The FCC has extended the comment deadline in two proceedings looking at imposing new public interest obligations on TV broadcasters (and potentially, at some point in the future, on radio stations as well). Both proceedings are an outgrowth of the FCC’s Future of Media Report, that suggested that broadcasters be made to be more responsive to their communities through better documentation of how they are meeting their public interest obligations. We mentioned in our post on January FCC deadlines last week, that the reply comment deadline on the Notice of Proposed Rulemaking on the online public inspection file, which was originally scheduled for last week, has been extended until January 17. In addition, the initial comments on the Notice of Inquiry on the development of a form on which broadcasters would report on their public interest programming (to replace the Form 355 that was adopted but never implemented) were due on January 17, but the due date for those comment has been extended until January 27, with replies now due on February 9. We summarized the issues raised by the online public file notice of proposed rulemaking here, and those set out in the Notice of Inquiry on the new form to document the public interest service of TV broadcasters here. File comments as to how these proposals would affect your operations, and watch to see what action the FCC takes later this year in these very important proceedings.
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