FCC Repeals Net Neutrality Rules In Party-Line Vote
The FCC has just voted to repeal its net neutrality rules put into place by the Obama Administration. The vote, as expected, was 3-2 along party lines. The move effectively trashed the rules that require Internet providers like Comcast or AT&T to treat all web traffic equally.
The agency unwound a decision to regulate Internet access like a utility, and laid down rules prohibiting Internet providers from blocking websites, slowing access or charging a toll for… Read
Internet Whipped Into Frenzy Over FCC’s Proposal To Wipe Out Net Neutrality Rules – Reactions
UPDATED with more reactions: The Internet’s outrage machine cranked into high gear today, offering a searing rebuke of the FCC’s proposal to repeal net neutrality rules.
FCC commissioner Jessica Rosenworcel circulated a statement (on Twitter) that criticized the sweeping proposal, saying it would wipe out court-tested rules and a decade’s work to favor cable and telephone companies.
“This is ridiculous and offensive to the millions of Americans who use the Internet,”… Read
FCC Chairman Proposes Repealing “Heavy-Handed” Net Neutrality Rules
FCC chairman Ajit Pai will propose repealing net neutrality rules put in place during the Obama Administration, calling the regulations both “heavy-handed” and a “mistake.”
The commission will vote on the proposal in December, effectively trashing the rules that require Internet providers like Comcast or AT&T to treat all web traffic equally. He argues that these regulations are too burdensome and stifle innovation.
"Today, I have shared with my colleagues a draft order… Read
AT&T-Time Warner Merger Antitrust Review Casting Pall Over Fox Talks
As a growing list of potential buyers explore talks with 21st Century Fox, any deal will hinge on the actions of a powerful player that’s not present at the negotiating table: the Justice Department.
The outcome of the DOJ’s antitrust review of AT&T’s proposed $85.4 billion merger with Time Warner may determine whether media conglomerates like Comcast or Verizon make a bid for some of Fox’s entertainment assets.
If the Trump Administration moves to block the AT&T-Time… Read
John Malone Says He Doesn’t Know What Antitrust Regulators Are “Smoking”
Liberty Media chairman John Malone wondered aloud what federal antitrust regulators were “smoking” these days, as the Justice Department contemplates a lawsuit that would block AT&T’s proposed merger with Time Warner.
“I personally have very little insight into what the antitrust division is smoking these days,” Malone said during today’s Investor Day conference. “I mean, normally, verticals have always been regarded as pretty straight-forward, low-risk. To the degree… Read
Communications Workers Throw Support Behind AT&T-Time Warner Deal, While Jeff Sessions Evades
The Communications Workers of America weighed in on AT&T’s proposed mega-merger with Time Warner, formally opposing any Justice Department calls for divestiture. The backing comes as Attorney General Jeff Sessions was evasive today during his House Judiciary Committee testimony when a member asked whether the White House had contacted the DOJ in an attempt to influence its decision about the $85 billion deal.
“I would just tell you that I’m not able to accept as accurate… Read
‘Atomic Homefront’ – How A Story About The Threat To Local Journalism Joined A Crusade Against Government Inaction On Radioactive Waste
UPDATE NOVEMBER 14: The story about Atomic Homefront, below, inadvertently gave the impression that local journalists, including those at the St. Louis Post-Dispatch, under-reported the disposal of radioactive waste in the northern suburbs of St. Louis, MO. The new film is indeed a deep dive into the history of the illegal dumping and government lethargy verging on indifference in the face of devastating and ongoing new evidence about the impact of the. And it does come… Read
Sinclair Profit And Income Drop; CEO Eyes Tribune Deal Close, Says “Heavy Lifting” At WGN America Is Done
UPDATED at 8AM PT with executive comment. Sinclair Broadcast Group, whose pending acquisition of Tribune Media stands to make the No. 1 local TV player a far more influential colossus, reported declines in third-quarter revenue and profits but praised the FCC’s recent deregulatory moves. It said it expects the Tribune deal to close by early 2018.
Total revenues dipped 3.3% to $670.9 million, compared with $693.8 million in the year-ago quarter. The company identified $3.1… Read
Barry Diller’s Fantasy ‘Island’, Once Drowned, Is Undead
IAC chief and Gotham philanthropist Barry Diller knows things that float will rise to the surface. Six weeks ago, Diller startled New York officials by pulling the plug on Pier 55, his futuristic park and performing arts complex that was going to rise in the Hudson River as a centerpiece in public reclamation of the once-crumbling and abandoned West Side waterfront. Today it appears to be revived.
Known informally as Diller Island, the cost of the project had ballooned… Read
FCC Votes To End 77-Year-Old “Main Studio Rule” In Boost To Sinclair
UPDATED with vote results, other proposals: The FCC has voted today to eliminate the so-called “Main Studio Rule,” which requires local TV and radio broadcasters to maintain studios in the communities where they are licensed. (Often, that means the place where their physical antenna is located.)
Doing away with the rule, which was established in 1940, benefits the largest broadcasters, especially Sinclair, which is set to swallow Tribune Media to become even more of a… Read
NYC Film Czar Julie Menin Follows Up A Grammy Awards Coup With A Timely Focus On Women In The Biz
It took 16 months of arm-twisting, glad-handing, elbow-jabbing, butt-bussing bicoastal diplomacy and numbers-crunching, but January’s 60th annual Grammy Awards will be broadcast by CBS from Madison Square Garden. The ceremony hasn’t originated in New York City since 2003, so the announcement proved to be a very high-profile, thumbs-up event for both Mayor Bill de Blasio and a city agency head more accustomed to complaints than congratulations.
The optics were terrific for… Read
Tribune Shareholders OK Sinclair Deal As Regulators Stop Clock On Review Process
Tribune Media shareholders have overwhelmingly approved a $3.9 billion deal for the company to be acquired by Sinclair Broadcast Group, one that will make Sinclair the nation’s most powerful local TV broadcaster.
The news comes a day after the FCC’s Media Bureau said it was stopping its 180-day clock on a ruling about the transaction, a fairly standard move as the agency seeks additional comments. It said the clock resumes November 2, the same day comments are… Read