Informational Justice as the New Media Pluralism
The London School of Economics Media Policy Project has asked scholars, industry, and policymakers to reflect on this question: what does media pluralism policy look like in the digital age? My contribution argues that we need to have a broader conception of informational justice that encompasses all the ways people circulate information and are influenced by the structure and practices of digital media. I focus on algorithmic authority and algorithmic magnetism as two forces that shape our information environment in unseen ways. In the United States, media pluralism or media diversity remains the realm of biennial FCC reviews of media ownership rules. The same policy considerations arise when we have a merger review, as in the case of Comcast and Time Warner. This focus on the ownership of communications infrastructure may be too acute in some instances and too narrow in others. Big data and digital intermediaries are increasingly shaping the way public discourse happens.