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Powell Urges Congress to Rewrite Media Laws; Top FCC Aides Quit

HeadlineAug 19, 2003

Federal Communications Commission Chairman Michael Powell says the FCC will examine the effects of concentration in media ownership this fall. This comes following mass criticism against the agency’s vote to rewrite the nation’s media ownership laws to allow for greater mergers in the television and newspaper world.

Powell made the surprise announcement in Aspen Colorado at an annual gathering of telecommunications executives.

Powell acknowledged, “There is a sentiment being expressed by the American public, a concern about the media, a concern about big media.”

He challenged Congress to draft new legislation to provide the FCC with clearer direction.

Meanwhile Marsha MacBride, Powell’s chief aide on the media ownership regulations, announced yesterday she would be resigning. Powell’s media adviser Susan Eid also recently left the FCC. Powell dismissed reports that he would soon step down.

Also yesterday, The Media Access Project and other public interest groups yesterday filed a request to bar the FCC from implementing the new rules.

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