FCC testimony on media ownership: Bryan Johnson

My name is Bryan Johnson. I work with KAOS Radio down in Olympia, Washington and I think there are a lot of areas of the media -- and frankly our everyday lives -- that are over-regulated media ownership and that is something that I definitely think should have more rules. I can’t believe I’m saying that.

Look at what we have gotten with the rules as they are now. We have an FCC report detailing the harmful effects of media consolidation being buried, recently released. We have video news releases being presented as actual news. We have reporters paid by the government to promote the government’s agenda -- of course, Judith Miller, if you are familiar with what New York Times syndicated columnist Armstrong Williams did to promote No Child Left Behind. We have format radio leading to a lack of access for local up-and-coming musicians, lack of minority ownership and media outlets, and excess fines that corporate media can simply roll into their budget but that can knock out community media with one fell swoop… with one word.

And this has all happened with the rules the way they are now. And what’s going to happen if its deregulated even further? We have to protect localism, promote minority news sources, and maintain our right to receive all sorts of information from all sorts of people and maintain the cross-ownership ban. Thank you.

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The media's job is to interest the public in the public interest. -John Dewey