Archive | January, 2005

On Today’s Mediageek Radioshow: Former FOX TV Reporters Challenge KTVT’s License

On today’s mediageek radioshow I talk to investigative reporters Jane Akre and Steve Wilson. They were fired from FOX TV 13 in Tampa, FL for blowing the whistle on the station, which tried to bury and change facts on a story on bovine growth hormone (BGH) after being contacted by Monsanto.

Akre and Wilson are challening the station’s license with the FCC, which is up for renewal. They say the station aired known lies about BGH, and therefore failed to act in the public interest.

Drew and I will also discuss the latest news from the FCC about the departure of Media Bureau Chief Ken Ferree and the Commission’s decision not to challenge the Third Circuit Court decision striking down its revised media ownership rules.

Akre and Wilson have provided some information about their case, including how to file comments with the FCC, which you can read after the jump.

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Growing a Monste Monopolyr: SBC in Talks To Buy AT&T

SBC is the Clear Channel of telecomm. Starting out as one of the regional bells after the AT&T breakup, SBC is now one of the predominant telecomm companies in the US, especially after swallowing up Ameritech a few years ago.

And SBC is not just Clear Channelish in size, but in tactics, too. Back when it took over Ameritech, the company slashed customer service resources and ran roughshod on employees. When the Illinois utility regulators tried to crack down, the company called a halt to DSL rollout in Chicago. SBC plays hardball.

So, it can’t be seen as a good thing for the public that SBC is considering buying AT&T. Granted, there’s not much of old Ma Bell left these days, most recently having sold off its wireless business to Cingular. However, AT&T still has big resources in longhaul data networks and internet that SBC doesn’t.

An SBC/AT&T combo could create a monster with power over the ‘net and the last mile. Gee, that sound a lot like the old AT&T which controlled long distance in addition to local telephone companies. And we used to call that a monopoly.

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