FCC waives deadline on waivers


But only for 30 days. Media companies interested in commenting on an extension of their waivers to operate newspaper/broadcast business combinations have an extra month to put together their thoughts and get them into the FCC. The rule which would legalize such pairings in the top 20 DMAs is currently tied up in court. This is the second extension – comments were originally due 10/7/08, then 11/7/08, and now the deadline is 12/8/08.

Petitioners, including Cox Enterprises, Calvary Inc., Bonneville International, Scranton Times LP and Morris Communications want an open-ended waiver which will expire 90 days after the issuance of a final court order on pending judicial challenges to the Commission’s modified newspaper/broadcast cross-ownership rule.

RBR/TVBR observation: This is simple common sense. No entity should be forced to sell off part of a legally-formed business operation while the rules are in flux. It is simple common sense in a robust trading environment. In the current stagnant trading environment, it is simply practical. The FCC cannot force a spin-off if nobody is able to buy.