risk for those costs and they to use thealth plans networks. one of the questions we asked employers is what do they expect costs to be for 2015 and what
are they projecting costs to be for 2015? to beers expect costs about 7% higher than about 6.5% higher in 2015. karen is going to get into some of the initiatives that .mployers are pursuing the net impact is roughly a 5% increase in 2015. budgeting an increase for 2015. what does that look like? if you are a large company that spends half $1 billion on health increases $255% million. that is 25 million dollars in additional headwinds in 2015 that they have to find ways to offset through increased revenue
or looking at productivity, sometimes that relates to jobs or defects earnings per share. -- it defects earnings per share. fects earnings per share. it has a significant impact on the bottom line. the impact on employees if you think about cost-sharing, the percentage of the premium they pay has been pretty consistent over the last several years and will remain consistent in 2015. most employers are paying about 80% of the premium for employees. if you think about annual and roma than the impact for employees, employees can expect to see about a 5% increase on average for their contributions as they look to 2015. interesting to note that spousal coverage, employees pay about
24% of the premiums for spousal coverage. that has been creeping up over the last number of years. as employers look at their medical plans, if a spouses coverage through their own employer, employers are beginning to charge more if they like to stay on their employer's plan rather than go with the spouses plan. -- the spouse's plan. if you look at the price drivers, they are the usual suspects. they are typically high-cost conditions.ategory ie interesting thing when looked at the data is that we asked with the top three cost .rivers for employers were
specialty pharmacy. its is significant because impacts a small percentage, 2% of your population. if it is considered to be your second or third primary driver for cost of overall cost -- they are very focused on the potential impact of that as they look at 2015. another question we asked employers was around the excise tax, which is blooming up there for 2018, and what employers are to minimize or delay the impact. employers are looking to put their arm ploys in the drivers seat. in the drivers seat.
they are arming them with shopping tools, moving to consumer directed health plans or account based plans, they are building in incentives or have continued incentives for wellness programs and health care management. they're working with employees to engage them and how to best manage their health care costs and really partner with them on this. inn the excise tax hits 2018, it will affect employees and employers most likely. to the extent we can engage in partner with employees and help them put them into the drivers seat to manage costs with us, then this can be a more effective way of delaying and minimizing the impact. another area of interest is the private exchanges. study,d employers in the what activity or what decisions have they made over the private exchanges for 2015?
we continue to see movement on retirees being steered into private exchanges. we are not seeing active employees moving into private exchanges. outoyers look from 2016 and -- they are still interested in private exchanges. the confidence employers have in private exchanges has been that they had them -- confidence in the ability to do a number of things better than what an employer does today. private exchanges scored high on items like providing more choice , managing a defined contribution requirement, or even handling or managing.
weather was a lack of confidence had to do with their ability to engage employees and health care shopping or health care decisions, their ability to control health care costs. until we see more confidence move up the line on those particular items, i think you will see employers standing on the sidelines waiting to see this develop. they're watching private exchanges. they are interested. they want to see how they evolve and mature over time. they want to see how the scores on confidence improve and see if we get more movement to private exchanges. with that, i will turn it over to karen to talk about more implementing for 2015 and i will circle back and talk about some of the things employees need to consider for and roman. -- enrollment. >> thank you, brian.
employers are facing additional costs for the upcoming year. they are concerned about how to control the costs. what do our employers, they think are the most effective steps they can take to control health care costs? what we saw was a focus on implementing consumer directed health plans, whether is the only option or as an option available along with other choices. additional tactics that employers feel they are helping to control costs are cost-sharing and wellness initiatives to improve employee health. related to the issue of consumer directed health plans, we wanted to understand the prevalence of these plants for large employers. -- plans for large employers. we saw a continued increase in these plans. 81% surveyed have at least one of these.
we saw a large increase in the full replacement. last year, 22% had a full replacement model. it jumped this year to 32%. we saw about a third of large employers in a full replacement model as a way to engage their employees to be consumers of health care. , employers have really looked at their relationship with providing coverage for spouses and they continue to focus on ensuring that they provide coverage for dependents and spouses who have no other option. found about 29% of large employers have implemented additional costs or surcharges for spouses who can get coverage through their own employers. they are continuing to provide coverage to spouses and
dependent children who do not have coverage through other means, but they are looking to provide appropriate coverage for those who have no other option available to them. there has been a new focus lately around what we call narrow networks or preferred networks. it is an idea of steering employees to quality providers. we asked how many of our employers have a narrow network and site. -- insight. we found that three quarters do not have them and it is an emerging area. 13% offer at least one plan that incentivizes employees to use these networks. you would receive a lower co-pay or insurance amount. very few only offer plans with narrow networks. , employers continue to seek ways to move employees to quality providers, to
providers that provide not only quality care, but coordinated care. , do you offeryers and do you incentivizes lettuce ofo use excellence and networks including a ceo's -- letters of excellence and networks including aco's? hear about orthopedic, spine surgery, knee surgery, or heart conditions. 30% incentivized. they may pay for your travel to go to a center of excellence. they may waive any cost-sharing to use these centers which have been proven to have better quality care. the quarter have networks with aco's. very few incentivized them and
that is because it is an emerging sector. one of the things that we saw a lot of interest in this year and we have seen a lot of employers implement his tele-health. -- is tele-health. calling a doctor for minor health conditions that you may not be able to get into see her primary care doctor or you don't have time or they occur during hours that are not your traditional ones. it is a way to provide access to employees and steer them a way from emergency room use. another area we have seen interest in is whether employers will be direct contracting providers. are they going to contract directly with centers of providers, accountable care organizations to provide care directly to employees? although there has been interest, we have not seen large growth in terms of employers doing that. it is a very complicated task
for lawyers. employers are used to traditionally having health plans play the role. where there is interest in contracting with a few critical providers for the very costly procedures, in general, employers are looking more to incentivize employees to use the ones that are already within the network. to theirwhen it comes employees, we see again employers are offering a large range of tools and programs to help their employees to be healthy, to get good health care. respondentsf our having a nurse coach for condition management. if you had a heart attack or have cardiovascular disease, these nurses are there to help you change your lifestyle and ensure you take your medication. seen 71%on, we have have price transparency tools.
