The FCC has long been little more than the mouthpiece of big media. Indeed a seat on the FCC is the carrot dangled to Big Media moguls upon retirement from the real world. This organization supposedly protects us from the conglomerates and ensures that there is fair and equitable competition in both the small and large markets.

Of course reality is that we have the wolf guarding the chicken coop!

In a narrow but not unexpected move the FCC has relaxed the rules in 20 major markets thus opening the pathway for the same company to control Television, Radio, and Print.

How this move can be viewed as positive is beyond me. This just signals another step in the total annihilation of decent reporting, to say nothing of the layoffs in the media industry that are bound to follow. Why have two news teams, one for TV and one for the Newspaper when you can consolidate them? While this makes great economic sense to the companies involved, it means that the consumer has less choice. Wherever you go, TV, Radio, or the Newspaper you will get the same slant on the same story.

Democratic and dissenting commissioner Michael J. Copps who led a nationwide effort prevent this rule change had nothing possitive to say about it. It is nothing more than a big Christmas present to the largest conglomerates.

“In the final analysis,” Mr. Copps said, “the real winners today are businesses that are in many cases quite healthy, and the real losers are going to be all of us who depend on the news media to learn what’s happening in our communities and to keep an eye on local government.”

A sad day indeed for the news world.

Simon Barrett


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