Category Archives: Media Ownership

Mergers, diversity of ownership, and multiple perspectives.

CPUC Slaps Charter

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Charter ended up being the successful suitor for Time Warner Cable after Comcast’s offer for the Southern California cable/ISP giant went down in flames.

Charter, which made much of being “not nearly as bad as Comcast” got their merger, but they got it with some conditions attached, noticeably in the State of California, where the Public Utilities Commission went through a robust approval process.

However, Charter was not content with yes for an answer and spent much of the last few months agitating about the merger conditions and trying to get them abated, using typos and other lame arguments to do so.  Continue reading CPUC Slaps Charter

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KCSM TV Spectrum Sale Dissolves Into Lawsuits

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California’s fifth largest public television station, KCSM-TV, has been the property of the College of San Mateo and its governing board, the San Mateo Community College District, for more than half century.

Recently the station, which once trained much of the Bay Area’s broadcasting corps with probably the best educational program ever offered at a public community college, has been very much unwanted property.

The station was put up for sale, twice, and some very reasonable offers from new operators were turned down in favor of a deal with a hedge fund, the Blackstone Group, to have subsidiary Locus Point Networks, eradicate the station entirely by selling its spectrum to wireless companies in the FCC’s spectrum auction.

The get rich quick scheme foundered. The District’s authorized bidder, who appears to have been VP Jan Roecks, failed to make a bid at some point in the complex procedure and KCSM-TV was dropped from the auction.   Continue reading KCSM TV Spectrum Sale Dissolves Into Lawsuits

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Obscure UHF Discount Feeds Media Consolidation

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Media Alliance has been yelling about media consolidation for a few decades now.  A system that consists of satellites of just a few huge corporations stifles dissent, reduces alternative points of view and cannot hold power accountable to the public.

It is the more obscure corners of broadcast and Internet regulation that determine how much consolidation occurs and at how rapid a pace. In broadcast, which scorned though it may be by Internet aficionados, remains the modality through which the majority of the US population says that they get their news, ownership limits have been the tools to slow the rate of ownership concentration. Continue reading Obscure UHF Discount Feeds Media Consolidation

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FCC Responds to Radio Death – 9 Years Later

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Update 2-6-2017: Entercom has announced they will turn in KDND’s license rather than defend the water-drinking contest. The license surrender will be part of Entercom’s merger with CBS Radio.

Nine years after the death and four years after the filing of a petition to deny license renewal by Media Action Center (a fiscally sponsored project of Media Alliance), the FCC has finally convened a hearing on the 2007 death of Jennifer Strange.

Inside Radio Coverage of Entercom’s surrender

Sacramento Bee Coverage of Entercom’s surrender

Bradcast Interview with Sue Wilson (KPFK-FM Los Angeles)

Continue reading FCC Responds to Radio Death – 9 Years Later

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DirecTV Sued For Anti-Competitive Collusion

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The Department of Justice filed suit against DirecTV (commonly known as AT&T after the recent merger) for anti-competitive collusion in violation of antitrust law.

The suit comes as DirecTV parent corporation AT&T has petitioned the Department of Justice and Federal Communications Commission for another mega-merger with Time-Warner’s content division. Continue reading DirecTV Sued For Anti-Competitive Collusion

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PUC Needs Consumer Advocates: Reappoint Sandoval

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Update:  Sadly, Catherine was not re-nominated by Governor Jerry Brown. A big loss for California’s consumers.

Catherine Sandoval is one of the most qualified commissioners to ever serve on the California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC). The first person of Latino descent to serve on the agency in its 100-year history, she has been a determined public interest advocate and fighter for real people against the massive corporate interests the agency regulates.
Continue reading PUC Needs Consumer Advocates: Reappoint Sandoval

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