those are tools provided for a health plan or a separate entity that allows an employee to login and say, i need to get an mri and it shows them when they can where they can get that in what they're cost-sharing would be. employeesis to drive to a lower-cost option that provides the same quality care. brian already mentioned that one of the main cost drivers that has popped up in the survey this year was pharmacy. whatoked to understand employers are doing around specialty pharmacy. there has been a huge interest in it this year. the arrival of the hepatitis c drugs as prevalent of interest to the topics. have seen costs arising double digits year-over-year. employers are using a multitude of ways to ensure that these drugs, which are often for very
complex, sometimes life-threatening diseases, are getting to the right employees. they may use prior authorization. things that they have traditionally used on non-specialty pharmaceuticals. in addition, they are looking at newer ways. c, people who have hepatitis it can be very hard to manage the disease. have high respondents touch case management. this is very different. this is a qualified clinician who knows the disease and walks the employee through what their medication is, what they need to do to be compliant, and ensures that they stay compliant. these medications are incredibly expensive and they don't work if you don't take them. in addition, some are channeling all of the specialty pharmacies through either a preferred retail network or through their specialty pharmacy group and that is really an effort to ensure that it is the appropriate drug for the right patient and that the patient is
getting all of the support that they need when they have these -- this disease and the need to take these medications. before i turn it over to brian, there is one last question that if that was particularly interesting to highlight. for 2015, what are employers going to be focusing on? there are so many different areas that employers can focus in terms of healthy lifestyles, engagement. what are thetop -- three behaviors he were going to focus on in 2015? again was that consumer engagement and health care decision-making was the top one. 36% noted that as the top behavior to focus on. it was followed by weight management, tobacco, and increasing physical activity. the three lifestyle points that are of major concern and how they impact our health care and our health long term. with that, i am going to turn it
back over to brian to wrap us up. >> great. having said all that, what can employees expect during annual enrollment? if there is any year that an employee is going to focus on their enrollment packet, this is probably the year. as karen pointed out, there is this movement to even full replacement, high deductible plans. we have seen a jump in the number of companies moving to full replacement, high deductible lands. that is a different animal. it is a different animal than a ppo. whating and understanding is in your enrollment packets are you are not surprised, employers can put a lot of education when they put out these plans. what your opportunity is to put
money in a savings account, employers are influencing incentives to engage employees and lifestyle management or health care management. there are ways to maximize your benefits by engaging in those incentives. there are any number of great decision support tools and resources that many companies offer that typically are underutilized because they're out of sight, out of mind. know what the programs are. offer through your employer or through your health plan or through third-party. be extremely valuable to an employee when they are faced with a medical issue, particularly some of the decision-support services, which are very helpful and play wonderful advocacy role. lots of information for employees to pay attention to. in addition to the fact that costs are going to be up over the next year, about 5% or so.
also looking at spousal coverage. ,t spousal coverage increases they should take a look if their employer. at thethis information time of enrollment can help the employee maximize benefits as they go into 2015 and have an understanding as to what to january when you start seeing pricing on healthcare services, much different than you have ever seen in the past. with that, we will open it up for questions. howan you talk more about the relationships are different in these high touch relationships where if i have hepatitis c, how does that look logistically? how are they being more aggressive with me to try to
stem my medication? does it feel different? >> one of the things about specialty pharmacy is trying to make sure we get the right kind of care. depending on the drug, you can get that from a hospital setting and even from the home. the intent is to provide the coordination regardless of the setting with your physician and to try to get the most cost-effective setting. the compliance is really critical. the other challenge is dosing. getting the dose right. in some cases, employers are limiting that initial dose to 30 days or so, so there is not excess waste if that dose has to be adjusted. staying close to the patient and understanding what alert -- other elements there are to coordinate is a big part of what is being done on the specialty pharmacy said.
