Media content monitoring modus operandi at agency.
Feb. 27, 2014, Fairfax, Va.—An Americans for Limited Government review of prior Federal Communications Commission (FCC) studies on media ownership has revealed that media content monitoring is a regular practice at the agency, with one 2010 study even citing Fox News and its impact on Republican electoral gains in selected districts.
"FCC Media Study No. 9: A Theoretical Analysis of the Impact of Local Market Structure on the Range of Viewpoints Supplied," published by the agency in 2011 authored by Isabelle Brocas, Juan D. Carrillo, and Simon Wilkie in its literature review referenced a 2006 study, "The Fox News Effect" on the political, electoral impact of Fox News in certain regions.
The 2010 FCC study summarized the findings: "indeed there is an impact of the Fox News introduction resulting in a somewhat higher vote for the Republican candidates than would be expected."
Overall the agency considered how media ownership shapes content and in turn political outcomes: "the ownership of media outlets matters viz-a-viz viewpoint, and that the informational content of a media market can have an effect on how people make decisions such as choosing whether or not to vote and, when they do, who to vote for."
"Why is the FCC concerned with how media ownership shapes political outcomes, voting behavior, and viewpoint diversity?" asked Americans for Limited Government President Nathan Mehrens.
The FCC study's literature review referenced another report that found that Washington Post subscribers were 8 percent more likely to vote for the Democrat candidate for governor than Washington Times subscribers.
"We conclude the FCC has as a powerful interest in examining the relationship between ownership structure and market performance, in terms of the efficiency of transmission of information and the diversity of viewpoints in the market," the report stated.
Mehrens questioned the agency's mission on its face: "With its long history of monitoring media content and its recent foray into newsrooms, it is time for Congress to finally put an end to the FCC's content evaluation programs and viewpoint diversity mission. The federal government has no business in trying to dictate diversity in the 21st Century media environment that includes traditional and new media sources that were never imagined when the agency was formed."
"The FCC is supposed to sell spectrum and they should stick to that," he added, concluding, "With satellite, Internet and streaming technologies, and the ability to transmit today practically limitless, a monopoly on the dissemination of ideas is impossible. The original justification for the agency is now antiquated. There is no legitimate government interest in monitoring media content and viewpoint diversity to control media ownership."
Of the ten such studies on media ownership that were issued in 2010 by the FCC, at least six looked directly at content or content-based metrics, market preferences, the prevalence of programming for minorities, the implications of national news coverage versus local, and other criteria in determining whether stations were viewpoint diverse enough.
Similar studies were conducted in 2006, and every four years before that.
Every four years the FCC is required to produce "limits on the number of broadcast stations (radio and TV) an entity can own, as well as limits on the common ownership of broadcast stations and newspapers… [and] to determine whether the rules are in the public interest and to repeal or modify any regulation it determines does not meet this criteria," according to the agency's website.
In that context, the agency regularly conducts studies on media ownership and how it affects viewpoint diversity. The 2014 review will not be completed until next year.
"Why did the FCC pull its multi-market study monitoring newsroom content?" By ALG Senior Editor Robert Romano, Feb. 27, 2014, at http://netrightdaily.com/2014/02/fcc-pull-multi-market-study-monitoring-newsroom-content/
Americans for Limited Government is a non-partisan, nationwide network committed to advancing free market reforms, private property rights and core American liberties. For more information on ALG please visit our website at www.GetLiberty.org.
July 17, 2013
16 Republicans senators advise and concede the filibuster on executive nominees.
The Department of Justice seems to have some incredibly misplaced priorities if it believes the Zimmerman case that has proven to be impossible to prove on the facts is a better use of time than the many scandals that have broken the American trust in government.
Elena Kagan's dissent in Koontz v. St. Johns River Management: Majority opinion "threatens to subject a vast array of land-use regulations, applied daily in states and localities throughout the country, to heightened constitutional scrutiny." Yes. Exactly.
The national debt has somehow stood at $16.699 trillion for 56 straight days even as the Fed continues to purchase $1.48 billion of treasuries a day.
July 9, 2013, Fairfax, VA—Americans for Limited Government President Nathan Mehrens today issued the following statement urging Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) not to be intimidated by Senate Democrat threats to repeal the filibuster from Senate Rule XXII:
"Senate Republicans must not be intimidated from asserting their rights as the minority party in the Senate. Rule XXII is very clear that it takes 67 votes to amend Senate rules. Any change to rules by a simple majority would clearly violate standing rules and break almost a century of precedent. Senate Democrats should also be warned that if they do repeal the filibuster in this manner, it will be for all time. When, not if, Democrats again find themselves in the minority, this will be used against them.
"Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell should not be fearful of using the filibuster against nominees like Richard Cordray to the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, Gina McCarthy to head the Environmental Protection Agency, Thomas Perez to head the Labor Department, or Obama's nominees for the National Labor Relations Board. This is nothing more than an idle threat by the Senate majority to bully Republicans into allowing the Senate to become little more than a rubber stamp for nominees."
Americans for Limited Government is a non-partisan, nationwide network committed to advancing free market reforms, private property rights and core American liberties. For more information on ALG please call us at 703-383-0880 or visit our website at www.GetLiberty.org.
June 17, 2013
Unintended consequences have a way of coming back to bite you.
Even if it's only metadata and not the contents of phone calls, emails, search engine requests, chat sessions, and financial transactions being accessed, it is still the constitutional equivalent of kicking in the doors of U.S. citizens. Either way, rights are being violated.
For the UN climate conference in Bonn the bear to worry about was not Polar, but Russian.
ALG's Mehrens: "A lot of people are not aware that under federal law, a federal agency is allowed to enter into a collective bargaining agreement with a union that has provisions where employees of the agency, in this case the IRS, are allowed to do union work on the taxpayer's time and get paid for it."