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The FCC's Broadcast Media Ownership and Attribution Rules: The Current Debate


In recent years, many television stations have entered into sharing arrangements with other stations in their local market to jointly sell advertising and/or produce local news programming, typically with one station managing that shared operation and perhaps providing most or all of the staffing and other resources. The FCC sought public comment on how, for the purposes of the media ownership rules, to attribute control of a broadcast television station that has entered into such a sharing arrangement. Currently, the only sharing agreement-related attribution rule for television stations covers local marketing agreements in which one station both purchases blocks of time from another station in the same market and sells the advertising for the purchased time- that is, the broker station provides both the programming and the advertising-for at least 15% of the brokered station's broadcasting time. The FCC has enforced this as a bright-line rule. As long as (1) the block of time covered by an agreement does not exceed 15% of the brokered station's programming time, and (2) the agreement contains a certification and perhaps other language indicating that the licensee of the brokered station maintains ultimate control over station finances, personnel, and programming, the agreement will not trigger the attribution rule. Other evidence is considered immaterial. As a result, in many cases the FCC has not deemed a station to have control over another station in the same market even if such control is considered to exist, and must be reported, under generally accepted accounting practices. Such agreements create what is known in the industry as "virtual duopolies." In late 2012, the FCC released-and made available for public comment-a report on broadcast ownership by gender, ethnicity, and race, and invited the public to comment on how its proposed ownership rule changes might affect female and minority ownership. It delayed adoption of new broadcast ownership rules until those public comments could be analyzed. It is expected to adopt new rules early in 2013.


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# File Name Document Date Order ID: Number of Pages Price
1 R42436.pdf Jan 10, 2013 R42436 29 $19.95 Add to Cart

Older Versions:

The FCC's Broadcast Media Ownership and Attribution Rules: The Current Debate  [Order No: R42436  Release Date: Sep 19,2012  Pages: 28]

The FCC's Broadcast Media Ownership and Attribution Rules: The Current Debate  [Order No: R42436  Release Date: Mar 29,2012  Pages: 28]

The FCC's Broadcast Media Ownership and Attribution Rules: The Current Debate  [Order No: R42436  Release Date: Mar 22,2012  Pages: 27]