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tv   Today in Washington  CSPAN  June 10, 2011 2:00am-6:00am EDT

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anyone who reads the reports will be impressed by the thoughtfulness and recommendations. it contains a strong and hopeful thorough line. there's never been a more exciting time than the broadband age to achieve the founders vision of a free democracy with a free press and informed and empowered citizens. communications technologies, it also highlights important gaps that threaten to limit the potential. the report does all of this in a thoughtful and fact based way with a full grasp of the opportunities of new technology as well as deep respect for a long established forms of media. that the report deserves this description is no surprise given
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steve walden penn press, diverse unique background. steve worked for many years as a highly respected reporter and editor at publications including newsweek and u.s. news and world report. he's also a successful internet entrepreneur, having created an online community that had millions of americans as regular users and he also wrote for "the wall street journal".com. he was the ideal person to lead the effort on this report, and on behalf of all of us, thank you for your service. this was a group effort within the agency great example of collaboration across departments and grateful to all the staff who worked on this often squeezing on top of their other responsibilities. i want to especially note the deputy chief of the office of strategic planning and the senior counsel, senior adviser for the extraordinary work. i also want to note just to lead into the presentation steve attracted an impressive
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collection of outside journalist academic and scholars to help develop the report that improved professor james hamilton of duke, ellen goodman of rutgers, peter shalem ohio state, cynthia come rf ann byrd. the team conducted more than 600 in-depth interviews and a very diverse range of people across the country held multiple public hearings, made numerous visits and newsreels across the country analyzed scores of studies and compiled more than 1100 comments from the general public. the commission takes pride in this process and in the final product. with that, i would like to turn it over to you to present your findings and recommendations. the floor is yours. please take your time. >> thank you. it has been a great honor to work on this project with this great staff and with the commission. as you mentioned this project was launched at the beginning of
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2010 when it was very clear that we were in a time of rapid and seismic change in the media world. you have on the one hand a tremendous innovation, additional innovation everywhere and every day and at the same time newspapers closings, staff layoffs and the media going through a very serious contraction. so, the idea was to therefore take a good hard look at this and the answer to basic questions. one is our citizens and communities getting the news and information and reporting that the need and what. second is policy that the fcc and others are in sync with the nature of modern media markets especially when it comes to encouraging innovation and advancing public-interest goals. the process, as you mentioned,
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we created an informal working group that basically demanded extracurricular time from many people at the agency across many departments as well as bringing in some really outstanding outside experts to help. would it more than 600 interviews and has a wide range of people we interviewed. media executives, such as leaders, foundations, investors, conservatives, liberals, the old media, new media, really very broad range. we had to public workshops, public comments and significantly we also did a very careful literature review because we're the first ones to study this, there are very outstanding studies and reports that we made great use of. as you mentioned, we were very fortunate to have a really outstanding team, and you
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mentioned the key folks, elizabeth, andrea, james hamilton, ellen goodman, peter shane, cynthia knard and tamara who worked hard around-the-clock on this. we also as you said had people throughout the agency working on this. i'm not going to read all the names as we would use up all the time there we can see that we had contributions from every department which is fitting for the nature of the modern media landscape which isn't silo in the traditional ways that, you know, the agency is divided up. and we made a very aggressive use of free labor and in terms that too much of their work to do and this is really gratifying process. i have to say of all the exciting moments the most
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gratifying moment in the entire process is when one of the folks on the stuff, and i won't mention his name, who said the first four drafts were horrible, said the fifth draft was pretty good, and i know we were finally ready to release. just starting with the six come the first principle that actually has to guide all of this is the first amendment. this confuses a lot of what we talked about and the way that we approach the recommendation as a journalist and i take them very seriously that while we care very deeply about what is happening with journalism we also have the first amendment as the basic parameters for how we approach this both in terms of guaranteeing freedom and placing the limits on the government intervention. the way that the report is structured and by the way the report is now as i have on the web site is a major section on
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the media landscape which is a description of what is happening in the landscape right now. we broke into the sections on commercial media, nonprofit media, non-media institutions by which we mean there are lots of ways people get very important information that don't go through the media. and libraries, schools, government websites, and those are increasingly important ways people get information devotee of the policy and putting the fcc's policies and track record and i am proud really of the commission a pretty tough as some of the fcc i think that speaks well to the commission and its desire to get the right. and then we have recommendations
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to the recommendations are not only for the fcc. we took the sec recommendations very seriously but we also spoke about possible ways that other players in the media landscape can help. the main findings and and not shelf are that first most of the media landscape is actually very vibrant, tremendous amount of innovation will go into more debt about that, but that is a central point. and there are some very serious issues and especially the one we keep coming back to over and over again is what we believe is a shortage of local accountability reporting and since i'm going to use this word accountability reporting a bunch of times, i should define it. this is basically things like covering city hall, the school board, the state house, the basic civic institutions holding those institutions accountable and the information citizens need, so it very interesting
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moment where these elements will mean serious harm to communities but paying attention to them will mean we will be able to create i believe the best media system that we've ever had. i know that sounds like hyperbole, but i think when you consider the advantages that have happened and the serious gaps are going to be in a very exciting moment. so first let's talk about the basic backdrop that helps us understand what went on. the contraction of the traditional media. it was sometimes said newspapers would have been a better position of the hit just grown their web traffic and if it were only that easy the truth is that from 20005 to 2009, newspapers online web traffic doubles and
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digital revenue grew $616 million which sounds like a very big sum until you hear that at the same time it lost $22.6 billion this led to the newspaper business print dollars for being replaced by digital lines and if you look at the numbers hard it is print dollars being replaced by digital pennies, and that is the nut of the problem is that it's very hard to outrun the losses in the traditional business model. what are the implications. we ended up focusing a lot on the needy gritty subject, which is staffed. what happens and newsrooms when these kind of revenue contractions happen?
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and it's a really distressing set of numbers when you look at what's happened with traditional media. just in the last few years which means it's now down to the level newspapers had before watergate. a tv network news staff are down by half since the 1980's. news magazine, where i used to work, down by half since the 1980's. if you look a particular communities shall finish to see how this plays out you see the impact. so a study by a few which system the best work in this area of baltimore the look of the "baltimore sun," the "baltimore sun" produced 30 more stores in 2010 years earlier so look at philadelphia these available news but public issues is dramatically diminished over the last three years by many measures air time story account and keyword measurements.
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if you look at a particular news room, the news and observer in 2000 for they had to hundred 50 newsroom employees. by 2011 they had 103. it doesn't take a lot of imagination to see that that can have a really serious impact. and specifically some of the beads that lost reporters, courts, schools, legal affairs, agriculture, environment, state education, fundamental issues of concern is to citizens and of the health of american communities. statehouses. from two dozen three to 2008, when spending by state governments went up by about 20% the number of people covering state government went down by one-third. it's not a good formula if you are concerned about safeguarding taxpayers' dollars. investigative reporting is down. this is a hard, this is hard to come up with numbers that are
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exactly, but to lose. membership in the investigative reporters association from 2000 to three was 5300, and now it is 4,000. the number of submissions for the public service categories and the pulitzer prizes is up 43% from 1984 to 2010. coverage of washington, the washington bureau, 27 states have no washington reporters. the number of your nose down by about a half since the 1980's. religion, religion coverage a topic dear to my heart my chicken with a religion news writers and said what happened in the last year with a set of religion news a the local level was nearly gone, which is very sad because the previous ten years had been a period of real growth in that area. hamsterization this is a term a
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columbia internal review referred to about a hamster wheel and this is the phenomenon of reporters who now have in addition to their regular beat the have a second beat and right for the website and tweet and are learning how to do video it creates the sense they feel like they're hamsters on a wheel. since the work of the federal government i decided to bureaucratize the phrase a little bit and we are now referring to this as hampsterization, and this is a process of when you don't necessarily eliminate the become it's like it's not like there's no one there covering it but reporters are stretched and it means to use a different metaphor if you're talking about a media landscape there are still reporters who can look at the landscape and describe what is there but they have less and less time to turn over the rocks and look in the shadows. you can see in the case of calls reporting eighth important topic, the kaiser foundation did a study and said its interest in health coverage is up, the
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number of reporters is down and they concluded a result of that was a loss of in-depth enterprise stories. education, there's lots of education reporters, but they are less ambitious and doing less debt. same thing with local business reporters. the ceo of bloomberg said it is currently not a market well served. now, i think this obviously has, to communities. it's wasted taxpayer dollars, corruption, schools, the did simon who was a former reporter the "baltimore sun" who may be is better known as the producer of the lawyer at a senate hearing said it's going to be one of the great times to be a corrupt politician and i wasn't there so i don't know who he was looking at when he said that, but i thought it was a very exciting moment. now it's very hard to prove in this case. we are talking the impact is on stories not written. so how do you prove that, how do
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you prove what the impact is? and we try to get at this differently. we interview reporters about what are you doing now compared to what used to do? what did you use to do that you can't do any more? we looked at stories where there was journalism done after the crisis. so for instance, one of the worst mining disasters in recent years is the upper big branch mine disaster in virginia. some fantastic journalism was done after the disaster finding there were more than 1300 violations on the books. so one can only imagine what might have happened, whether there was 29 workers who died might not have suffered the fate of the journalism had gone before the disaster or if more of it had been done before. california is agree to example where the l.a. times eventually did a terrific piece about the chief administrative officer and a working-class city in
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california who was being paid more than $787,000. this was going on for five years, and because bell had no one covering it, taxpayers wrapped up $5.6 million, so we can only imagine if there had been a reporter there whether or not taxpayers would have saved them. as often happens, in situations like this, it is it tends to be the least powerful and the most vulnerable and we were touched by people who talked about not necessarily journalists but people in communities on the front lines to solve problems for communities about this happened to their lives and effectiveness of solving community problems as the contraption that happened. as for instance, an expert on the family court system in michigan said coverage has gotten smaller and smaller in the years.
