Copps to Networks: Cover FCC Rulemaking

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Democratic Federal Communications Commission member Michael Copps Monday
turned up the heat on ABC, NBC, CBS and Fox to cover the broadcast-deregulation
story unfolding at the agency.

On June 2, the GOP-controlled FCC is expected to allow the four networks to
own more stations and permit TV stations to buy newspapers in their local
communities.

Copps argued that the FCC is about to unleash a potentially unhealthy round
of media consolidation of which many in the United States are unaware. Why?
Copps said the "Big Four" networks, which stand to gain from deregulation, won't
cover the story.

"It is their public-interest obligation to do so," he said, referring to FCC
license rules that require holders to serve the public interest. "Thus far,
their refusal to cover this issue has been just dreadful."

Last week, calls to several media outlets -- including CBS, NBC and Fox --
were unavailing. A CBS spokesman refused comment and NBC and Fox ignored
requests for comment.

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