>> 5% projected cost increase for 2015 is significantly lower than what many public exchanges are reporting. how do you explain the cost difference employers expect than what is happening on it outlook exchanges? -- public exchanges? >> employers have a pretty stable environment. they do not have a lot of turnover. they have the same employees working with year-over-year. the public exchanges are relatively new. i still think they're going through a shakeup. and you will still see volatility and rates because of that. it is hard to see with those rate increases reflect. other reflecting the true underlying cost? true, they reflecting the
underlying cost? we have a couple years of experience to get under our belts before we can really understand the pricing in the public exchanges and how you would compare that to the private employers. i had a question about spousal coverage. mightntioned that there be a surcharge for spouses where if they can get coverage on their own, is that a direct result of the aca? is really more a reflection of trying to find other ways to manage health care costs, stay under the cadillac text, or delay the implementation ioof the cadillac tax, but do it in the right way.
it is better to get coverage through your employer than seeking company through your spouse's plan. that is really more the impetus behind it. it is not to much -- so much tied to anything else in the aca. it is looking at the cadillac tax and this is one of the tactics they are using to implement and manage the cost. other questions. karen mentioned aco's. stuff goings of aco on all over the country. aco-like organizations. there is more and more talk of setting these up as all payer mechanisms. getting the commercial insurers involved. it is happening in many states.
in parts of states. the missing piece of the , in-funded, large employers many cases. a lot of people are trying to figure out how to get your with then these groups reimbursement incentives lined up the same way as the other guys. how quickly do you see that happening with your members? >> i think the first thing about aco's is that they are emerging quickly and rapidly. the big question for employers is how do i decide what is a good aco and what isn't? if you have health plans coming to you and saying we have 80 aco's in 2013 and we will have another 30 in 2015, from an employer perspective, i don't know what that means. effect change within a health care delivery system that fast for it to be that much better than what you have. what employers are looking for
is what constitutes a good aco? what are the elements that would tell me that i know it when i see it? the functioning elements of this aco are better than the market. what outcomes should i expect? intuitively, we get the model. we need to understand how effective that model is in the provider's view of that model because reimbursement is changing in those models as well. you are moving away from fee-for-service and into other mechanisms of reimbursing providers. there is a lot of change management that has to go on to except that type of change and what type of resources are being put in place to drive all of that. conceptually, we like the ideas the direction they're heading. even high-performance networks are very similar in structure to what is going on. the big question for employers is what is the value?
we need a business case. not only for selling internally to ceo's, but to have a business case as to why this is better for an employee than what they currently have today. how we measurend that value. that is going to be a critical focus of the business group working with other employers to help lands end provider groups going forward. that is what arm -- plans and provider groups going forward. that is what they are looking for. >> can you talk specifically about the employer mandate deadline and how businesses are how they are getting specifically linked to the january deadline? with this as familiar one. the employer business mandate. can someone give me a little more -- karen him and you want to help? >> i assume you mean in terms of
the 30 hour rule requirement? >> yes. , employers would like to see that go to 40 hours. you see some companies jockeying with part-time workers to limit their hours below 30 hours. you have other companies looking to bring a more part-time workers to balance it out. then you have other companies providing coverage regardless. it is going to be very different , depending on the company, the culture, the value proposition, the industry they are in in terms of how they approach that. ultimately, all of it would like to see them pushed to 40 hours in the definition of coverage eligibility. if there's anything we hope we can get through congress, that is one of the short-term goals to get that changed.
>> you were speaking about how this year, the focus is going to be on the enrollment package. what is the biggest change? >> first, is my health plan changing? to consumermoving directed health plans or high deductible health plans. with such a rapid movement in that direction, the first question is is my plan different the next year? if it is, what do i need to do to understand it and engage in that? second is looking at spousal coverage in trying to maximize , is mys in terms of spouse better off on her plan or my plan if she has a plan? doing for math and figuring that out. annual enrollment is the time of year when employers have incentives around engaging in
health assessments and biometrics. if you are in a high deductible feed you will typically your spending account with money if you do certain things. watch for those incentives that may be available. typically there is a window to participate in those events. you want to maximize your benefits for next year. other questions. >> i have a question regarding the cadillac tax. how many of these employers, regardless of all they're doing to keep the cost down, expect to hit the cadillac tax? to hitink they are going it eventually. some will hit it faster than others. to generaled
inflation, not health care inflation. unless we can get health care inflation under control, we will all hit it at some point. there are companies that are worried about hitting it immediately in 2018. they are aggressively trying to with their benefits and how they can manage to get under that or at least minimize the impact so there is not that 40% and it is not as significant as it could be. other questions. great. thank you all for coming. we appreciate the time. if you have any other questions, please follow up with us at the end. [captioning performed by national captioning institute] [captions copyright national cable satellite corp. 2014]
>> coming up today, journalists discussed the role of race in the midterm elections and how communities of color are being portrayed by the media. we will be live from the asian american journalists association convention at 11:00 a.m. eastern on c-span. at 3 p.m. eastern, we will have more from the convention. also live on c-span. "new york times" reporter james frey then part in a press conference thursday speaking took part inryben a press conference thursday speaking about the freedom of the press. this is an hour and 10 minutes.
