FCC 11/9 Seattle Hearing on Media Ownership – More Reports

Online Video Service streamed the hearing live. Their website indicates the archive will be available here as of 9 AM (PST?), Monday November 12.

Rarely did that coverage show the faces of the public speakers, though. Better footage was obtained by Fred Schaiche and IFARA. Fred writes that while they covered the whole meeting, at the moment there are only two 9 minute clips available – here and here . Fred is looking for assistance in editing, packaging, and distributing the complete coverage. Contact him at IFARA [at] comcast [dot] net.

KPFA Pacifica Radio has mostly complete audio coverage available for streaming & download. Links to those files, and to MP3 files I made from most of the streamed testimony, with logs, appear two posts below in this blog.


[ The hearing was blogged live over at the Northwest Progressive Institute. ]

LIVE from Town Hall: FCC hearing extended until midnight
by Andrew
Northwest Progressive Institute Official Blog

—> SATURDAY MORNING UPDATE: Well, the hearing finally ended at 1:06 AM earlier today (Pacific time) having gone on two hours and six minutes later than originally intended. The FCC’s moderator got to the very end of the list of people who were signed up to testify. But not everyone whose name he read off came forward: half or more of the people who could have testified after 11 PM had already left thinking they wouldn’t get the opportunity.

Some of the late testimony was highly entertaining. A few of the speakers asked the commissioners if they were still awake or needed to stretch. A few went after Chairman Kevin Martin directly, soliciting a response from him. One speaker, summarizing the mood of the hearing, demanded to know if Martin was paying attention and asked him twice. “Do you understand what we’re saying? That we’re terrified of losing our democracy?” he asked, pausing to wait for an answer. Showing signs of life, Martin appeared to repeat the question, “Do I understand what you’re saying?” and then answered definitely, “Yes”.

Another speaker asked Martin if he was capable of smiling, given his passive expression all evening. Responding to her encouragement, Martin did force a smile. It was pretty funny. Apparently Martin was listening, at least some of the time. If he’s heard the people then he must know there is no popular support for what he has proposed and what he is doing. —>

by Gavin Dahl
Digital Crossroads (WA)

—> At the end of my testimony, I walked across the stage and shook Kevin Martin’s (soft) hand. Soon after the head of the Media Bureau asked me to come backstage to have a word with Martin. Backstage he told me he was glad to hear me thinking of the future, and said: “You’re right.” He was referring to my testimony about the 700mhz spectrum auction. He said he hoped to hear me cheering them as loud as tonight when they do the right thing. Monica, the media bureau chief emailed me a few minutes later, CC’ing the chairman, thanking me for speaking with them. —>

Seattle crowd blasts FCC on big media
by Eric Pryne and Stuart Eskenazi
Seattle Times (WA)

Don’t let big media get bigger. That was the overwhelming message an overflow crowd delivered to the Federal Communications Commission Friday night at a hearing on media ownership at Seattle’s Town Hall. Four FCC commissioners heard it from Gov. Christine Gregoire and Attorney General Rob McKenna, and from young media-reform activists costumed as “media-consolidation zombies” — a dig at what many perceive as the FCC’s willingness to do industry’s bidding. “You become a zombie when your voice isn’t heard,” said Monica Olsson, dressed as a zombie. “That’s what we’re here to stop.” —>

In Seattle, 1100 stand up for media diversity in marathon hearing
by Jonathan Lawson
Reclaim the Media

Advocates of diverse media, local media accountability, and quality journalism are seeing Friday’s FCC media ownership hearing as a triumph. Over 1100 people attended the nine-hour marathon hearing, making it the largest of six such meetings designed to gather public opinion, as the FCC considers proposals to let big media companies buy up even more local TV and radio stations.

The five Commissioners attending the hearing stayed onstage at Seattle’s Town Hall until 1am listening to passionate pleas to reject further media consolidation. A diverse range of northwesterners from five states stepped forth to testify — despite the fact the hearing was announced just five business days in advance. Nearly everyone who spoke opposed deregulation, following a pattern established at previous hearings.

Full Story:

“The turnout in Seattle was phenomenal — in sheer numbers, but also in the breadth and depth of testimony,” said Jonathan Lawson, director of Reclaim the Media. “Despite the absurdly short notice, which kept many out-of-state, rural and working people from attending, the Commissioners heard hours of impassioned and articulate testimony from people across the Northwest, and from across the political spectrum. That more than 1100 people sacrificed their time to attend this fly-by-night hearing demands that they be heard all the way in Washington, D.C.” —>

Editorial: Slow the FCC chairman’s runaway train
Congress should act if necessary to keep the FCC from inviting greater concentration of media ownership
The Oregonian

Did you make it to Friday night’s important Federal Communications Commission hearing on loosening media ownership rules? Chances are you never heard about it. FCC Chairman Kevin Martin announced the hearing five business days in advance, the legal minimum. Worse, he scheduled it for 4 p.m. in downtown Seattle.

If you’ve ever been stuck in Seattle traffic at rush hour on a Friday, you might think Martin was trying to make it difficult for critics to attend. And if that was your suspicion, you were right, according to FCC Commissioner Jonathan Adelstein, one of two Democrats on the panel. “It is clear the FCC chairman does not want you to turn out and participate in tonight’s hearing,” Adelstein wrote in an astonishing guest column in Friday’s Seattle Times. —>

compiled by Rob McCausland
Alliance for Community Media
web: http://ourchannels.org
wiki: http://peg.ourchannels.org

Explore posts in the same categories: FCC, media diversity, media ownership

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