Friday, June 25, 2004

Michael Powell, get your hands off my airwaves

This couldn’t be better news

New FCC media rules blocked
WASHINGTON (Reuters) - A U.S. appeals court refused Thursday to allow loosened federal rules on media ownership to take effect, dealing a blow to large broadcasters like News Corp. and Tribune Co. looking to extend their reach.
"The Commission has not sufficiently justified its particular chosen numerical limits for local television ownership, local radio ownership, and cross-ownership of media within local markets," said the 218-page opinion by the appellate court in Philadelphia.
Opponents who waged a grass-roots campaign against the rules cheered the court's decision, saying it would now provide an opportunity to write rules that would slow industry consolidation.

Yes this is a crucial presidential election. Yes soldiers die every day in Iraq. Yes our dependence on foreign oil is frightening.
But I think media consolidation is potentially the largest single issue facing the American public precisely because it disrupts, degrades and mutates the very flow of information.
I’m just stunned that this hasn’t received bigger play, both in mainstream press and television and in the blog world. The hometown morning daily had it burried below the fold in the business page. Sure it’s business, but this is A1 material.

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