>> good afternoon. i am president of the national press club, and i'm pleased to welcome everyone on a day that is important to press freedom of this country, both regarding the james risen case and what is happening in ferguson, missouri, where journalists are on the frontline trying to cover news developed in the most difficult of circumstances. the national press club expressed its position on reporters covering the unrest were detained by police officers before being released. other reports backed up by video taken during the disturbances show some television crews were hampered by authorities from doing their professional duties.
this is all unacceptable, and we urge the police and other authorities in ferguson to let the journalists carry out their professional mission to report the news in an unfettered manner. to do otherwise is a violation of the freedom of press enshrined in the first amendment
of our bill of rights. also, unacceptable, very much, also unacceptable is the threat the prison being faced by james risen because of his work as a professional journalist. this morning a petition signed by more than 100,000 persons was delivered to the department of justice declaring we support james risen because we support a free press. those petitioners significantly include 20 pulitzer prize winners who declared their support for him, who is referred using to name a source for information about a bungled cia operation in iran that appears
in his 2006 book "state of war." we are pleased he could be with us today. the national press
club presented him an award in 2012 for his career supporting material the government would prefer to keep from public view. from surveillance to the botched attempt to give iran weapons and for resisting government attempts for revealing his confidential sources. i am proud that the national press club, through its act of freedom of the press committee, has continued to support him, as well as today's petition. i would like to introduce norman solomon, executive director of the institute for public accuracy. he is the author of a dozen books on media and public policy and is a recipient of the annual
award as well as the george orwell award. mr. solomon has coordinating the campaign in support of james risen. mr. solomon? [applause] >> thank you. here we are in the edward r. murrow room, because it was 60 years ago that in a most well-known and well-remembered tv broadcast, murrow said we cannot defend freedom abroad by deserting it at home. he said that at a time when it was essential for journalists to step forward to lance a boil of fear and intimidation that had
gripped official washington for years and the entire country as well. that was 1954. here we are in 2014, and the events today are part of i think a very strongly accelerating effort across this country to lance a boil of fear and intimidation. we do not talk anymore so much of a chilling effect. we talk about a freezing effect. we talk about ice cubes that congeal. we talk quite properly and accurately about an obama administration that seems determined to gut the meaning of the first amendment. as the petition that we presented this morning to the department of justice spells out, is really the functionality of the first amendment that matters.
it is a brief petition that i would like to read the entire brief text to you. "to president obama and attorney general holder, your effort to compel james risen to reveal his sources is an assault on freedom of the press. without confidentiality, journalism would be reduced to official stories in situations antithetical to the first amendment. we urge you in the strongest terms to halt all legal action against mr. risen and safeguard the freedom of journalists to maintain the confidentiality of their sources." well, as myron mentioned, and it was 14 on monday, the statements released on that day, and since then there have been six more who have approached us to add their individual statements.
all of them are posted at rootsaction.org. let me just briefly emphasize that the names on the petition we dropped off, and they are on screen. they are not just names. they are an activist network. we know how to reach them. we have everybody's e-mail addresses. we are just getting started here. it is all about organizing at this point and mobilizing the pressure that will be necessary to turn around what is truly a deteriorating, dreadful situation. the many organizations involved are only in part represented here, and folks we are going to hear from today are speaking for just one -- or a few of the many groups that are involved.
and i want to emphasize really that we are embarked now on something that might be unprecedented, a collision between an administration that talks good and does bad and a mobilized citizenry that increasingly understands what is at stake. today really marks the culmination of one phase of that growing effort and the initiation of the next. so we are going to move ahead now with this news conference. another part of this effort to lance that boil of fear and intimidation that is in doing so much damage to democracy in our country. i would like to now introduce gregg leslie. gregg leslie is the legal defense director for freedom of the press.