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why does that matter? what's the impact? he says well, for example, parents whose rights are terminated who shouldn't be terminated it just takes somebody down there to get the story but nobody has ever been down there. one thing that surprised me a little bit is that because the internet and digital tools and general has been so in powering and you can see this in the literally the effect of the internet on helping to topple governments, and in many ways in the ability to have users and citizens engage in the media it has been a very in powering experience. so it surprised me a little but we found a countervailing shift in the other direction but when you don't have a sufficient accountability functioning in communities it leads to a power shift in the other direction towards institutions and government away from citizens and this is because reporters basically right from press
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releases and don't have time to dig is a for instance the que study of baltimore said reported as news is supposed to faster with little enterprising reporting having the officials version is becoming more important. we found official press releases often appear word for word in first account of events though not often noted as such. a government in this study initiates most of the news. i've talked about newspapers so far in great depth because they traditionally played a special role in the ecosystem of communities and tended to be the bulk of the reporting periods of the contraction of newspapers has especial ripple affect the course they are not the only players and other media have played a central role, and i'm not going to go into quite as much debt but i want to quickly go through a radio used to play an important role providing on the resources in communities and in some ways radio is actually
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doing really well and writing. national radio, public affairs, news, talk is booming. it's a very vibrant area. at the same time, local news is not. there were 50 news stations, local radio stations, there are now 30, about a third of the population has the benefit of an all news station. the number of reporters who work for the local stations have been down or as the person who did a study on this said, the number of people when played on the commercial radio news room has been one for quite a few years. tv news. i want to talk about tv news because this is a very interesting and in some ways exciting time for local tv news. local tv news is more productive than it has been perhaps ever. the last seven years the number
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of hours has risen by 45%, and they are increasingly doing very creative things. they are using their multi cast channels more creatively, they are starting to do more mobile applications, user generated content. it's a great opportunity moment for local tv news. there's still the number-one source of news less about market share but they're still the number-one source of news. they are increasingly an important source of online news and the newspaper contruction creates an opportunity for them to do more of the original reporting. technology cuts have gone down so they would be able to hire more reporters and they are relatively profitable mini relative to everyone else in the community. they are not as profitable as they used to be but they had a pretty good year so the local
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news is more important than ever, and i really want to highlight that since i spent most of my time in the print world as a journalist i can admit that there is a little bit of a snobbery on the part of print reporters to the local tv news and i have to say i don't agree with that because i have done circulation journalism and narrow circulation journalism and there is nothing harder and more valuable than coming up with serious substantial reporting and having packaging it in a way that is available and accessible to a very wide range of people and they do that investigative reporting and news that is really the heart and soul of what communities want and need. the next slide is interesting and is basically this is basically the volume of local news minutes. on one axis, left access and
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then the market size on the bottom axis and it's not surprising is that as you get to smaller markets there's less local news being produced. and the economics have become more challenging. of course there's a lot of variation as this points out in a local news. the many that are seizing the moment and doing very exciting things, but some are not. and i do believe that some local tv news operations are not seizing this opportunity. so we have a few problems. the old phrase if it bleeds it leads is still true, maybe even worse than ever. the beat system. most of the beat system like newspapers, less and less is that true which means there's less expertise being developed.
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the study of the l.a. market showed the results of the phenomenon was i think a pretty shockingly small amount of time being spent on the sickly important information. specifically, they said that a little over one minute of a typical half-hour newscast was going to education, health care, government, important topics like that. i think possibly one of the most alarming things that we saw or something that we call pay for play and these are basically situations where a station will allow an advertiser to dictate comment. it's an advertiser that literally says yeah, you can have an added deal and all you have to do is promise you only interview people from our hospital or that you were kafka story list that we have created for you. in one show they actually were charged in, half the guests to appear on the show. things like this, you know, this is not the majority of stations
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buy any means. but nonetheless it is a serious problem, and we had mixed evidence on whether or not it was merely persistent or growing it's a big deal. others that worried us it's that the amount of tv news that was produced and is being produced is up by 35% they did this while cutting staff on average at tv stations. in some ways there are legitimate efficiencies built into the system that might have allowed them to do that. the term is one man band, and that means you used to have a crew of reporters and a sound video person if it was a network show it might be a three-person or four person crew and its as a result of the technology of reporter can be the videographer and the camera person and sound person as well and in some ways
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this is a fantastic development. i talked to reporters who said this is great for one thing i don't have a whole crew with me so i can get into city hall in a way that is less conspicuous than i used to. it makes me more mobile and go more places and the number of people said this could be a fantastic development because instead of having 20 reporters and 20 crew, we could have 40 reporters that's not what has happened. instead of 20 reporters and 20 crew we of 20 reporters or maybe 18 reporters and as a result the reporters are doing more doing the reporting and the shooting and the audio and filing for the website and tweeting. in some cases this works well. i want to make it clear i am not actually of the view this is an inherently bad thing and i don't think many stations used the savings and efficiencies that have gone from this disease the opportunity that they had in the local markets.
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i've offered some criticism was of local tv news but it should be said even the ones i have been talking about arriviste doing local programming. we look at the question of are there other stations during local programming at all? to was a limit to how granular we could get on this but we did for three different analytical approaches take a look at this and they all kind of came out in the same direction, which is about 21% of stations do no local news. if you add in the stations that do for 30 minutes or less, that is about one-third of the stations. now, i am offering no comment on whether that is good, bad or indifferent. i think it's somewhat depends on the situation. it is not necessarily obvious that we would all be better off if every station in america did local news. but it is nonetheless an interesting phenomenon and one
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of importance to the fcc to understand those that all stations to local programming. swift and talking about a contraction of the old media. so two points. first of a two years ago when you talk about the old media, traditional media is a bifurcation between the old guys and you guys. not that the newspapers and tv stations and radio stations are doing innovative things online, too it's just as much as they are printing so that is a distinction that is getting blurred and despite the use of the phrase and the second thing is this is just part of the story. the contraction, if they happened but they were being filled and went by the growth of the new media we would be in great shape so that was a central question is we made a tremendous amount of innovation on activity. where is the trend in the gap and where is it not falling under the caps?
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we can spend the entire time talking about the incredible bounty of innovation that his seventh as a result of the alternative summarized and i think we all have a sense of them but lower barriers to entry, the vast amount of space on line has led to greater diversity of the voices of increased debt for many types of coverage. there's sometimes this i think idea that the internet is a good at providing a way for people to mouth off with uninformed opinions, internet provides opportunity for tremendous debt. technology has reduced the cost of gathering news, producing news and a disturbing news. in some cases substantially. whether you're talking about computerized databases that enable someone to do a story in two hours that might have taken two weeks previously with cost publishing images or video or the most obvious one of all, which is you can use a search engine to find things out that used to take three days to find out.
