Fighting Media Consolidation

Who owns the media has a huge impact on the stories that get covered in our communities.

Today absentee corporations own more and more of our media. Focused only on the bottom line, they are cutting journalists, gutting newsrooms and replacing meaningful debate with celebrity gossip and junk news. And many of these corporations are dodging the Federal Communications Commission’s ownership rules to snap up more outlets and create media monopolies in markets throughout the country.

The more independent outlets a community has, the more different viewpoints will be presented on the air. But what happens when there’s no one left to compete? When one company owns everything in your town, it can cut staff and not worry about getting scooped by a competitor. The fewer reporters there are on the streets, the less journalism there is on the news. The fewer DJs there are at your local radio station, the more automated computers and pre-programmed playlists take over.

The FCC is supposed to preserve a competitive media landscape and ensure that broadcasters are good stewards of the public airwaves. The agency sets limits on how much of your local media one company can own. These limits are supposed to encourage stations to compete with one another to provide quality journalism. But powerful media companies have the FCC's ear, and over the years it has become easier for these companies to snatch up more of our local airwaves.

Our ownership chart reveals exactly who owns what. It’s time to change what’s wrong with this picture. We need the FCC to serve communities, not corporations.

Blog Posts

More »

Actions

More »

Press Releases

  • Public Interest Groups to Speak Out in California Against Massive Cable Merger

    January 26, 2016
    LOS ANGELES — A coalition of media justice, Internet rights and public interest groups will testify Tuesday before the California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) in opposition to Charter Communications’ proposed $67 billion takeover of Time Warner Cable and Bright House Networks.
  • Free Press: New Owners of Las Vegas Paper Must Step Forward

    December 14, 2015
    WASHINGTON — The Las Vegas Review-Journal recently announced that a newly formed Delaware-based company had paid $140 million to purchase the daily newspaper and its affiliated publications. The financial backers behind the new company, News + Media Capital Group LLC, have refused to disclose the new owners’ identities to the public or even newsroom staffers.
  • ADVISORY: Free Press to Convene News Voices: New Jersey Event in New Brunswick

    November 4, 2015
    NEW BRUNSWICK — News Voices: New Jersey is bringing together community members, journalists, media makers, activists and others in New Brunswick on Nov. 11. The three-hour forum is an opportunity to brainstorm about the future of local journalism and its role in our communities.
More »

Resources

More »

News from Around the Web

  • Nevada Newspaper Staff Tweet in Protest of Ownership Mystery

    CNN
    December 15, 2015

    The Las Vegas Review-Journal was purchased for $140 million last week. The firm that bought it, News + Media Capital Group LLC, apparently consists of multiple investors, some of whom are from Las Vegas. But none of the new owners have been identified. Staffers at the daily paper are disturbed by the secrecy.

  • Here's Your Chance to Tell Local Media What You Think

    My Central Jersey
    November 12, 2015

    A free event Wednesday night at a Rutgers campus will give the public an opportunity to meet members of the media and learn how reporters can better cover their neighborhoods.

  • Charter Pushes FCC to Clear Merger With Time Warner Cable

    MediaPost
    November 5, 2015

    Advocacy groups recently warned that Charter's proposed $67 billion merger with Time Warner Cable and Bright House Networks could leave the new company in a position to stifle competition from online video companies.

Learn More

  • Covert Consolidation

    When you turn on the nightly news, you expect to find competing viewpoints and different perspectives from one station to the next. But in communities across the country, stations that were once fierce competitors have cut staff and merged their newsrooms, in many cases airing the same content on multiple stations in the same market. You can try to change the channel, but all you'll see is the exact same newscast.

  • Rupert Murdoch Scandal

    There are many reasons the scandal engulfing Rupert Murdoch’s News Corp. has riveted public attention around the world. It's a story that features all of the classic elements: crimes, betrayal, abuse of power and even a cover-up.

  • Money, Media and Elections

    The Supreme Court’s Citizens United decision launched a new era of big-money politics. The wealthiest 1 percent now has even more power to pick and choose our nation’s leaders. And they’re spending the bulk of this money on televised political ads designed to mislead voters. (Click here to see Free Press' infographic depicting this dysfunctional dynamic.)

People + Policy

= Positive Change for the Public Good

people + policy = Positive Change for the Public Good