FCC Sets First Hearing Date


The FCC has firmed up details for its first public hearing on its latest crack at media ownership rules.

The Oct. 3 hearing will be in two parts, the first at the Davidson Conference Center at the University of Southern California in L.A. from 1 p.m.to 4:30 p.m., the second closer to the airport at El Segundo High School in El Segundo from 6:30 p.m. to 10 p.m.

California Democrat Rep. Diane Watson said earlier in the week she was hoping to get 600-800 people to show up to weigh in on the impact of consolidation on diversity.

The FCC pledged to hold a half-dozen or so meetings on proposed media ownership changes that would allow companies to own more TV stations and own both TVs and newspapers in the same market. The commission describes the hearing as an effort "to fully involve the public in the process of the 2006 Quadrennial Broadcast Media Ownership Review that the Commission is currently conducting."

The review is a congressionally-mandated look at all its rules, but the review also includes deregulatory rule changes the FCC passed in 2003 but were rejected by a federal court for insufficient justification.