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citizens are in power and i think it is very telling that if you think about are the most searing use images of the 1960's and 70's from the vietnam war and some images come to mind. there were images shot by brave and courageous professional photographers. the most searing image of the sort we have now is this image of a iranian martyr being shot because she was protesting shot by someone's cell phone, and this is the potential power of user generated content. we've also seen an explosion of new web sites and those that get the most attention, the of the daily collar, politico, there are many others really also very exciting stuff happening on all local level. texas tribune, based citizen,
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chicago news cooperative, these are names i think you are going to hear more and more. these are entrepreneurs concerned about what is going on in the community comes all the gap and tried to move to fit it. some are for profit, some are non-profit, but the have brought tremendous energy. some are even become self-sufficient and profitable. as i said earlier, these are hatchery's, these are tools that are no longer just limited to what we call the web native businesses, they are bleeding into all sorts of different media. maybe one of the area's most is hyper local news, it's kind of a buzzword. well it is a word that had to be invented because it didn't exist before. at least it didn't exist in the same way that it's happening now. that's because the media models for such that in the happiest days of newspapers they couldn't
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get a granular down to a house by house block by block level. it's not economic. you have a weekly in things like that. but hyper local information has gotten more vibrant than it has ever been. a lot of them are not big commercial enterprises, they are sick enterprises and they are not profitable, but they don't have to be. this is a sort of civic enterprise a thousand points of journalism sprouting up in communities around the country. in 2010 as a result of all these changes, a major milestone was achieved which is this is the first unit people of the news on the internet and through the paper newspapers. and if you look at the charts, which is an age breakdown, the left chart is the youngest cohort and the right chart is the older co-worker you can see which way this is heading. so, that is the story of
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abundance. but one of the counter intuitive things we found is that despite this abundance, it turns out you can have an abundance of media outlets and a shortage of reporting. so again, to return to baltimore, where the most in-depth study was done, to research looked and felt there's an enormous number of proliferation ways people can get their news, blogs, radio stations, newspapers, they counted 53 outlets that are doing the news, but then they did an interesting thing, they did a content analysis they looked at the articles and the series on the tv news and they said what was the source of reporting and discover most of it came from the "baltimore sun" and one of the tv stations. as we said before the "baltimore sun" is doing less than they used to be so to use a metaphor of one scholar referred to this
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as the iron core of reporting. it's the iron core that can then be sculpted by affairs and the media food chain but if the odierno core is shrinking there is less to work with. by the way it wasn't just a spew study that from this, there were several different studies looking for several different ingalls that came to the same conclusion. so we can to the conclusion that on this one area of the local accountability reporting so far the new media isn't filling the gap but this was driven home to me i was at a conference put on by the foundation of which has been taking a tremendous lead in funding and stimulating innovation and they brought together the leading local news web sites, the top most influential innovative and most well-financed of the new operations, and they were discarding what they were doing and how many reporters there are and then i counted them up and
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was 88 reporters. that's pretty good until you consider the fact 15,000 reporters have left newsrooms in the last decade so it gives a sense of scale. the energy is there, the excitement, the quality, the innovation, the scale was not. another study from the institute said that there has been a drop of $1.6 billion a year on spending from the newspaper newsrooms. foundations have been trying to make out some of the difference by pouring money into it and in fact one study said they put $180 million over five years. but that tells you something. $1.6 billion per year out 180 million over five years experts in this area including folks who are think our web e evangelists who have high optimism for the nature of the
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web to conclude there are gaps that are not being filled. michelle who did a comprehensive survey on the study's said a tired ideas will replace the traditional news media is wrongheaded and it is past time that academic research on the reports reflect that. mr. dyson who was a pioneer and internet investor said start-ups are rarely profitable by and large no thinking person who wanted a return would invest in the news startup i hope she's wrong, she hopes she is wrong with that as her honest assessment of the current situation. and why is that? some of it is what we refer to as the great unbundling and this is something we were not really conscious of before but the internet made us conscious of it. when your body and a newspaper you worry essentially subsidizing an elaborate scheme developed by the newspaper. you're buying it because you
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might have wanted the box scores or horoscopes or in your case you wanted the tilled international coverage. but perhaps your body and for the back scores better absolutely to become actually subsidizing the city hall reporter. now you don't have to do that. you can go straight to the website that just as the box scores and by the way it's a bitter experience. the change minute by minute. i have a moment theater day i was looking at the box score in the newspaper and i kept staring at it waiting for the score to change because i had gotten used to that. it's a better experience on line. there's another cross subsidy that was happening or bundling which is the advertising side. the ad executives was quoted and i was not able to determine whether this was apocryphal or not he is quoted as often my people tell me i'm wasting half my advertising budget but they can't tell me which half. now he knows which half.
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now the precision of the ad targeting, the precision of advertising metrics enables the advertiser to know how many people were looking at the had and clicking on the had, whether it's the right demographic, how many people have clicked on the data are buying the product it enables advertisers to be very efficient so it has tremendous benefits for advertisers. but it is one of the main factors that has led to the decline in ad rates. rates are on line a fraction of what they are offline. in fact if the rates on line with the same as they are in the print newspapers we wouldn't be having this conversation. the problem would be solved. revenue would be at such a level that would more than pay for the journalism that we've been talking about. so, with lots of discussion why is this, one of the issues is something economists refer to as news in the public good or a
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free riding problem and the issue how is you can get news without paying for it. that's true you can benefit from a news without paying for it. one of the six samples we had in the report is the news of server did a fantastic series about major flaws in the provision system where people are getting out of jail and probation to orderly and there were several hundred people who died as a result of the provision system so they spent several months during this study, the uncovered, the governor fixed it and so now there are people walking around the streets of a rally who are not did who would have been probably the they don't know who they are. there is no way of knowing who they are and what's more is they didn't have to subscribe to the newspaper to have benefited. from what the newspaper did. this is tested basic fact of the way the news is public good works. it's not a.g. need to put in the bottle but it's an explanation
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of why it's hard to make these models work. advertising is disconnected from content because it used to be advertisers wanted to be next to the content because it was a proxy for reaching a certain type of audience. he wanted to reach women aged 25 advertising mademoiselle because you knew that demographic read that. now you can go directly to the demographic without having to put your ad next to a piece of content. it's true for search engines and i think a very remarkable chart shows the percentage of online advertising search engines in 2000 was 1% and now it's 47% and the same is true for social media and things like that it enables advertisers to go to the consumers without putting the ads of the content. it's good for advertisers and consumers. it just means less revenue for the media outlets.
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i've mostly talked about the commercial media, and one of the most interesting things to me about this is learning more about what has been going on in the nonprofit media center to beat the nonprofit media sector has become a much more diverse and very devolving innovative sector and really is a very important part of this puzzle. we even think of as being part of this little public access channels, public access channels realize their original mission which is to provide a platform for people to speak out and being taken up by the internet so they are trying to evolve. they're doing digital literacy and local accountability. journalism schools used to teach journalism through a book come true pedagogy in the classroom. they are increasingly adopted
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what they refer to as the medical school model which is to say why don't we teach journalism by giving this into this is great for students but also the communities. you have thousands of journalism schools on the ground and in the communities and they are not just giving abstract exercise website careerbuilder websites people read. foundations who start to play a major role, no power fm stations which already are important players and our hope is the passage of the recent law and the actions from the fcc will make them even more so. the nonprofit news websites we have spoken about a very exciting. i talked about the local ones, there is important national nonprofits which saw a gap in what they saw was insufficient investigative reporting going on at the national level as a result of these attractions so they created something within the first year they won the
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pulitzer prize so there isn't an inherent get in quality and then come on commercial it can be done in any form. and i want to pause for a second on something i wasn't aware of which is the state public affairs support these are basically c-span at the state level. i mentioned before that as spending by states have gone up the number of state house reporters has gone down. there are 23 states that have the state stands and the jury in depth and quality but the good ones are basically doing what c-span does. the show the legislative hearings and the shows the floor and they do candidate debates. and things like the local tv news would do more. but in only four cases are they being funded by the cable operators in the way that the cable industry funds c-span.
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and in quite a number of circumstances they are funded by the state which in some cases worked out okay but i have to tell you i don't think it is the best model in the world to have the state funding coverage of the state. public broadcasting. obviously the anchor, the biggest player and then on the media world as public tv and public radio. we've run into great that what they do, some of the structural issues, how they are evolving, tremendous innovation on line in the public media space as well to break it down a little bit further on the public tv side there is real strength and educational programming, national public affairs, everything from the front line of newshour, firing line to date myself a little bit, we would say that we think there is not that much local programming on public tv.
