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Luv2Roam
03-11-2003, 09:13 PM
Disney's ABC fights network program limits
Reuters, 03.11.03, 4:43 PM ET

WASHINGTON, March 11 (Reuters) - Walt Disney Co. (nyse: DIS - news - people), owner of the ABC television network, said on Tuesday it has begun lobbying federal regulators against efforts to resurrect limits on how much of its own programming it can air.

Some independent television producers and entertainment writers have pushed the Federal Communications Commission to adopt new restrictions on the big four networks in the agency's broader review of media ownership limits.

"There's never been greater diversity of content and quality of content ever in the history of the media industry," Alex Wallau, president of the ABC Television Network, told reporters in between meetings with FCC commissioners.

He said there was no legal justification for reinstituting programming restrictions that had been repealed over the last decade. ABC officials said about 42 percent of its television line-up was supplied by outside entities and some of the other 58 percent was supplied by partners.

The FCC is considering whether to change or eliminate media ownership limits, including whether two of the four networks can merge, if a network can reach more than 35 percent of the national television audience and whether a company can own a newspaper and a television or radio station in the same market.

An FCC spokeswoman declined to comment on whether programming limits would be a part of the review. FCC Chairman Michael Powell has said he hopes to vote on new media ownership regulations in late May or early June.

A coalition of writers and independent producers urged the FCC to adopt a rule that would require networks to broadcast four to five hours of programming from independent sources each week.

"The commission must address the troublesome reality that in the past decade, independent sources of diverse programming have been dramatically reduced as network deregulation prompted a tidal wave of vertical and horizontal mergers," the Coalition for Program Diversity said in January comments to the FCC.

A lawyer for the group was not immediately available for comment.

The Disney lobbyists said they were not overly concerned that the commission will adopt new rules on programming ownership but wanted to counter independent producers who have filed comments with the FCC complaining about the issue.

"We don't want to wake up one day that against all law and logic it somehow got some traction and be kicking ourselves that we didn't come in and rebut these" assertions, said Disney lobbyist Preston Padden.

Leslie Moonves, president of the CBS network which is owned by Viacom Inc. (nyse: VIAb - news - people) is also expected to lobby the FCC commissioners later this week on media ownership issues.

Copyright 2003, Reuters News Service

manning
03-11-2003, 11:44 PM
"There's never been greater diversity of content and quality of content ever in the history of the media industry," Alex Wallau, president of the ABC Television Network, told reporters in between meetings with FCC commissioners


Ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

lodgelady
03-12-2003, 09:03 AM
Ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! :teeth: :teeth: :wave:

Luv2Roam
03-12-2003, 12:38 PM
I am sure "You spoke and we listened." ;)