NAB To FCC: Reevaluate Your Media Ownership Rules


By Adam R Jacobson

The National Association of Broadcasters (NAB) late Thursday submitted a 32-page petition for reconsideration of the FCC‘s quadrennial review of its broadcast ownership rules — a move that comes in Tom Wheeler‘s waning days as FCC Chairman, and amid concerns that Wheeler’s apparent indecision on his future role at the Commission could thwart the continued presence of Democratic Commissioner Jessica Rosenworcel.

With the petition for reconsideration, the NAB on Friday filed a motion with the D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals withdrawing a petition that asked the court to find the FCC’s media ownership order as arbitrary and capricious.

The NAB withdrew its petition as parties cannot seek reconsideration at the FCC while petitioning against the same order through the courts. However, it will now seek to serve as a “party of interest” in Prometheus Radio Project‘s challenge of the FCC’s media ownership order. According to the NAB, “Prometheus believes the order does not go far enough and is seeking even more restrictive broadcast ownership rules.”

The action puts renewed pressure on the FCC to revisit its 3-2 decision in mid-August to largely keep the Commission’s 41-year-old broadcast cross-ownership rules intact.

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Adam R Jacobson is a veteran radio industry journalist and advertising industry analyst with general, multicultural and Hispanic market expertise. From 1996 to 2006 he served as an editor at Radio & Records.