On Saturday November 22nd, we were honored to welcome special guests Cenk Uygur, founder of The Young Turks, and Andrew Napier, an Oscar-award winning director, to campus to discuss the foundation of The Young Turks, the largest online news network in the world. Those in attendance enjoyed a screening of the documentary film Mad as Hell by Napier about Uygur’s career then participated in a Q&A with the two afterwards.
An alumnus of the Wharton School of Business of the University of Pennsylvania and Columbia University Law School, Uygur worked unhappily as a corporate lawyer for a few years before deciding to pursue a career in journalism by challenging what he views as the establishment and exposing corruption in both politics and media. Mad as Hell details this tumultuous journey as Uygur was continually faced with opposition to his unconventional, often controversial, style of commentary while serving his posts radio talk show host and then MSNBC correspondent. Constantly asked to censor his thoughts in light of corporate and political powers, he eventually decided to abandon the comfort and wealth of traditional media for a career in progressive, alternative media based in YouTube and online sourcing with The Young Turks. Gaining popularity among web-users, it has amassed billions of views and millions of subscribers. The success of the show seems a testament to both the rise of online media and the growing mass of American who desire alternative voices.
If you missed the event, there are still many ways to get involved! You can find a screening of the film near you. Watch the show. Engage in their political activism revolving around corporate personhood!
We’re so grateful to have collaborated with a number of groups on this event. Thank you to Columbia Turkish Students Association, Columbia Multicultural Business Association, Columbia Undergraduate Law Review (CULR), Roosevelt Institute- Columbia University Chapter, Columbia Political Union (CPU), Arab and Middle Eastern Journalists Association (AMEJA), Columbia Law School Democrats, and Columbia Business School Democrats for co-sponsoring the event. A special thanks to Columbia Turkish Students Association for co-hosting the Q&A portion!