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very few public tv stations to local news. we were not able to get a solid number of local programming but it seems that isn't what they do for the most part and really economic limits on that. public radio is trying to do quite a bit more in the local news space. from 2004 to 2,009 the number of public radio stations reporting the carried local news or talk rose from 525 to 61 so they're actually trying to step into the gatt is the sea in the market to and especially the gap we talked about before where commercial news radio is not prevalent in a lot of many parts of the country we have also seen an exciting development which is increasingly the collaboration between the commercial media and nonprofit media. i used to think of these as a sort of parallel universe that operate separately from each other in some cases antagonistic way to each other, and now we
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are seeing some very interesting sending out at relationships evolving. one for a simple, knsd, channel four, nbc in chicago, we want more in-depth work, meanwhile the exciting new start-ups in a scene diego was doing great work so they worked out a deal, voice of san diego gas, a few times a week and a segment called san diego explain and another one called a san diego fact check. it makes the newscast better and it is a huge value to the voice of san diego that gets fantastic exposure. they can then go back to the donors and look at the impact we are having and we are seeing is actually quite a lot and it's -- i think it is potentially a model five years from now we may look at and say this became a
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really significant element in this ecosystem. to work it does require some nonprofits to have a critical mass of revenue. it requires them to have functional business models. so, where does this leave us? the diagnosis to oversimplifying this is - i local, better than ever come of local, municipal level really struggling, national we really haven't talked much about and it is quite a dynamic sere we have our complaints about particular national media and things we like or don't like but i believe it is very dynamic and very vibrant. we are seeking business models tickle on the national level in the ways the on local levels and so i really didn't come away worried about it in the same way as the others. international is a mixed bag. on the one hand you have clearly some of the players we used to
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rely on for international news argon or have pulled back. the regional newspapers like "the chicago tribune," the l.a. times, "boston globe" used to be very important players in oversees coverage and basically have packed up for the most part and do much less. the networks do less. but on the other hand, we have way more people on cable news to the international coverage than we used to. npr has increased come bloomberg has increased, and probably more important as one person put it, the typical citizen has more information at their fingertips about the rest of the world from the internet than a network tv producer did ten years ago. and you can watch bbc and al jazeera and there are other ways you can get information. it's a mixed bag. ..
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and i'm not going to go through all of them but i wanted to mention a couple. a few stacks was a program set up on cable to try to encourage independent programming including local programming. he was supposed that lead to position about the 15% of programming and independent. actually currently less than 1% is used.
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the satellites that aside, operators and the maoist past helping to enable satellite. congress said the icc was set aside somewhere between 7% satellite for educational programming, much in the same spirit of 25% of the commercial commercial -- of the broadcast airwaves from educational programming. the congress set aside between 4% 7%. fcc chose were because the satellite industry with a fledgling industry backed men and women to make sure it would get off onto a cd. at this point, programmers are turned away because the satellite operators have hit the cap and ejecting other programmers. we looked at the fairness doctrine and concluded as i believe all of you have the fairness that turn would undermine news instead of
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improving news and would chill speech. and so even though this was a topic that it already -- opinion saturday been expressed on, we decided to weigh in on at least saying from the point of view of the topic we're looking at, we think that there is no case for reinstituting the fairness act. it would be a bad idea. we came across this fact that came to light recently, that there are shards of the fairness doctrine still on the books. did not make a lot of sense to us that the policy was dead. to have bits of the fairness doctrine on a book of living laws. so i'm glad to see that it's being cleaned out. sponsorship identification. these are the laws and rules the fcc has that basically say the tv station simply like to a pay for play arrangement, like we talked about before. they are latched to do it.
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they do have to disclose it. the problem is they disclose it quickly, on the air and you have to look really carefully and be a very attentive viewer. and they are not disclosing it online. noncommercial broadcasters. the a lot of the issues of whether it's a commercial product testers could have better business models if they have less restrictions. we go into some thoughts there. there were ways in which i think the cpb, the corporation for public broadcasting would like to have more flexibility so that they could better incentivize collaborations and innovation and less duplication and more local programming. they agree with the idea that they took my local programming, but to some extent they are hemmed in by the rules that govern them. something else came to us, which is brought to our attention by the religious broadcasters. religious broadcasters have
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asked. they pay to have the ability to spend some of the time, up to 1% of their time raising money for charities. perhaps raising money for a soup kitchen in their community or global hunger charities that fits very much with their mission and it also provides useful information. currently the fcc provides waivers in the case of extraordinary circumstances like a tsunami or hurricane. i frankly had a hard time understanding the justification for why the fcc would want to be in a position where he could say okay come you have a waiver for a catastrophe that involves rain and weather, but a famine killing a million people in africa, no, that doesn't get a waiver because it's not a natural disaster. last but not least, brought in. obviously i think you've heard about right and in other capacities at the fcc.
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i wanted went to tennis to the the topic we're focusing on. and i look at it from two different ways. one is a negative way, that if you were to summon any community that has on the one hand the speakers contracting and not doing that he used to do, but maybe some really good things i might to counterbalance them and you have the worst newspaper, but you're not online, you're worse off. you have the worst of both worlds. from an economic point of view, it's also important because a lot of entities trying to develop successful business novels, the more people viewing them, the more likely they'll be able to sustain the business model. the scale they need to succeed will be approved as the universal brought in. and the final fcc thing i wanted to talk about is a very important one, which is the historic public obligation of
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broadcasters aired we spent a lot of time and patience looking at this. as you know, there was an effect and has been since the very beginning a quick prayer quote that taxpayers provide the use of the public's airwaves to broadcasters in exchange for a commitment that they serve the communities. this is a pack of broadcasters, almost a broadcasters only embrace. they very much like this arrangement and they support this but to pull. and i should say even during deregulation, even liberals receive regulated in the 1980s, the principle still remained was not abolished. that broadcasters have purchased the deal is supposed to provide response to issues of concern to the community. so how's this for now? in the last 75 years, the fcc is granted the estimate of 100 license renewals.
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and only four cases was the license renewal denied because the license fee failed to meet the public interest obligation -- programming obligation. the last 30 years, no one license has been denied on these grounds. they are required to have what are called issues program list that is supposed to be the mechanism for enforcing the current obligation and stations but in this file, and a cabinet, on paper, a list of what they think a significant issue sorry. the fcc has been fairly vague about what do we mean by a significant issue? which we mean by programming? so, people -- stations have gone to be creative in some states on how they define it. for instance, when station we saw their issues program list, with the listed in the area of
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they were serving important community leads with america's next top model casting call, an open casting call for cycle 14 of america's next top model on july 11 at 7 sushi ultra lounge, sponsored by senators heron lakes and it went on and on like that. some stations had very detailed memos describing very significant public affairs programming debut, i've obviously picked out one of the more amusing ones. there's actually a broad range. but it's a broad range because stations really don't know what is expected of them. and part of this -- i don't want to sound like i'm basically saying this is the fcc staff that was screwing around this whole time and if we just been on the ball we could have done this. you know, i think he might make an argument at some points there
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might've been for many policy here are. but the biggest issue is there is a real dilemma. there is a real dilemma, which is on one hand you have this real concern. on the other hand you have the first amendment. companies get into a situation of getting prescriptive enough that you can have a very easy to enforce rule, you start to a situation where someone at the fcc is going to have to decide what is important legitimate programming? at the back off if they were not going to get that detail, but we want to have certainly brought principles, then u.k. fake and he gave and weight as a key feature of the program issues. in short, i think this system is broke. the public is system currently has the fcc is broken. we also talk about non-fcc area. i am only going to talk about two, even though we go into a number of them in the report. two in particular want to mention.
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tax issues. one thing that came back a number of times from websites was, you know, we are trying to create websites, but we are very confused about whether we are going to get dean by the irs and shut down the website because i wanted to take advertising. when they are told and to take it, the others shouldn't. he was very defeated at the irs was shut down. he's a two-person operation, didn't have the money to have money to the whole operation chilling with irs reporting so we stopped. this is not an example of current law fostering innovation a recommendation, part 3. first, just to review what we said, obviously we said the media landscape is very vibrant, but a couple areas of concern. some of the rules intended to advance the public interest arafat is. i would add another which is that technology has evolved in a
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way that increases potential potency as transparent as a policy tool. we are going to talk about the end of that. another point which is i actually do not think the government is the main player in this drama. i think what we do is very important. there were obstacles the government should remove. i think fairways policy can encourage innovation. the resources it has been well spent, which ought to be well spent. i still don't think that the government is the main determinant of what is going to happen. if so, let's get it right and must make it easier for i think in some cases to really inspire people trying to solve this problem. point number one is that emphasize online disclosure as a pillar of fcc media policy. this is a number of different implications. over time, frankly, the paper file should be a pang of the past. it's called for public inspection file. it is time we made it for the
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public to inspect it an easier way. putting it on the internet is a way that can actually take this policy that was debated in the first place and give it life and effectiveness it is really not have it. at the same time, i think it is also time to eliminate some rules that are either buried in some, potentially burdensome for discouraging the same behavior whereafter. so, we are recommending that the fcc consider terminating the localism proceeding, repealing the amendment said the fairness that train, maybe a party taking care of that one. they should cross that one off. and replacing the enhanced disclosure rule. enhanced disclosure rule is something the commission passed a few years ago with a good principle behind it, which is that, you know, instead of having detailed program rolls, let's have serious disclosure.
