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UNC Center for Media Law and Policy Hosts FCC Panel on Media Ownership

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The UNC Center for Media Law and Policy and Common Cause will host a public discussion on the UNC campus at 5:30 p.m. on Feb. 20 about the Federal Communication Commission’s media ownership rules and their impact on media’s ability to meet the information needs of North Carolina communities.

The FCC is reviewing its ownership rules and is considering scrapping the radio/TV cross-ownership rules, loosening the newspaper/TV cross-ownership rules, and leaving in place the radio and TV local market ownership caps.

Former FCC Commission Chair Michael J. Copps will introduce the topic, and a panel of media and academic experts will discuss how the current FCC rules and proposed rule changes affect local accountability journalism.

The program is free and open to the public and will be held in the Pleasants Family Room in Wilson Library. Audience members will be encouraged to comment and ask questions.

Panelists will include the following:

  • Michael J. Copps, former FCC commission chair
  • Jim Goodmon, president and CEO, Capitol Broadcasting Company
  • Jane Mago, executive vice president and general counsel for legal and regulatory affairs, National Association of Broadcasters
  • Bob Phillips, executive director, Common Cause North Carolina
  • Penny Abernathy, professor and Knight Chair in Journalism and Digital Media Economics, UNC School of Journalism and Mass Communication
  • Teresa Artis (moderator), former vice president and general counsel, Capitol Broadcasting Company
  • Orage Quarles III, president and publisher, The (Raleigh) News & Observer

This event will continue a discussion begun a year ago when the Center for Media Law and Policy convened 50 media scholars, professionals, attorneys and community leaders to discuss how Internet, cable television, satellite television and mobile broadband service providers could help promote local accountability journalism in North Carolina and the nation. The connection between FCC ownership rules and local accountability journalism was considered in that meeting.

The UNC School of Journalism and Mass Communication followed up the initial discussion with a report recommending ways to help meet the information needs of communities.

The UNC Center for Media Law and Policy is an interdisciplinary research center run jointly out of UNC School of Law and the UNC School of Journalism and Mass Communication. The center serves as a forum for study and debate about the broad array of media law and policy issues facing North Carolina, the nation and the world. Read more about the center at http://medialaw.unc.edu/.

For more information, visit the media law center's "The FCC, Media Ownership and the Tar Heel State" event page, or contact the media law center’s co-director Cathy Packer at clpacker@email.unc.edu.

-February 18, 2013

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