NAA: The FCC’S Media Ownership Ban Hurts Journalism

The Newspaper Association of America has said this week that it has long advocated for the repeal of the media ownership rules that prevent the cross ownership of radio, television, and newspaper in the same market as a way to promote localism, diversity and competition.

However, the Federal Communications Commission and the Courts have repeatedly determined that the rules are not accomplishing their intended effect.  

The NAA says that, to the contrary, the facts show that the ban is hurting investment in long-term investigative journalism, a harm that greatly outweighs any perceived positive impact the rules may have, and could be better achieved through other regulatory or legislative mechanisms – a minority tax credit, for example, would greatly promote diversity ownership and viewpoints. More importantly, a tax credit could do so without having a net negative effect on journalism.

An Order is expected to be circulated on 30 June, and the NAA hope to work with the Commission towards an end to this outdated rule, the NAA said.  

The NAA has also publicised  FCC Commissioner O’Rielly’s recent blog posting on Principles for Media Ownership Reform supporting the movement towards repealing the media ownership rules.  

The NMA and members recently had an informal meeting with FCC Commissioner Mignon Clyburn, who has served as acting chair of the Commission, contrasting the liberalisation of local UK cross-media ownership achieved by its past campaigns.