by Mike Masnick
Mon, Apr 28th 2008 8:21am
Late last year, the FCC decided to relax media ownership rules in a really minor way. Basically, with the FCC ruling, a newspaper could purchase an also-ran TV station. It could only buy a station that wasn't in the top 4 in the market. Yet, this got people up in arms over some nefarious "media consolidation" claims. Yet, these claims make no sense. There are more media outlets than ever before in history, and there are more ways and more sources to get your news from than ever before in history. Yes, many of them are online, but that doesn't change the fact that they exist. But apparently, the Senate is unaware of that. It has started a process to invalidate the FCC's changes, claiming that it's "not healthy for this country" to only have a few major media outlets. That might be a point worth debating if it were true, but it's not. Meanwhile, no one's explained what's so problematic about a newspaper company owning a TV station at the same time. Considering that it only applies to 5th ranked or beyond TV stations, it's not as if it will somehow block out the voices from other stations.
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