The FCC has extended to April 17 the date by which Reply Comments must be filed in the Commission’s multiple ownership proceeding. Comments were to have been filed by April 3, but several public interest groups requested more time to respond to comments filed in the proceeding by media industry groups and also to see whether the Supreme Court decided to review the decision of the Third Circuit Court of Appeals decision overturning the FCC’s 2007 revisions to its ownership rules (we summarized the Third Circuit decision here). The groups requesting the extension expect that, by April 13, the Supreme Court will decide whether or not to hear appeals of the Third Circuit decision filed by media companies and the NAB. While the groups asked for a 30 day extension, the Commission only granted two weeks, to April 17.
This proceeding is examining all of the FCC’s ownership rules, and specifically proposes abolition of the radio-television cross-ownership rule and liberalization of the rules limiting the common ownership of broadcast stations and daily newspapers. The FCC has also indicated that it is looking closely at television shared services agreements, and at circumstances in which waivers of other local ownership rules might be appropriate. For more information about the specific proposals advanced by the FCC, see our summary of this proceeding here.