Jenny Toomey

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Jenny Toomey "is the Executive Director of the Future of Music Coalition. She is also an intellectual, an activist and a musician. After graduating from Georgetown University with an interdisciplinary major in Philosophy, English and Women's Studies in 1990, Jenny co-ran Simple Machines, an independent record label for eight years with Future of Music board member Kristin Thomson. Simple Machines had over 70 releases, the most important of which may have been a 24 page Mechanic's Guide to Putting Out Records which clearly and practically described the process of putting out records and CDs, while educating young artists about the value of retaining control of their work. This guide helped to launch a countless number of independent labels and led to somewhat of a DIY renaissance in the alternative music community throughout the 1990s...

"After closing down Simple Machines in 1998 Jenny worked for three years at the Washington Post as a copywriter. She also wrote music and technology reviews for the Post, Village Voice, CNET and a variety of other music and technology publications. Here she began to understand the potential power of technology to transform the lives of musicians. This fascination with technology, when combined with her work organizing musicians to support the FCC's Low Power Radio initiative, led her to join with Kristin Thomson and to create an online forum called The Machine in December 1999. At this site Kristin and Jenny began the process of educating themselves and other musicians about the music/tech landscape. They also began to raise critical questions regarding the artist's role in the unfolding technological revolution. After publishing an op-ed piece in the Washington Post, Jenny pulled together a board that wrote and published the Future of Music Manifesto, thus leading to the formation of the organization in June 2000.

"In the past two years Jenny has spoken about music and technology at Harvard, MIT, Columbia's American Assembly, South By Southwest, CMJ, Comdex, University of Chicago, Temple University, NARM Convention, CNN International, Tech TV, London's Net Media, Manchester's In The City conference and on NPR. In March 2001 she was named one of Internet Weekly's "25 Unsung Heroes of the Web" and more recently received a special achievement award from the Washington Area Music Association for her activism." [1]

In November 2007 Jenny Toomey was "named the next Program Officer for Media and Cultural Policy at the Ford Foundation. Jenny Toomey will leave FMC as Executive Director effective January 14, 2008 but will actively participate in the transition of new leadership to the organization." [2]

Resources and articles

Related Sourcewatch articles


  1. Jenny Toomey, Future of Music Coalition, accessed December 14, 2007.
  2. Future of Music Coalition's Jenny Toomey Appointed Program Officer for Ford Foundation, Future of Music Coalition, accessed December 14, 2007.
  3. Journalist Advisory Committee, The Real News, accessed March 17, 2008.