The Federal Communications Commission’s quadrennial review of media ownership rules, already delayed two years, is delayed again. There will be no vote on the rules until early next year, at the earliest.
Under pressure from critics of any weakening of media ownership rules, the FCC agreed to open up a comment period on a related report documenting minority ownership. That report, released last month at the same time chairman Julius Genachowski circulated a draft order loosening media ownership rules, showed that people of color owned just 3.6 percent of TV stations and 8 percent of radio stations.
Stunned by the findings, media interest groups and congressional Dems lashed out at the FCC for for proposing to lift the ban on owning a radio station and newspaper in all markets—and allow TV station and newspaper cross-ownership in the top 20 markets—when the agency’s own data showed minority ownership to be dismally low.