Communications: The Media Get the Message

The Federal Communications Commission was worrying about media monopolies long before Spiro Agnew ever left Maryland. Last week the FCC finally moved to curb joint broadcasting-publishing companies that it considers to hold "undue influence on local public opinion." It promulgated a rule forbidding the owner of any TV station, AM-FM radio operation or newspaper to acquire another outlet in the same community.

At the same time, the FCC proposed for future action a drastic follow-up regulation that would break up existing multiple-media combines in local markets. The second measure—which faces a long and undoubtedly contentious inquiry before it can take effect—would...

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