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FCC is studying media ownership rules

FCC chairman Ajit Pai has said that the agency is studying restrictions on media ownership, characterising a number of the rules as “quite antiquated”. In an interview with Variety, Pai said that an easing of such restrictions “is one of the issues that is under consideration”. Many broadcasters have championed the idea of lifting restrictions that limit the number of stations that one entity can own. “We are studying the issue,” Pai said. “But what I can tell you is that having worked on that question [of media ownership] for a quite a while, I do think that a number of media ownership rules have become quite antiquated.” Companies are not limited in the number of stations that they can own, but they are limited to reaching no more than 39% of all TV households. Pai has already eased FCC limits on shared service agreements between TV stations in the same market. His predecessor, Tom Wheeler, saw such agreements as loopholes that allowed station groups to get around existing media ownership restrictions. Pai has been particularly critical of a rule that prohibits a company from owning a broadcast and newspaper in the same market. He said that it was “incumbent upon (me) to take a hard look at that”. More here

  • Friday, 17 March 2017

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