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but it was overly burdensome in and of itself and it require to much and also wasn't done in a way that was -- really took advantage of the internet has things have really changed. we are at a point now where we can make this much more effective. so we are suggesting replacing the enhanced disclosure rule for something else, which is a streamlined web based form online, which broadcasters would sell out to have a shorter list, but important list of important information. most important is the amount of programming you are doing about your community. i think it also should include things like new sharing arrangements, partnership arrangements, how the multicast channels are being used, website accessibility for people with disabilities, whether their website is accessible. and i think this is really a great opportunity to do
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something about to pay for play arrangements i type about before. these types of arrangements are not illegal. they are already prior to be disclosed. what we are suggesting is any time a sponsorship i.t. rule is required to be disclosed on the air, it should also be disclosed on the internet, which will create a permanent record searching by anyone in the community, citizens, watchdogs, competitors will be able to see what stations in a community or country are doing this. we also believe that the fcc should agree to the proposal to religious broadcasters and other noncommercial broadcasters that do not receive funding from cpb be allowed to air or use up to 1% of their time for raising money for charity. and they should disclose that,
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too. they should disclose it so people can see it's being used well, but this seems like a sensible thing. the same sort of disclosure operators, there should be online. i think it is also time to look at the program and the least access program in greater depth to see whether they are really for filling needs they were sent out to congress. the next categories make it easier for citizens to monitor government by putting more proceedings, documents and data online. we talked about importance of disclosure and transparency at the fcc. so, this goes way beyond the fcc. there is a real exciting movement for governments in general to put data online. this is fantastic and tremendously important. it makes it easier for citizens to get useful information, makes it possible for citizens to hold institutions accountable and it lowers the cost of journalism. when you have more data online, things that would've taken a lot
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of time can be done quickly by reporters. so it makes sense in many, many different ways. it should be done in different formats to make it easier for analyzing. it actually has a essential creating jobs. when you put the information out, they look at and say i can create. i will package this data with this data and sell it to people to create an even better thing. this is happening now and will continue to happen the more we put this information out. on a more old media idea is to go back to the states now. every state should have a statement. every state should have a state-based system so people can watch the legislative session of the state legislature watch the hearings, watched debates and be more informed about their communities. there are a lot of different ways of doing this. once some states that public tv station where is the stamp. in some cases it is the cable
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operators. in wednesday, only wednesday, satellite operators are operating in general i hope that the commercial operators would approach this in the way they approach c-span. they view that is one of their civic achievements. i think it would be an equally signal achievement they did the same thing on the state level. we recommend congress look at whether it are incentives that could be given to the operators. for instance, we threw out as an idea perhaps they should get a regulatory relief on their release access requirement if they support a state c-span. or if they support a local cable news chapter. the third set of recommendations is i think the really interesting one. consider direct an existing government advertisers towards local media. the federal government, last time this discounted spent
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$1 billion on advertising for things that whate'er recruiting, public health announcements, safety, things like that. test of the national media, entertainment media for the most part and cared towards important functions. so we thought, is it possibly could be done in a cost to play that would achieve the goals of these marketing campaigns, but has a target to local news media because of the serious problems we have in the american communities of oakland is media. and it turns out there was a fascinating proposal sent to us by the local broadcasters are basically said yeah, you know, 10 years ago this understandable someone who wanted to do a national ad was more efficient and affect it. but now there are ways were to elegy because businesses has developed you can do a national ad buy to local tv here turns out the newspaper industry is
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done the same thing. you want to buy an added 100 newspapers across the country coming back to call newspapers. you can go to one place. same thing on the internet. so we are recommending that the government look at the possibility of targeting the ad money toward local media. it has to be done in a way that doesn't undermine effectiveness of the campaign. this can't become primarily and media helper program. it's got to be a program geared toward achieving goals that the agency. but if it can be done in a way that helps local media, that would be fantastic. it has to be done in a way that has a rocksolid local law because you do not want to go back to the 1800 when andrew jackson was doling out advertising contracts to his favorite newspapers. this can be done because their ad networks that are very blind and they think it's very solvable and something we should turn to.
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nonprofit. i'm not going to go through these recommendations come up with quite a few in the report that basically says the private sector is important to me should really make sure we are not importing the innovation and the nonprofit site here. do you i think folks that are more expert in tax matters than we are should take a good hard look at this and look out tax rules can be clarified to make it more likely to nonprofit can get traction. i believe foundations should put more money to this area. philanthropists, individual donor should put more money we should not look at it as something you do with status and being for the cause you care about. will make because you care about more effective. cpb, we recommend they be given more flexibility so they can target more locally and be more innovative than fund more innovation. the community media centers can continue with innovation they are doing and we really would
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hope that patrick centers that really are doing this, that are really trying to adapt to the new world and come up with really powerful ways of serving communities should not be cut off by state governments or city governments. they are too important. low-power access, same thing. i can access. i guess i don't need to go into great detail about the importance of universal broadband, but i want to underline it again because it is something that really is almost a prerequisite for everything i screwtop about. finally, as we go through this transition, we really need to make sure that the historically underserved communities that are sometimes left out of media evolution are not. and you know, there are a number of different approaches to this. we suggest in the report one of them, for instance is that congress should consider reinstating the tax certificate program that was pretty affect
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the flow is therefore encouraging ownership of small businesses, including minorities and women. so to summarize, it's a really important moment of opportunity. i'm the one hand, you have this very, very vibrant media landscape. at the same time you have serious gaps and we believe that if we take the right steps and avoid taking the wrong steps in a way that can preserve all of these strengths, reserve the innovation, was the same time addressing these problems we've talked about, we really will end up with the best media system we've ever had. thank you very much. >> steve, thank you very, very much for all the work that went into that, for the thorough
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report. i'll have a couple of comments. first let me ask my colleague. >> well, a lot to talk about. i promise i will be relatively brief. thank you, first of all, steve, for your energetic presentation of the report and for all the hard work you put into it and i'll have more to say about that later. obviously we have some very serious problems here in the issue is, what are we going to do about them? let's begin with a basic truth. the future of our country's media is an issue that goes to the heart of our democracy. a well-informed public. a well-informed public. a well-informed public. a well-informed public agreement. to make the compact work, it is imperative the sec play a vital role in helping to ensure that all americans have access to diverse and competing news and information that provide the
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greatest for democracy is churning mill. for most of the past 30 years, the commission has turned a blind and sometimes hostile i towards this responsibility. application is no longer an option. it will come as a surprise to few here this morning but this just-released staff report and company recommendations are not entirely doubled response for which i hope and dare to dream. instead, the overarching pollution of the staff report seems to be america's media landscape is mostly vibrant and there is no overall crisis of news or information. but it is a crisis when is the report says, more than one third of our commercial broadcasters offer notice what the weather to their communities of license. america's news and information resources keep shrinking and
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hundreds of stories that confirm our citizens go untold on a date undiscovered, were his favorite day when hundreds of new strains and tens of thousands of reporters are walking the street in search of a job rather than walking their feeds in search of a story. i think it goes beyond local news. i cannot say that i share the conclusion that national and international news is in good shape. the shrinking resources put into investigative reporting that you talk about the diminishment of investment and nationally in washington and overseas faith and tell a different story, which leads to off into the substitution of entertainment for the hard news that people really need. where is the urgency?
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the real urgency for the commission to weigh in and really grapple with the shortfalls that you document in this report. enlightened policy that promotes the public interest is basically glossed over as having been tried and failed. let's look for example at the claim that policies like broadcast relicensing failed and therefore need to be replaced with something new or perhaps pay nothing. i agree that our current licensing process has failed and is primarily because beginning 30 years ago the commission white from its books most of the public interest guidelines for consumers and advocates had won after long, tough struggles of media reform. licensing approach became one of sending us a postcard every eight years in the renewal is a slamdunk certainty. no questions asked.