he has been an attorney since 1994 there and served as the legal director since 2000. he supervises the journalism hotline services and is regularly interviewed by journalists on law topics. he has served a lot of positions, is a member of the american bar association fair trial and free press task force, and many other positions. before entering law school, he worked as a research director for a washington business and political magazine, and here he is, mr. gregg leslie. it is [applause] >> thank you, and i happy to be here to support james risen and to encourage the department of justice to stop its efforts to compel and to testify. at the reporters' committee, we have been actively involved in
this case from the start, and we have been working with the department perform of its own guidelines regarding media subpoenas. while that can feel like a sisyphean task, it is critical to engage with the government on these issues. even incremental progress is something. but ultimately, threats like these from the federal government must be addressed by enactment of a meaningful shield law that recognizes that reporters need to be independent of the judicial system, not because they are above the law or because they want to avoid the burden of participating in the legal system. because journalism needs that independence to truly help hold the government accountable to the people. the reporters' committee was founded in 1970 over this very issue, the threats to reporters from subpoenas that led to the branzburg v. hayes case. in a decade that followed, there were almost 100 journalist
shield bills introduced. action was taken up again in earnest after the valery plame incident, in which judith miller spent days in jail. those efforts started then are ongoing. it takes a while to get these things through cards. -- congress. in 2007 the house approved a shield bill. when that did not pass through the senate in 2009, a similar bill passed on a voice vote under a suspension of rules, meaning it was so noncontroversial that a roll call vote was not needed. the senate has not passed such a bill, but in 2009 the judiciary committee sent a bill to the floor that failed to win a place on the calendar, as debate on obamacare took over the agenda. that kind of sidetracked things for a while. the latest attempt passage of a journalist shield bill came
after last summer's disclosure of a subpoena of phone records to track down an operation in yemen and the relation that the department of justice had successfully obtained a search warrant of a fox news reporter's gmail account by telling a court that he was involved in a crime, at the very least either as an aider, abettor, or co-conspirator. that was really something for the government come out and say a reporter, by asking a source, asking a government employee for information, was guilty of aiding, abetting, or co-conspiring in an espionage charge. when the actions against these came to light -- president obama ordered attorney general holder to review policies into journalist work
and the report was released to the president in july last year. while it offered provisions to make it more difficult for prosecutors and at least lead to greater notifications to journalist before their third-party records were subpoenaed, we knew at the same time that of course the department of justice was saying they fully intended to subpoena reporters in the future if they really needed the evidence to prosecute a leaker. the ap and fox news incidents prompt more congressional action on the shield bill and the bill was approved by the senate judiciary committee last september, almost a year ago now. though it still awaits senate action. the current makeup of the house is not quite the same as it was in 2009, so we don't know what will happen there. the fight over the right to keep journalist ross sources confidential is literally older than the republic will stop a colonial printer refused to
-- then the republic. a colonial printer refused to disclose the authors of attacks against the colonial governor of new york in 1734. thus was himself charged with seditious libel. a century later in 1848, news of the treaty of waterloo bay guadalupe hidalgo ending the mexican-american war was first reported to the american people after a news paper reporter from the "new york herald" was told of the still secret terms. he spent a month under house arrest in the capital. 50 years after that, in 1896, john morris, a baltimore sun reporter, reported a number of elected officials and police reporters were taking payoffs from gambling houses all stop when he refused to name his source before a grand jury, he was imprisoned until the grand jury's expired. the significance of this case is this jailing prompted baltimore journalists to push for the than aren't heard of legislation that
-- the then unheard of legislation that would protect them from having to reveal sources identities and courts, a reporters privilege, much like the spousal rutledge or doctor-patient privilege. the statute has been amended a few times come about the state has never felt the need to rescind the protection and in the century since then, we've seen another 38 states and the district of columbia enact such shield laws will stop it is those shield laws that provide -- shield laws. it is those shield laws that provide the real protections to journalists, as the right at the federal level is weaker than ever. thanks to the state efforts, we know shield laws work. now more than ever, it's time to demand congress pass a meaningful shield law. congress must say that the ability to account to the people comes from watchdogs, not just journalists, but whistleblowers as well. one of the greatest things those in power can do can connect -- is enact limits on their own power and congress much -- congress must take that step
now. thank you. [applause] >> our next speaker is the outside counsel for the freedom of the press foundation. he's a professor at uc hastings law school where he directs the liberty, security and technology clinic. his casework addresses constitutional issues that arise in espionage and counterterrorism prosecutors and. ahmed was the lead counsel in the first criminal case to challenge bulk metadata collection by the nsa after the snowden disclosures. he currently represents journalist barrett brown. he formally taught at the national security clinic at the university of texas school of law, he was a staff attorney at u.k.,ve -- at reprieve
where he represented guantánamo detainees in their habeas corpus proceedings. >> good afternoon. it is an honor to be here today, not only because i admire mr. risen's journalism, but what rings is together transcends the freedom of the press foundation, it transcends the impressive roster of supporters that have spoken and written in encouragement. what brings us together today is the first amendment of the constitution, specifically the portion of that amendment guaranteeing the freedom of the press without persecution or unnecessary prosecution. thomas jefferson once claimed a democracy cannot be both ignorant and free. the framers of the constitution believed if u.s. citizens failed to take good care to share information completely amongst themselves, they would be worse off than they had been as subjects of the british monarchy. to that end, the first amendment
recognizes that freedom is not just a luxury but a necessity. , to allow a government to function and can tune you to -- and continue to exist the , people must be informed. it's a simple mantra for a great nation. the development of our free society is the result of journalism reporters like james risen provide. core of our free society is that and the public persona or front-page scoop is the crux of their profession -- that is newsgathering. the heart of our freedom and the freedom to publish the news is the freedom to gather the news. justice sutherland wrote in 1936 that newspapers, magazines, and other journals in this country has continued to shed more light on the public in business affairs of the nation than any other instrumentality of publicity. since informed public opinion is the most important of all restraint on this government,
