Ownership decision by late spring

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On C-SPAN Friday, Federal Communications Commission chairman Michael Powell
said to expect a decision on any changes to the media-ownership rules by "very
late spring."

Responding to calls from viewers, Powell again complained of the "treadmill"
of having to review the rules every two years (at the direction of Congress)
and explained the court's presumption that the rules are to be jettisoned unless
the FCC can prove that they are needed.

On the issue of indecency, he said he wishes the fines were more
"significant," pointing to the increases in the number of prosecutions and
fines over the past few years, but he also reiterated that the commission should
take a conservative approach to speech regulation.

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