Comments Continue On FCC Ownership Reporting Proposal
August 13, 2009 at 5:01 AM (PT)
The NAB's comments in the FCC's docket on new ownership reporting requirements say that the present docket doesn't allow for informed comments because no draft version of the new Form 323 or additional descriptions of the changes being proposed are included. "(I)interested parties cannot realistically assess the burdens associated with this new information collection and, thus, cannot file meaningful comment," the NAB says. The organization is urging the FCC to release a version of the draft Form 323 so that parties can see how changes are being implemented and comment more meaningfully.
Groups Oppose Reconsideration Of Petition For Diversity Order
Meanwhile, a group of organizations including the UNITED CHURCH OF CHRIST, the BENTON FOUNDATION, COMMON CAUSE, the MEDIA ALLIANCE, and the NATIONAL ORGANIZATION FOR WOMEN are opposing the NAB's petition for reconsideration of the "Diversity Order" that proposed the new ownership reporting requirements.
The NAB objected to the extension of biennial reporting requirements to sole proprietors, and the organizations counter that the requirement is "necessary to ensure that the Commission has a complete picture of minority and female broadcast ownership, and does not present any substantial time or record-keeping burdens for sole proprietors. Sole proprietors file this exact ownership report when they obtain their licenses, and as NAB acknowledges, sole proprietors’ demographic data does not change. Thus, sole proprietors can simply resubmit their initial report, which as it stands is only four pages, contains step-by-step instructions, and is largely self-explanatory."
The organizations also oppose the NAB's position against including some nonattributable interests on the reports, saying that the requirement would allow the Commission to get "a more complete picture of minority and female involvement in the broadcast industry. It will also enable the Commission to determine whether certain patterns of non-attributable ownership raise policy questions, and to analyze investment in the broadcast industry and the barriers thereto."