the abridgment of the publicity afforded by free press cannot be regarded otherwise without grave concern. so it is with grave concern that we gather today to confront a real threat to our nation's security. for who are we if we are not secure in our ability to hold government accountable? these freedoms are not without limitation. but to be clear, mr. rison broke no law gathering the news, broke no law proliferating the news and publishing his articles and books. nor can the justice department make such claims. there is no law that mandates to the press to obtain government approval about legally acquired information. there is no dispute that such a law would be unconstitutional as a restraint on speech and would transform this great country from being a democracy to becoming a totalitarian state. yet james risen delayed publication for years out of an abundance of caution until it was clear to him the government's desire to censor
him was not a matter of national security, rather it was a matter of national embarrassment. to be clear, the government does not seek to compel information to put an end to an existing threat -- to stop a terrorist attack or even an ongoing crime. the government seeks information ordered to investigate an alleged leak that occurred years ago by someone else. quite frankly, i'm puzzled as to why the doj needs to use them to make their case or them. you would think with all the resources expended on federal law enforcement, the fate of our nation would not rise and fall at the feet of a 59-year-old reporter revealing his sources. and i'm sorry to give away your age. [laughter] by initiating and executing investigations that monitor e-mails, phone calls, and even credit reports of journalists, the government has made it clear
that it does not fear the chilling effects of our free press -- to our free press and does not value the dogged investigative reporting that has contributed not only to our great democracy, led to the history of mankind. either way you look at it, mr. and all journalists are hoice,with a hobson's c either to practice a form of journalism consistent with the first amendment and risk prison or practice a form of journalism to release the information they permit them to reveal only those facts the executive deems fit for public consumption. has chosen the path consistent with the first amendment and it's not likely many will follow in his footsteps. in the end, it is the american people that have paid and will continue to pay the price. thank you. [applause]
>> our next speaker is director of the national security and human rights program at the government accountability project. it is the nations leading whistleblower organization and the program that focuses on secrecy, surveillance, torture and discrimination. she has been at the forefront of defending against the government's unprecedented war on whistleblowers which of course has hit journalists very hard. among her clients, she represents seven national security and intelligence member employees who have investigated or been charged under the espionage act for allegedly mishandling classified information, including edward snowden, thomas drake and john. john kiriakou.
she worked at the justice department for seven years for first as a trial attorney and as a legal ethics advisor. [applause] >> good afternoon. anyone who doubts that the war on whistleblowers is a backdoor war on journalists should study the case of james risen. threats to reporters are the undercurrent in the obama administration's record-setting espionage act prosecutions of the so-called leakers. one example where the press is implicated is when the justice department subpoenaed associated reporters phone records impacting over 100 different journalists. in the case of another whistleblower, stephen kim, the justice department got a search
warrant on the reporter by claiming he was a co-conspirator. in the case of my client edward snowden, the administration has made noises about reporter glenn greenwald being an aider and abettor. considering the administration's use of the espionage act to chill speech, it should be no surprise that threats against risen come from espionage act prosecution of another whistleblower. jeff sterling. and risen's honorable commitment to protect the source that revealed the disastrous government operation gone wrong. whistleblowers need the press. there are no safe and effective internal channels for most national security and intelligence whistleblowers. channels that do exist often turn whistleblowers into targets of retaliation and rarely
correct the underlying wrongdoing, especially when the wrongdoing is perpetrated by senior levels of the u.s. government. the press, i would submit, also needs whistleblowers. journalists depend on whistleblower sources to report critical information in the public interest. without whistleblowers, journalists would struggle to unpack government or corporate spend without differing perspectives or, in many cases, without documentary evidence. as a whistleblower attorney, there are a small but essential handful of reporters i feel confident will accurately report information and protect their sources. james risen is one of them. if he is jailed or forced to pay harsh fines the pool reporters , who know whistle blowers are
essential for accurate reporting will become even smaller. the threats to jim risen are an attack on the entire first amendment. most prominently the right to a free press, but also the right to speak and associate with whistleblowers and reporters. government surveillance of reporters, subpoenaing of reporters to testify against their own sources and threatening them with contempt of court create a freezing atmosphere where neither whistleblowers nor reporters are safe to hold the government accountable and keep the public informed. committing journalism is not a crime. the notion that it is is a dangerous trend we should deprive of oxygen. it demands the government withdraw the subpoena against -- of reporter jim risen
immediately. thank you. [applause] >> our next speaker, courtney raj, is a journalist and free expression advocate who writes and speaks often on the intersection of media, technology and human rights , with a particular emphasis on the middle east. she is currently advocacy director at the committee to to protect journalists where , she's leading the right to report campaign aimed at ending surveillance and harassment of journalists. prior to joining cpj, she was at unesco where she coordinated the freedom of expression section strategy in the arab region. she also previously managed the global freedom of expression campaign at freedom house and "al arabiya,"
lebanon,y star" in and "the new york times." [applause] >> thank you. the committee to protect turn -- to protect journalists is seriously concerned about the actions taken by the department of justice and the ongoing efforts to subpoena jim which could have a chilling effect on the u.s. media and journalists, if it has not already had that impact. cpj was founded in 1981 by a group of u.s. correspondents who realized they could not ignore plight of colleagues a blowout -- could not ignore the plight of their colleagues abroad who's reporting put them at risk on a daily basis. since then, they have defended the rights of journalists to report the news without fear of reprisal. last year, we decided the crackdown on leak investigations and revelations about the extent of surveillance in a post 9/11 world necessitated us to look inward and way and on the threats to press freedom in the united states. this is why we are here today. in support of jim and as a
former colleague at the "new your times," i'm happy to be here in solidarity with his efforts to protect his confidential sources and the integrity of the journalistic practice. the obama administration has pursued 8 prosecutions of leakers under the espionage act, more than twice the total numbers of such prosecutions since the law was enacted than any other administration all combined. the subpoena requiring jim's testimony is part of the broader crackdown on leaks and whistleblowers. a cpj special report published last october concluded the obama administration's aggressive prosecution of leakers of classified information, revelations about broad surveillance programs, and moves to stem the routine disclosure of information to the press shows the president has fallen far short of his campaign promise to have the most open government in u.s. history.
