You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

USC hosts FCC ownership talk

Nets, media congloms want less rules; creatives say no

Hollywooders will finally get a chance to sound off in person on the Federal Communications Commission’s proposed easing of media ownership rules.

USC’s Center for Communication Law & Policy will host a hearing on the issue Monday, two months after an East Coast snowstorm forced a last-minute cancellation of the event.

Four of the five commissioners had been set to attend the cancelled confab; Monday’s forum will by attended only by commissioner Michael Copps, who has been a persistent advocate of public discussion of the issue. Commissioner Jonathan Adelstein may participate by videoconference.

Other participants will include writer-producer William Blinn; the American Federation of Television & Radio Artists prexy John Connolly; Jay Harris, founding director of the USC Center for the Study of Journalism and Democracy; UCLA professor Darnell Hunt; TV producer Jerry Isenberg; Marty Kaplan, associate dean of the USC Annenberg School for Communication; ABC Entertainment exec VP Mark Pedowitz; and Tribune Co. VP Shaun Sheehan.

There will be a 45-minute public comment period.

The forum — the only such event in Southern California — comes six weeks before the FCC is skedded to take a vote. Washington insiders expect the FCC to approve raising the current 35% cap on the national audience a broadcaster can reach to as much as 50%.

Other rules up for review include the bans on owning a TV station and newspaper in the same major market and on owning multiple media outlets in one market.

Nets and media congloms have been pushing for easing the regs, asserting that they are outmoded amid hundreds of broadcasting and satcasting channels. But showbiz guilds and independent creators have warned against loosening the rules, contending that congloms already have too much power in owning content and distribution pipelines.

Earlier this month, media mogul Barry Diller backed opponents of deregulation and advocated a revival of strong limits on the financial interest that nets, cablers and satcasters can have in companies that produce entertainment.

Sandra Ortiz, exec director for the USC center, said, “There has been a lot of continuing interest in the Los Angeles community for us to hold the hearing.”

The only officially sanctioned FCC hearing was held Feb. 27 in Richmond, Va.

Adelstein is expected to attend a hearing on the issue Saturday at San Francisco City Hall.

More TV

  • THE MASKED SINGER: The Butterfly in

    TV Ratings: 'Masked Singer,' 'The Moodys' Lead Fox to Wednesday Win

    Fox walked away with a win in the Wednesday night TV ratings, thanks to another solid performance from “The Masked Singer” and the debut of its new comedy miniseries “The Moodys.” “The Masked Singer” was down a fraction on last week both in terms of rating, coming in at a 1.8 among adults 18-49, and [...]

  • Dark

    'This Is Just the Beginning,' Netflix Exec Says of Non-English Programming

    Netflix is just “scratching the surface” of what it plans to do in non-English-language programming, the company’s head of international originals said Thursday, adding that, for the streaming giant, “Hollywood is not the be-all and end-all of storytelling.” The streamer’s success with series such as Germany’s “Dark” and Denmark’s “The Rain” means it will go [...]

  • Gabrielle Union Julianne Hough

    Julianne Hough Praises Gabrielle Union for 'Speaking Her Truth' on 'AGT' Controversy

    Julianne Hough addressed Gabrielle Union’s revelation yesterday that she had a five-hour meeting with NBC about the culture at “America’s Got Talent.” Speaking during an appearance on the “Today” show this morning, Hough commended Union for standing up for herself, and also congratulated NBC for agreeing to sit down with her for discussions. “When I [...]

  • Eloise Kay Thompson

    MRC Lands Film, TV, Live Stage Rights to Kay Thompson's 'Eloise'

    Indie film and television studio MRC has acquired the rights to beloved children’s book series “Eloise,” written by Kay Thompson and illustrated by Hilary Knight and first published in 1955. The deal spans film, TV, live stage and related ancillary rights. MRC plans to work closely with Handmade Films, and work with the Thompson estate, [...]

  • Bob Bakish Viacom CEO

    Shares of ViacomCBS Dip in First-Day Early Trading

    Shares of the newly combined ViacomCBS were off in early trading, a sign that Wall Street continues to look for new signs of growth after two of the best-known names in entertainment merged to vie with bigger rivals. Shares of the company’s new common stock were off 59 cents, or 1.38%, in late-morning trading on [...]

  • Reprisal -- "On the Principles of

    TV Review: 'Reprisal' on Hulu

    “Reprisal,” a new Hulu drama setting out to tell a grim story of bloody revenge, aims at a clever pitch-darkness. It more often lands on a sort of congenital sourness, one that grows choking at the series’s hour-long episode lengths. It’s an unfortunate miss for series star Abigail Spencer, an appealing performer who deserves a [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content