LOS ANGELES (December 18, 2007) – In
response to a Federal Communications Commission (FCC) vote
in favor of relaxing media ownership rules and allowing
companies in the top 20 national media markets to own both
print and broadcast outlets, the
Television Council issued the
“The PTC is deeply disappointed in the
announcement today by the FCC that will effectively loosen
longstanding rules for media ownership. While the ruling
today will only affect a select number of US markets, even a
small step in the wrong direction is a step in the wrong
direction,” said PTC President Tim Winter.
“Broadcasters are required to use the public
airwaves to serve the public interest, and at the same time
they are able to reap immense financial benefit. This
creates an inherent potential for a conflict of interest,
especially when billions of dollars are at stake. It is
therefore incumbent upon other media outlets to provide a
check and balance by reporting objectively about how the
public airwaves are being exploited. Experience has shown us
that newspapers do not take TV or radio stations to task
when they are jointly owned by the same media conglomerate.
“At hearings across the United States over
the past two years, the overwhelming message from the public
was that media conglomerates regularly and routinely place
their own corporate interest ahead of the public interest.
With today’s announcement, the FCC has turned a deaf ear to
the prevailing public sentiment voiced at each and every
localism hearing,” Winter concluded.