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as you point out, the sec has not taken the license away from public interest nonperformance for the 10 years i've been here for the 10 years before that. where does the commission issued warnings or impose a probationary period giving a poor performing licensee a chance to clean up its act. the point here is not to take license as a way, but she is the public interest processes available to us to in court greater emphasis on local news and information. it can be done. when the majority of meaningful rules will dismantle it in the early 1990s, we were told there was little impact on viewers. excuse me, that turnout demonstrably not to be the case. before releasing any more rules, we should pause to recognize the yacht training of tv no longer an toaster is one chairman in the fcc put it back in the early 1980s. when the actions of government weekend to force the state, there's less of a check on
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government health. the report and presentation course the assignment on the next 10 or 15 years in this country will be an area for state and local political corruption. that is frightening. vigilant journalism can discourage that from happening. only if we take action now. yes, the fcc has a role to play. one of the three pillars underlying interest is globalism. localism is about making sure the citizens and local communities are supplied with in-depth programming about public and civic affairs that they have available, programming to reflect the needs, interests and cultures of diverse people living there and that those views have some opportunity for expression on the airwaves. local means plus program homogenization. more local mosque in music and community news originated in the
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market for its broadcast, rather than being imported from faraway studios controlled by absentee owners. in the continuing era of media industry consolidation, we have no coverage of local music, local talent, local sports, local diversity communities, local political issues in election campaigns of odds making are more the exception of the rule. the staff report does recognize problems in local news and information than the lack of accountability you much to its credit this underscores points i've been making for years. instead of calling for stepped-up commission, direct commission action, but too often tinkers around the edges. for example, urging philanthropy is to find better ways to do their business, asking congress to change tax code and suggesting the government to act more advertising to local media.
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and rather stunningly, i thought the staff report recommended shutting down a penny and localism proceeding. i participated in dozens of hearings in hundreds of meetings on the stockade. i have traveled to hearings and town hall meetings across the country to learn directly from tens of thousands of citizens what they think about their local and national media. they listen to folks fire tonight in session that sometimes lasted as long as nine hours. we have had notices of inquiry notice of proposed rulemaking on this proceeding. we have done the analysis. we've made proposals and now it is time to act. i remarked after the localism npr and cannot for some of his proposals could and should be modified. no question about it before they became final rules. this could be quickly and easily accomplished and makes more sense to me than walking away from a huge and still relevant
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record. the staff report also delves briefly into media ownership and correctly alludes to some of the harmful effects of consolidation or less local news, few to reporters a diversity. and the recommendations, there is hedging about what they're consolidation we are living with today, although local independent stations brought up by make immediate interest has been good or bad. the report suggests some additional newspaper broadcast mergers could well be beneficial in some circumstances. the policy prescriptions here as elsewhere in the staff report to track the diagnosis. keep in mind the paucity of resources dedicated to accountability. i hope the commission that some coming quadrennial review will weigh much more seriously than it has in the past, to have caused by media consolidation has inflicted on america's news and information infrastructure.
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diversity is another pillar in the public interest. i'll put this simply. in spite of occasional instances of progress in recent years, media's overall grade in covering, reflect and comics waning and mirroring america's amazing cultural diversity is tried for. diversity of viewpoint, diversity ownership in doing what we see on tv and diversity in who runs the companies, all of these are worse than media than most other american industries. the staff report seems aware of a serious problem here. you alluded to it. what is lacking our recommendations for strong, implementable programs that begin to make a difference for generations of media and just as. as a starting point, i repeat my suggestion some month ago that weak tea at the face one of the recommendations of the diversity advisory committee at every meeting for the next year. the staff reports primary policy
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prescriptions as disclosure. but more and better information online with consumers and advocates can readily access and good things will happen. i am all for disclosure and i was happy more than two years ago when my colleagues and i voted for enhanced disclosure item which would provide significantly more program information than what is currently available. since then, the item seems to be stuck somewhere in the kind of limbo.take could relate to come the stranded somewhere between the fcc and the office of management and budget. why don't we resolve to get it on., to whatever fine tuning is needed and vote next month's agenda meeting on the revised order of for this notice of proposed rulemaking to finish the long pending job. let's also remember that disclosure is a means to an end, not an end in of. as disclosure brings to public life actions that require
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retries, where is the redress to be found? somewhat doubt whether it is to be found in a commission that has sworn off public-interest rules and guidelines. why would consumers by thereupon the internet looking at public fires if there is so little confidence their effort will be rewarded with remedial action. over the years, some hardy souls have gone through paper files to petition the commission to deny relicensing, all to no effect. what is the incentive to move that hapless process online? also on the disclosure fun, i continue to believe the sooner we can ensure fuller disclosure of political advertising sponsorship, the better off our democracy will be. voters have a right to know who's really behind all those glossy and sometimes wildly misleading ads we see on tv.
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concealing from voters than a gnat brought to us by the citizens for a more beautiful america is really sponsored by cabal of cable companies polluting the water we drink. it is not just nondisclosure. it is deception aimed at buying elections. we need to fix this in the fcc has been a good girl. i suggest the commission tia tonight and then the next two months in this list was made full disclosure of political advertising. the digital age, as you point out holes in the same promise for expanding the scope of our democratic discourse. the staff report recognizes this in the present commission has focused tremendous energy on both broadband deployment and adoption. let's recognize upfront that they needed time where paved with broad and breaks and stacked with good news and information is not going to happen on autopilot. right now the vast majority of the news we read on the internet
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is produced elsewhere in traditional media newsrooms. interesting new and information innovations have developed on the map, although it would take some exception to the new site and the low, low, single-digit as addresses really go. the more important part is what happened to the on the internet is the model for the mass or the momentum to sustain the resource hungry journalists and that informed electorate requires. an open internet is not the entire solution for robust 21st century journalism. it's a tougher problem from that. i for one don't believe we'll get their accents and public policy solutions. we have never had successful dissemination of news and
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information in this country without some encouraging public policy guidance. going back to the earliest days of the young republic on washington and madison and jefferson saw two of the newspapers were financially able to reach readers all across the fledgling young republic. they didn't see it is violent of the first amendment that they wrote. and the supreme court more recently has not seen as violent of the first amendment to strip is we are told by the preservation of a vibrant marketplace of ideas to sustain our democracy. the same purpose of expanding the information infrastructures, what gave rise to broadcast licensing much closer to our own. so i don't see any reason why we
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should forsake america's workable past and deny her own history this point. there's more to be said about the staff report and i will be talking about it in the days ahead. but rather than parsing the contents of a particular report, i intend to spend most of my time encouraging the commission to take up this charge of responsible public interest oversight and to do everything it can to encourage the news and information and diversity that americans have a right to expect from their media. at the staff report touts generated dialogue towards that end, it will have served a purpose. if we can learn from history traced in the staff report, much of it very good, we will be able to craft stronger public policy proposals. if the commission can move swiftly had on some of the good ideas offered and there are indeed good ideas offered, we
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can reap real benefits from it. i know very well that compiling the staff report was not an easy task. in fact, the undertaking was enormous and cognizant and appreciative of the work stephen and his team put in the report. and i hope steve and his colleagues, for whom i have tremendous respect will take the comments i've made today in the spirit in which they are intended so we can move beyond this report after we read and digested to an action plan making the fcc central to solving the challenges we are talking about. launching a rededicating ourselves as pristine enhanced disclosure and diversity and localism in political advertising and media ownership in reinvigorated public interest licensing will put us on the road we need to travel.
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i also want to assess the commission should talk directly to the american people about all of this. in full commission hearings in various parts of the country. i suggest to my mr. chairman, three and the months ahead to see how well citizens across the land think they are being served by her present news infrastructure and to elicit their ideas for the future. i'm unfortunate enough to have this listening for 10 years and they never come back from such conversations without knowing more than when i went out. let's hold these hearings, talk with citizens can't expeditiously enhance the record and take actions by the end of the year. there is real urgency here. i am cognizant of the fact that the fcc can't solve all of the problems with this report describes. but it can address and help resolve many of them.
