In the past couple of weeks, there's been a tizzy of activity involving a law abolished more than 20 years ago, upheld by the public media black hole otherwise known as the First Circuit Court of Appeals, and even when it was on the books, it wasn't all that well enforced.
Yes, it's the dreaded (wait for it!) Fairness Doctrine. So why did this happen?
Well, two groups -- Free Press, and the Center for American Progress -- dared to publish a study documenting that 91% of American talk radio was skewed toward right-wing commentators.
This study led to a lot of foaming of the mouth by the political right wing. Broadcasters got their smelling salts, an attempt to reinstitute the Doctrine in the U.S. House lost badly, and even the local media, whose name is sponsored by the letter "T", got into the act.
That's an amazing response for a law that's been dead for 20 years, and which even if it comes back probably won't improve the state of radio. It does say that these forces are on the defensive, and gives hope and encouragement to the Rebel Alliance.
DISCLAIMER: The opinions expressed on this
website are those of the individual members of Chicago Media
Action who authored them, and not necessarily those of the entire
membership of Chicago Media Action, nor of Chicago Media Action
as an organization.
FAIR USE NOTICE: This site contains copyrighted material the use of which has not always been specifically authorized by the copyright owner. We are making such material available in our efforts to advance understanding of environmental, political, human rights, economic, democracy, scientific, and social justice issues, etc. We believe this constitutes a 'fair use' of any such copyrighted material as provided for in section 107 of the US Copyright Law. In accordance with Title 17 U.S.C. Section 107, the material on this site is distributed without profit to those who have expressed a prior interest in receiving the included information for research and educational purposes. For more information go to: http://www.law.cornell.edu/uscode/17/107.shtml. If you wish to use copyrighted material from this site for purposes of your own that go beyond 'fair use', you must obtain permission from the copyright owner.