Paper Tiger Television

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Paper Tiger Television is an open media collective dedicated to raising media literacy and challenging corporate control over broadcast medium. Based in New York City, Paper Tiger was founded in 1981.

Paper Tiger Television (PTTV) is a non-profit organization made up of volunteers and run as a collective in response to systems of hierarchical power.

The collective celebrated its 25th anniversary on October 11, 2007 with a premiere of the video Paper Tiger Reads Paper Tiger Television at the Anthology Film Archives


Paper Tiger Television grew out of the Public-access television series, Communications Update, which ran on Manhattan Cable TV. The first Paper Tiger programs featured communications scholar Herbert Schiller reading the venerable New York Times the "steering mechanism of the ruling class".


The complete catalog of over 500 programs can be found at the Paper Tiger Television website.[1]

Crystal128-tv.svg This film, television or video-related list is incomplete; you can help by expanding it with reliably sourced additions.

Herb Schiller Reads The New York Times: The Steering Mechanism of the Ruling Class, 1981
Natalie Didn't Drown: Joan Braderman Reads The National Enquirer, 1982
Tuli Kupferberg Reads Rolling Stone: Always Smile When You Give 'em the Shaft, October 13, 1982
Bill Tabb Reads US News & World Report: Disrobing the Economy, May 26, 1982
Archie Singham Reads Foreign Policy: A Look at the Old Boy's Network, May 4, 1983
Joel Kovel Reads Life Magazine: It's a New Life, Painting a Corpse, September 21, 1983
Stanley Aronowitz Reads The New York Times: A Timely Look at Labor, 1983
Elayne Rapping Swoons to Romance Novels, 1983
Richie Perez Watches Fort Apache: The Bronx, 1983
Patty Zimmerman Reads Variety: Hooray for Hollywood, June 20, 1984
Pearl Bowser Looks at Early Black Cinema: The Legacy of Oscar Micheaux, 1984
Renee Tajima Reads Asian Images in American Film: Charlie Chan Go Home!, 1984
Marc Crispin Miller Reads Cigarette Ads: Lots More Ifs, Ands & Butts, 1985
Jean Franco Reads Mexican Novelas: Adios Machismo! Hola Maquilladora, 1985
Flo Kennedy Reads U.S. Press on South Africa: The Hair in the Milk, February 1985
Noam Chomsky Reads The New York Times: Seeking Peace in the Middle East, June 1985
Thulani Davis Asks, Why Howard Beach?: Racial Violence and the Media, January 21, 1987
Donna Haraway Reads The National Geographic on Primates, 1987
Born To Be Sold: Martha Rosler Reads the Strange Case of Baby S/M, 1988
Fred Landis Reads The Washington Times: The Dark Side of the Moonies, 1989
Class Dismissed: featuring Howard Zinn and James Loewen, 2004
Stuart Ewen Reads The New York Post: Fantasy, Morality and Authority, 1982
Protest + Education Can Equal Change: featuring Kathy High, 1992

See also[edit]


  • DeeDee Halleck, Handheld Visions: The Impossible Possibilities of Community Media
  • Erik Barnouw, Documentary: A History of the Non-Fiction Film
  • Martha Gever, "Meet the Press: On Paper Tiger Television." in Transmission. Ed. Peter D'Augustino. New York: Tanam, 1985. 215-33.
  • Marcus, Daniel. "Paper Tiger Television (United States)." Encyclopedia of Social Movement Media, edited by John D. H. Downing, SAGE Reference, 2011, pp. 383-384. Gale Virtual Reference Library.
  • Stein, L. (2001). Access television and grassroots political communication in the United States. In J. H. Downing, Radical media: Rebellious communication and social movements (pp. 299-324). Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage.

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