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these issues mean a lot to me. i believe they mean a lot to her country. i have been outspoken about them and sometimes blunt. i know and i intend to keep speaking out about them in the months and if needed, the years ahead. this nation faces dark and threatening challenges to the leadership that brought us in the world successfully through so many dire threat in the century just past. now we confront fundamental new uncertainties about revival of our economy, where new jobs will come from. how we will prosper in a hypercompetitive global arena, how to support the kind of education our kids and grandkids will need to thrive, indeed to survive in this difficult time, how to open the doors of
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opportunity of every american, no matter who they are, where they live or particular circumstances of their individual lives. we've had a lot to get on top of that the country. and if we don't have the facts that we don't have the information and we don't have the news about what is going on in the neighborhood and the talent and the nation and the world around as, our future is going to be very vastly diminished. that's why so much rides on the future of what we are talking about today. and i'll say it again how these issues get decided will deeply affect our country's democracy and our country's future. i cannot and i will not leave these issues where they are. thank you. >> thank you, commissioner copps. commissioner mcdowell. >> thank you, mr. chairman. first of all, thank you. you and your entire team that
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looks like the cast to the credits for sosa b. demille to you should at the very beginning. before all of your absurd to unmask him a really significant amount of information and analysis about the current state of the media information marketplace. i look forward to reading your voluminous report in greater detail. i've been chewing on it since i got the draft a few days ago. i also look forward to thinking further about how the developments and trends to identify the new small role in affecting just one corner for broader media landscape. at the outset, i do want to applaud you for your guidance of the process that led to the report and for your own very thoughtful nuanced and responsive leadership style and enjoyed our meetings and discussions on this. next, for the sake of those of you may not be familiar with how the commission works. i've only been here five weeks
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and am still figuring this out. distress of the report is simply vast. which the generated by a hard-working group of agency staffers has no binding effect. in other words, the report does not establish new fcc rules. it does not repeal any old rules. it does not even formally propose adopting new rules were discarding old rules. rather, the report contains a set of recommendations, only some of which are directed to the commission that mankind hope she proposals for new rules to come our old rules to go. if and when that happens, forced the agency will launch proceedings that began as the lie requires, with notice and comment opportunities that afford interested parties an opportunity to weigh in with their own perspective facts and analyses before the fcc adopts any new or amended regulations.
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so now that i'm done with the legal disclaimer, no applause. look at some later. this one contains statements and a substance with which i agree and some with which i disagree. the responses i will share at this point are all preliminary because i have several hours of reading left to do. i would expect to read a person takes issue with reports characterization of media and information marketplace that is vibrant, competitive, innovative and rapidly devolving. the facts supporting those conclusions have been right in front of us for years and they should no longer be ignored when it comes to making reality-based public policy. i also shared the reports general optimism about the future and welcome recognition of the government's limited ability as both a practical and legal matter to affect neither the operation or output at tomorrow's successful media and information platforms.
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more importantly, the government should keep its heavy hand off of journalism. journalistic freedom, as steve pointed out, is the primary protection of the bill of rights. and full disclosure, both my parents were journalists. with respect to the reports of specific recommendations, will come as no surprise to fcc watchers that i agree with several suggestions given my own past statements on many media issues correct for example, through the enhanced disclosure form, calling it overly complex or just putting it mildly. i cast the only dissenting vote against creation of the four may may 2007 and anything we can do to hasten its demise would serve the public interest. they also agree with closing the localism proceeding without further action. pending proposals in the doctor for government mandated community advisory board from a
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24 hour manning of broadcast stations and detailed accounting of local music content are indeed overly bureaucratic, unworkable and unnecessarily burdensome to quote the report. there also impractical, unneeded and classic examples of regulatory overreach. those are my words. and of course, i endorse the reports call for a for nominating remnants of the so-called fairness.turn that still litter our rulebooks are the long-standing opposition to anything resembling the unconstitutional policy was no secret. accordingly, i call upon the commission to complete the emanation at the end of the year coming merely offering a recommendation today has no legal effect. in that spirit, commissioned by that time also should finish out the regulatory elimination proceedings discussed not only matcher magenta chassis june 6th letter to chairman upton of the commerce committee but in many 19 speeches while.
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i would also like to consider the elimination of the outdated newspaper broadcast day and in their upcoming quadrennial review over media ownership rules. my hypothesis is that the ban caused the unintended effect of reducing the number of voices, especially newspapers and scores of american communities. given that however, the demise of american newspapers have been written about for quite a long time. tombstones have been written for quite some time. this reminds me of a book that i keep in my office and i'll just read you a couple quotes from it. the first quote is the printing presses on the way to obsolescence. yet journalism marches on. it goes onto say that journalism migrates into new areas of communications. its practitioners who are on the
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move, the commerce and information flourishes and quickened its tempo. new skills developed in the major problem for newspaper journalists is to keep their readers are migrating, too. this could have been written today. i found this in my mother's library. she passed away in 2005, a few months before i was appointed to its defeating american news ether. very clever container with a fading. you have to ask yourself, when was this published? 2004? was a published in 1976, the year after the newspaper ownership fans are put into effect? was actually published 51 years ago, back in 1960. and my point is these issues have been around for a long time as the debate continues that journalism does mark john and continue to live. i have some reservations about other wreck nations in the report. for instance, while i appreciate calling for a new online
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quarterly disclosure record for broadcasters, stuffed rafters attempting to craft a more streamlined and useful obligation, continue to wonder about the need for mandate in the first place. after all, not exactly broadcasters or the business of trying to hide her on-air content from the public hear the government want to know what is being broadcast, it can turn on the tv or the radio out of the big brother implications of that also concern me. i'm also not convinced there is a new pricing policy justification for potentially increasing the satellite tv sign for noncommercial content from the current level of 4% of satellite operators capacity to some higher percentage. many reports recommendations, as steve is violated, not corrected at the sec at all but it had intended to start debate in action elsewhere, including among private-sector entrepreneurs, nonprofits as well as other sectors of government from the federal level to local lawmakers. passionate debate ignite easily
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in this arena and i sense that these are subjective in this regard authority been achieved. i will watch with interest to see which numbers catch fire beyond our out regulatory balance. and just to reiterate, please keep in mind the fcc actually has not done anything today. [laughter] what we have before us is a report with a few recommendations. it is up to the four of us to turn the more constructive recommendations into deregulatory action that better fits a competitive and dynamic marketplace. so let's get going with that. thanks again to steve and everyone on the report team, especially including alma mater, duke university. a shadow for giving us so much to think about. thank you, mr. chairman. >> steve altman and his team are to be commended for the amount of time and energy that went into publishing this report and the chairman is to be thanked
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for commissioning these findings. the issue covers here fall into many categories. some new, some timely comes some sad and yes, some scary. the findings and recommendations contained in these 465 pages that include said noss will hopefully begin conversations of new and innovative ideas for both improving and saving our existing media landscape and platforms. i am hopeful we all take advantage of an incredible opportunity to get a constructive dialogue going. when i served for 14 years as publisher and general manager of a small weekly newspaper based in charleston, south carolina, i went out of my way to highlight significant people, issues and positive topics of interest that quite frankly were being ignored by the larger and better financed media outlet. times are changed and there are very few people like the old
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mignon around anymore. medius about environment all around us. but for all of us on the president for the people i used to touch each week been better served. quality local stories and reporting our precious avenues of knowledge for residents of small towns and big cities and today, despite all of these outlet, they are at risk. this report explores the media landscape detail and i am hoping it will shine a strong and urgent light on the state of local media. it touches on causes of a potential remedy that issues of grave concern and all of us, not just the fcc need to consider them very seriously. we must not -- we must not stand idly by and watch the evaporation of our precious news outlet. we face not a broad crisis of the news or content, but something more specific, a shortage of local professional
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accountability reporting, language and the report states, this is likely to lead to more government with local corruption or schools, a less informed electorate and even lives lost. the loss of 13,400 newsroom positions in just four years as attention grabbing and should move us to ask, what does this mean when it comes to the in-depth coverage of issues than local concerns when it comes to industry, government and communities at large. others such as gradients state a c-span, targeting advertising spending to local news media and help a nonprofit news operation to succeed are positive steps towards improving local accountability of reporting. apart from local concerns, i am intrigued by many of the other findings in the report, from the
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coverage of regulatory agencies to services available to individuals with disabilities. one of the more intriguing aspects is the section regarding modern media policy and historically underserved communities. it is essential to introduce as many people as possible to the vast opportunities in modern technology provides and the requirement for tv stations to disclose whether websites are accessible to the visually and hearing in eric is something we should take very seriously. also, information about minority and female ownerships pose a further debate the issues surrounding existing this rarities and i intend to take a deeper dive on this in the months to come. additionally, attaining more accurate information about racial, ethnic and gender employment at broad stations as they massed and i look forward to a more robust dialogue on that as well.