several journalists interviewed for the report told cpj leak investigations and surveillance revelations made big government fearful to talk about sensitive information. and prosecutions such of those of jim have had a profoundly detrimental impact on the process of journalism and the first amendment. publicly speculating about bringing charges of espionage or prosecutions more generally of journalists for doing their job serves to intimidate not only the individual journalist, but journalists more broadly. and has a serious chilling effect on the press. this is likely to be stronger among journalists who do not have the backing and protection of a major media organization with legal resources. revelations about targeted surveillance and hacking of journalists and media outlets is also deeply problematic. you heard those described earlier. having read jim's affidavit
explaining why he cannot testify and detailing the extent of government harassment and surveillance of electronic communication, it is clear if he is forced to testify, he would likely put at risk the confidentiality of his source. furthermore, these type of aggressive prosecutions send a dangerous signal to governments elsewhere that would seek to use national security and antistate charges as a cover for clamping down on journalists and press freedom. according to cpj research, nearly 60% of imprisoned journalists worldwide are imprisoned on antistate charges such as subversion or terrorism . that is far higher than any other charge, such as defamation or insult, and it is a favorite of oppressive regimes who see little value in a free press. furthermore, undermining the principle of source protection and the idea that journalists like doctors and others have the
right to keep sources confidential has implications for the robust practice of journalism. in 2012, the justice department argued that reporters' privilege should not apply in national security cases and compare journalists to someone receiving drugs from a dealer. preventing journalists from being able to promise confidentiality to their sources undermines the key aspect of journalism central to so much reporting on issues central to the public interest like national security, like antiterrorism, and are central to holding government accountable and to the democratic process. the u.s. government's ongoing legal pursuit of jim sends a terrifying message to the 124 journalists jailed worldwide on antistate charges and detracts from its normative moral power abroad. i do not think the united states wants to join cuba in becoming the only other country in the
western hemisphere to have an imprisoned journalists that is what is at risk here. it's harder for the u.s. to be taken seriously when it advocates for press freedom and journalistic rights abroad when they are abridged at home. governments have many obligations -- to enforce the law, to protect citizens and prevent attacks. but they also have an obligation to uphold the constitution and uphold democratic principles upon which this society is built and to ensure the functioning of the democratic process, in which the press plays a central role. the committee to protect journalists calls on the u.s. department of justice to withdraw its subpoena seeking to force journalist james risen to give testimony that would reveal a confidential source. [applause] >> our next speaker has worked as the director of the
washington office for reporters without borders since 2011. she runs u.s. activities for the program and advocates for journalists, bloggers and media rights worldwide. acting as reporters without borders' spokesperson in the u.s., she appears regularly in american and overseas media and lectures at conferences at u.s. universities about press freedom violation issues. she previously served as press in charge of outreach at the french embassy in the united states and worked as an economics correspondent for a range of french media focusing on international politics and macroeconomic issues. [applause] >> thank you norman and thank you to roots action for all the work you did to this campaign together.
