Arbitrary and capricious indeed


Everybody seems to agree that the FCC’s action on cross-ownership was arbitrary and capricious. Some also believe its lack of action on other broadcast ownership issues is equally arbitrary and capricious. Where there is a lack of agreement is whether Chairman Kevin Martin and crew went too far or not far enough when it opened up the top 20 Nielsen DMAs to broadcast/print cross-ownership clusters. The National Association of Broadcasters is joining the crowd filing lawsuits on the matter, squarely on the "didn’t go far enough" side of the equation.
At the time of the FCC’s 12/18/07 vote on the matter, NAB called the cross-ownership action a start. They will now see if the judges at the District of Columbia Circuit Court will prod the FCC to keep moving on ownership deregulation. In addition to extending cross-ownership rights to smaller markets, NAB would particularly like to see more regulatory room to form television duopolies.