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March 27, 2003

FCC: Federal Crackhead Commission?

Under the leadership of Michael Powell, Colin's kid, the FCC has grown increasingly loony in the last couple of years. First they declared Sarah Jones' political anthem Your Revolution to be "indecent" and "patently offensive", and fined a Portland radio station $7,000 for playing it. Then they fined another station for playing the clean version of Eminem's single, Without Me. Not promising developments for those who value freedom of expression.

Thankfully, the FCC ultimately took a loss on both of those cases, and had to rescind those fines after much public outcry and legal challenges. But the FCC's newest bout with lunacy would be far more damaging if it succeeds. Powell's FCC is now leading the charge to deregulate media ownership, and allow even more of what we see and hear to be controlled by the same few corporations, such as the infamous Clear Channel. As reported in The Nation:

"One of the most important votes of 2003 will be cast not in Congress or in voting booths across the country but at the Federal Communications Commission. At stake is how TV, radio, newspapers and the Internet will look in the next generation and beyond. At stake are core values of localism, competition, diversity and maintaining the vitality of America's marketplace of ideas. And at stake is the ability of consumers to enjoy creative, diverse and enriching entertainment. But most people and most journalists are ignoring this momentous vote."

Here are some links with more info:

The Future of the Media is at Risk
Why Ownership Rules Matter
Relaxing rules raises concerns about diverse media voices

And here is local coverage from North Carolina, where the FCC will hold its next public hearing on this issue, this coming Monday the 31st. If you live down there make sure to come out and represent. And if you can't make it to that, here is a sample letter you can send to the FCC here or here to make your voice heard. Cuz if you don't, it may soon get a lot harder for anyone to make their voices heard in this country.


Here's the info on Monday's meeting:

FCC Media Ownership Hearing
Monday, March 31, 2003
Duke University Law School, Durham, NC
Time: 12:30 PM 5 PM
Location: Room 3043 of Law School (overflow room: 2036, Blue Lounge)

Posted by jsmooth995 at March 27, 2003 6:47 PM

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