ERIC Number: ED318413
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1989-Oct
Reference Count: N/A
Diversity of Voice? The FCC's Bright-Line "Anti-Monopoly" Rule.
Haddock, David D.; Polsby, Daniel D.
The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) has long had rules that prohibit anyone from owning more than one television station in any given location. Two of the stated purposes behind the FCC's anti-monopoly rules are to foster diversity of programming for the sake of First Amendment interests, and to promote programming among media outlets in every market, objectives which the anti-monopoly rules may actually frustrate. Given the FCC's Table of Allocations, this rule has no effect on the number of stations currently operating in large markets; but this was not always true, nor is it true today in at least some small markets. So far as "diversity" is concerned, it becomes extremely difficult to conceptualize how one would regulate "in the public interest" because of the multitude of theoretically, although not empirically, incomparable dimensions that belong to the domain of diversity. The argument of this paper is that pure theory has gone about as far as it can go, and that an infusion of data will be required in order to complete the description of what a desirably diverse world of programming would look like. It is argued that those data could be produced easily and cheaply if the FCC changed its anti-monopoly rules to make them fuzzier and more standard-like than they currently are. (GL)
Publication Type: Opinion Papers; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A