and thank you to all of you for being here today. i will be short, as a lot has already been said, and i am looking forward to hearing james risen. the united states is at the 46th position in the reporters without borders' 2014 press freedom index. the world press freedom index we have published every year since 2002 measures the level of freedom of information in 180 countries and reflects the degree of freedom journalists, news organizations and bloggers enjoy in each country. one explanation for the united states to be ranked at the 46th position is the whistleblower is the enemy. eight alleged whistleblowers the been charged under
espionage act since barack obama took office in 2009, which is the highest number under any previous administration combined. there is no true freedom of information, no true freedom of the press, without protection of journalists' sources. leaks are the lifeblood of investigative journalists. given that nearly all information related to national security is classified in this country, it is safe to say this crackdown against whistleblowers is designed to restrict all but officially approved versions of events. this highlights the need for a comprehensive federal shield law in the u.s. which could protect journalists' sources at the federal level. at the moment, the senate shield law project supported by the obama administration still has major flaws. 2013 will remain the year of the associated press scandal which came to light when the
department of justice receivedged that it the agency's phone records. 2013 will be remembered as the year where we saw a man condemned to 35 years in prison. it will also be remembered for the revelation of edward snowden, who exposed the nsa. be remembered2014 as the year when jeff risen was sent to jail for doing his job? i hope not. we hope not. reporters without borders is deeply worried by the continuing efforts taken by the department of justice to force james risen to testify against his confidential source. reporters without borders calls on the department of justice to halt all legal action against james risen. reporters without borders is largest press freedom organization in the world with almost 30 years of experience
. thanks to its unique global network of 150 correspondence investigating in 130 countries, 12 national offices and a status at the u.n. and unesco, reporters without borders is able to have a global impact and -- by gathering and providing underground intelligence and defending and assisting news providers around the world. today, we are here to defend james risen, to defend the first amendment. because freedom of the press is the most important freedom. it is the freedom of all of us to verify the existence of all other freedom. thank you. [applause] >> i should mention this news conference is hosted by rootsaction.org and cohosted by
the institute for public accuracy. there are more than a dozen organizations with logos on the petition online. i hope you will take a look at that constellation of groups -- you can get in touch with them and look at that position at rootsaction.org. our next speaker pioneered the audience participation talk format on television as host of the donahue show for 29 years . phil donahue has 20 emmy awards, nine as host and 11 for the show, as well as the peabody award, as well as the president 's award from the national women's political caucus and the media person of the year award from the gay and lesbian alliance. he has done a lot over the decades groundbreaking , interviews with world leaders and newsmakers. there is so much to say and i will be very brief. i personally remember, as millions of people do, how in 1985, he introduced the
satellite space bridge telecast between the united states and the soviet union in the midst of a lot of very cold part of the cold war and then brought his talkshow to russia for a week of television broadcast. phil donahue was the first western journalist to visit chernobyl after the nuclear power accident there. in 2006, phil coproduced and codirected the documentary, "body of war," with a very powerful journalistic and cinematic focus on one young iraq war veteran left in a wheelchair by enemy fire and the parallel process of machinations on capitol hill. phil donahue. [applause] >> thank you and congratulations for assembling this very important event. i was a journalist.
i was a journalist first for wabj in adrian, michigan -- the proverbial 150 watt radio station. i wondered whatever happened to wabj, so i googled it, and there it was. the washington association of black journalists. wabj is gone now, but it's a place where i learned a lot about journalism. i was 21 years old. i must have looked 12. i had a tape recorder with literally vacuum tubes and i could stop the mayor in his tracks. i covered city hall, i covered my first murder, i played ball with the cops so i would cultivate my sources, and i began to really understand what a noble pursuit journalism is. now here i am at the press club
with a lot of the people who i really -- if they were all men, they would be the sons my mother wanted to have. [laughter] i am very flattered to have norman ask me to make an introduction of james. i have monitored my talk show meter now, which he is saying all right, get off. but i asked the patients of the good people at the press club for this one observation. every major metropolitan newspaper in this country supported the invasion of iraq. mcclatchy's, warren strobel, and
jonathan landay are exceptions, but many of their own papers did not publish their own work. they said where's the evidence? wmd, where? this is what you get with corporate media. when i was a reporter in adrian, michigan, i did not have to take a test. i just said, i was a reporter. i did not have to pee in a bo ttle. all you had to do was get out there. that's the way you have more people getting the news and it's more likely that somewhere in the collective victual of this large crowd will be found the truth. today, the collective middle is occupied by five multinational companies, much more interested in the price of their stock than they are in funding investigative journalists, who by the way are not necessarily cost-effective, as we know. investigative journalism can lead you down a rabbit hole with nothing to publish when you are finished. that makes what james risen has done all the more important.
at the time when the mainstream media has a lot on its mind and a lot to be ashamed of, the president said during the iraq buildup, you cannot take pictures of the coffins and the whole media establishment said ok. we are not fighting back. back,ever needed to bite it is now -- with the bill of rights being eroded and the fundamental values of our founders. we have no habaes. we have people in cages. no nothing, no phone calls. chmiranda -- don't
make me laugh. the american people are standing mute. we heard from our media as the bill of rights and the fundamentals of this nation are eroding before our very eyes. into this environment comes james risen. we think we should put him on a pedestal and apparently the president believes he should be put in jail. what is wrong with this picture? it is for that reason we assemble here today, hoping the 20 pulitzer prizewinners who have lent their names to this will be joined by thousands and thousands of other americans who agree we have sent thousands and thousands of people to die for the privilege of the first amendment and the right of a free press. james risen is one of those people who took advantage of that right -- who doesn't want it to die as we stand here mute as people in power who don't want to be embarrassed and begin to listen on your phone or mine. now is the time for more of the kind of journalism james risen is doing.
and it's that reason i have this once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to present to you a great american, a patriot, james risen. [applause] >> wow, i don't know if i can live up to that. [laughter] i have to think about that for a minute. i just came here really today to thank everybody involved with this. i was not involved with this petition drive at all and anybody who knows me knows i could not organize a one car funeral. the fact that this has happened leaves me speechless. the main thing that gets to me is i realize i don't deserve all this.
but i also know that it is really not about me. it's about some basic issues that affect all journalists and all americans. there are a couple of things i can say and one is that the justice department and the obama administration are the ones who turned this into a fundamental fight over press freedom. in their appeal to the fourth circuit, they said this case, the central issue in this case was not some details or specifics. the fundamental thing this case was about was there was no such thing as reporters privilege.