By: Allison Upchurch, Staff Reporter
While the conflict may not have been rooted right here in Colorado, it still has a say in what we as a society can identify as the restriction on press freedom.
On November 3, the Los Angeles Times posted on its annual holiday movie preview list that Thor: Ragnarok and other movies released by the Walt Disney Company would not be reviewed on the list.
This absence came as a result of disagreements between the LA Times and the Walt Disney Company about a series of articles the LA Times had posted that took an inside look at the Walt Disney Company and its relationship and business influence in the city of Anaheim, California where the Disneyland Resort is located. The Walt Disney Company said of the articles that “The Times moved forward with a biased and inaccurate series wholly driven by a political agenda.”
The disagreement resulted in the LA Times movie critics not being permitted to an advanced screening of Thor: Ragnarok and all the other Disney Company movies coming out in the future.
As the weekend digressed, many critic organizations, newspapers, and valued members of the entertainment business took to respond to this by supporting the LA Times and its journalists. Many also committed to boycotting upcoming Disney movies such as Disney/Pixar’s Coco and Star Wars: The Last Jedi.
One of these supporters, the LA Film Critics, tweeted out a statement saying that Disney’s actions were “antithetical to the principles of a free press and set a dangerous precedent in a time of already heightened hostility toward journalists.”
On November 7, the disagreement was settled and the LA Times was granted permission to attend future advanced screenings of upcoming Disney films and review them.
While the issue is closed, it brings into question how much we as a society value freedom of the press, even though we may never agree on what is being stated in the press. Restrictions of any kind can be seen as dangerous, as the Washington Post reported on in conjunction with this issue.
This overall theme of freedom of the press is a lot bigger than what can be covered here and now. To learn more about the issues faced with freedom of the press, you can go to https://pressfreedomtracker.us or explore a generalization of different resources at http://www.nyguild.org/press-freedom.