Stung by a hollow court victory, Sinclair Broadcasting Group Inc. is asking federal
judges to rehear a case that led to a court order for the Federal Communications
Commission to rewrite limits on television duopolies.
The court frowned on a rule requiring eight separately owned stations to
remain before one owner can control two in a market, but left the restriction in
place pending FCC revision.
The judges also upheld a rule attributing local marketing agreements toward
broadcasters' ownership tallies.
Consequently, Sinclair must unwind LMAs in Columbus and Dayton, Ohio;
Charleston, S.C.; and Charleston, W. Va.
Sinclair argued that the limits should have been vacated immediately. "Unless the
rule is vacated, the FCC will continue to use ... a rule that is arbitrary and
capricious and that cannot be readopted," Sinclair told the federal appeals
court in Washington, D.C.