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i am also pleased by the suggested focus on communications programs and historically black colleges and universities. the idea of a minority capital institute to help would-be entrepreneurs locate opportunities for financing is one idea that i look forward to discussing further. numerous recommendations were making more data available online for public consumption are in line with the fcc's goal of greater efficiency and transparency. one of these proposals is to television broadcasters by all and i might form containing essential data as opposed to the current requirement of reporting on 365 days of programming. this could and would reduce the burden on broadcast file paper reports, while providing more transparency are more important information for the public. i look forward to working with broadcasters on this issue as well. the more transparency there is an government, the more
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confident people can feel about what their government is doing for them. it is my hope that this report will also pave the ways to more discussions about what we can do to help making online filing easier simpler while still giving the public easy access to this important information. i am eager to listen and be part of this discussion that flows from the release of this report. it highlights very clearly that all of us have the capacity and the opportunity in our personal capacities to be influencers and change agent when it comes to the state of our media. i hope that the commission will continue to find ways to work with the private industry and local entities on many of the recommendations and concerns that the report highlights. i am confident that we can make meaningful strides towards improving our media landscape on the local level and filling the
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gaps routines that work so well in the past and the people are looking for in the present. i want to again thank you, steve and your team for your tillage over. there is a quote that i am not sure, but it struck me today as i was listening to the comment. journalism is the first rough draft of history. if we believe and embrace the quote, then the publishing of this report has the capacity to serve as an incredible conduit for enhanced community and civic engagement. and the presenting of multiple examples in which we can and will read more about, options and opportunities, all of these things highlight the diversity and dexterity of every single
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market and their ability to involve and best serves the communities, their people and all americans. thank you or image. >> thank you, commissioner cliburn. steve intime, thank you again for the achievement this report reflects. i want to thank each of my colleagues for their thoughtful comments. in particular, i want to recognize commissioners said terry for his long-standing commitment and passion in this area. any of the issues and recommendations highlighted in this report are directly related to topics on which commissioner copps has long been educating the public and his fellow commissioners. the amount ..
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and opportunities of today's landscape and tomorrow. i think it is. and different levels of optimism of news and information, entrepreneurs both new entrants and traditional using new media platforms can achieve for open and universally available internet and whether business
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models will emerge and strengthen and on this i am optimistic. cautiously but optimistic. these points and the fundamental fact the only thing certain about a future in this area is on going to change to focus on the steps including achieving universal broadband for all americans ensuring low entry barriers for news, information entrepreneurs, using public information online and it is easily available to consumers, citizens and reporters and enabling the business models that can sustain a vibrant and strong news information industry and the 21st century. these and fielder approaches outlined today are preferable in my opinion to ones that involved a heavier government and particularly in the area of speech and content. it more strongly reflect the law of the first amendment and i believe more likely to achieve the objectives than the past approaches which will certainly
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well-meaning have proven ineffective as the report shows and a number of respected commentators who have been involved in these issues for decades have concluded. despite the differences that exist, i believe we all share the same goals. a vibrant free press and an informed and enlightened citizenry pay central roles in our democracy in our economy. the report issued today is on the core principles. it's important for many reasons reporters but i would like to highlight three areas. first, the report makes clear that new technology is creating a new world of opportunity to keep the public informed in ways we couldn't even imagine just a few years ago. digital innovation has made the gathering and distribution of news and information faster less-expensive and more space. with the internet connected to have access to goods, personal
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printing press or even tv stations new communications technologies are connecting more people in more ways and more places and cite the u.s. and out. twitter, facebook, mobile phones and other new technologies are connecting and empowering citizens and journalists around the world helping open closed societies and paving the way for democracy and freedom. in the u.s., we see more and more news on the entrepreneur is pursuing their vision online and on the mobile of creativity and confidence. empowering individuals of tools to give us breakthroughs like hyper local news as we've discussed. in many cities to be confined news on your individual neighborhood or st. even in the heyday of newspaper this type of clock information coverage wasn't available. but the nation's history we've
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never had a greater opportunity to realize the founders' vision of a free society, bolstered by a free press and informed citizenry. the contribution of the report is its focus on the opportunities of new technology. had the second is its focus on the challenge. foremost is the disruptive impact the internet and economic pressures have had on local news gathering. as we have heard newspapers have cut back staff and something impossible ten years ago shut down the material number. local broadcast news continues to play an important role with some stations increasing the commitment to their community seizing the platform opportunity but many other tv stations have cut back or offered no news or limited local content. with a multitude and emerging gap in the local news coverage
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that has not yet been fully filled by other media, this matters because if citizens don't get local news and information, the health of the democracy suffers. professional journalists to provide a final check against corruption in both governments and business. the lescol the local reporting we have, the less likely we are to learn about government, schools that field children, hospitals that miss st. patients, factories that pollute local water to the accountability and tom esters and said he would rather have newspapers without government and a government without newspapers. the technology has changed, but the point endures to read the third contribution to the report is it is a thoughtful and practical initiative to help address the challenges that identify it. in crafting recommendations the reports start with the overriding and correct recognition of the first amendment circumscribes the role
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for government can play in improving local news. but also recognizes the only thing certain about the future in this area is on going to change and technology and markets. but steve walden and the team didn't throw up their hands and say there's nothing to be done, nor would it have been the right answer. while government is not the main player in the drama, there are areas where government can make a positive difference and steve developed a creative set of recommendations for the government, for the private sector and the nonprofit sector that can collectively have a big positive impact and make it possible for cedras duty to citizens into entrepreneurs to solve the problems to do so. the report's recommendations as we heard focus on several areas. on achieving universal broadband access for all americans, on ongoing vigilance to ensure low entry barriers to information for entrepreneurs and entrance including preserving the internet freedom and openness. on streamlining and removing
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obstacles the traditional news providers seeking to distribute the news and information on multiple platforms with strict new and innovative partnerships in a dillinger the development of business models that can sustain new information and the 21st century. on ensuring that the media policy works but historically underserved communities. on government transparency encouraging the development of ideas like states. on using public information from paper online in a way that is easily available for consumers become citizens and reporters there's more room for progress by agencies of all levels of government 70 to federal, state and local and much benefit that can be had with accelerated progress and moving information from paper to longline we have an example of that in the first item this morning this report identifies additional areas for
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progress for example there's data and information that the fcc asked broadcasters and others to disclose the information is being disclosed in paper form generally in filing cabinets at the stations themselves. in a broadband internet world that just doesn't make any sense. the report recommends accelerating the move from paper disclosures to the line would be eventual goal of making all public information available online some things are harder to and more costly on covers are forcibly taking into account the goal should be clear and correct. in the internet age we have to be moving in this direction. the general call to move from pittard is closer to digital it makes imports a recommendation of what exactly we ask broadcasters to disclose. but to suggest we tasted could change course and rather than creating programming course for broadcasters rather than
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implementing the overly burdensome we create a streamlined web based system will more effectively and efficiently provided to the communities more information for example the sensations are allowing advertisers to dictate news coverage in the arrangements the public should be able to find out about that and be able to find out about on line. they're doing far more coverage of the community and others the public should know that too. the report calls this a shift of emphasis to it is for the shift because i think it not only is more respectful of the first amendment but also because would be more effective than what the agency has been trying for the past decade. the technology of the internet makes it possible for the disclosure based public policy approach is to be far more effective than ever before let's use them. another streamlining recommendation involves the will of religious broadcasters to play helping charities and communities around the world including times of crisis proposing increased flexibility for charitable fund-raising.
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the report also states we should be vigilant about relieving barriers to innovation and online on to the north and news gathering information sharing the barrier costs ensuring more public information is available on line not only help citizens directly and also reduces the cost of reporting and journalism akaka research reports and previews dewitt tichenor reporter weeks a month to be done in a daze or faster. another entrepreneur should the news and inflation areas of america's broadband to plummet and adoption gaps the access to information gets back to the early years of the public. 1930 to newspapers accounted for more than 95% of the week to read by the postal service and es commissioner copps pointed out receive a discount for postage. the primary news delivery mechanisms in the past is bigger radio television were all universal. the emerging news delivery mechanisms of the future broadband of course should be too.
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doing so what have multiple benefits. bringing the vast information that's all the information that's on the internet to all people and another benefit is the potential for improving the business model for all in japan or some. -- on knorr. adoption and the united states from where we are today is a 50% increase in the on-line audience. the larger the online market, the greater the scale, the more likely a key online business can succeed. the public information online would help promote a broadband adoption, more broadband subscribers and larger broadband base for advertising. even other measures to increase broadband adoption would help improve our online business models for news and information on to the doors, stirring new innovation and increasing broadband demand this is a virtuous cycle that will help
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the businesses in the u.s. and help all others participate in both of a democracy and our economy. steve walden and his team have produced an incredibly thorough and thoughtful report. one that is done a huge service by a deepening our understanding of how technology has affected the information needs of communities that provides a road map for a wide variety of players including the fcc to understand the media information landscape that can take sensible actions to fill important gaps. this issue is essential for the health of democracy and i look forward to working with my colleagues to act on its recommendations. with that, i think to begin on
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