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Re: [dvd-discuss] ClearChannel Plays It Safe
- To: dvd-discuss(at)cyber.law.harvard.edu
- Subject: Re: [dvd-discuss] ClearChannel Plays It Safe
- From: "Harold Eaton" <haceaton(at)hotmail.com>
- Date: Sun, 23 Sep 2001 22:36:30 -0400
- Reply-To: dvd-discuss(at)cyber.law.harvard.edu
- Sender: owner-dvd-discuss(at)cyber.law.harvard.edu
Bryan Taylor <firstname.lastname@example.org> wrote:
>The full extent of the public service requirement I've been able to find is
>"Fairness Doctrine" which says that news coverage has to present opposing
>viewpoints and the requirement to play political ads. The Supreme Court
>decision I cited before makes it clear that this public service relies on,
>rather than opposes, the exercising editiorial discretion.
From the communications act of 1934:
§ 303. Powers and duties of Commission
Except as otherwise provided in this chapter, the Commission from time to
time, as public convenience, interest, or necessity requires, shall ...
(g) Study new uses for radio, provide for experimental uses of frequencies,
and generally encourage the larger and more effective use of radio IN THE
I argue that this has a bit broader meaning than you do. Sort of
like "fair use" has a broad meaning; Since you enjoy the narrow
requirements of public interest, I wonder why you don't equally
like the new shruken "fair use" that congress has given us for
> > Perhaps you would have no problem with granting
> > a few elite corporations free rights to all water flowing through
> > major rivers in the US with only the public service requirement that
> > they "use" the resource.
>That's a bit absurd, and hasn't happened and isn't likely to happen.
>Actually, water shows precisely the kind of system that I am advocating.
>and mineral rights generally are property. There is no public service
>requirement for water you remove from a private well. Lots of private
>individuals own mineral rights they got under the homestead laws. Once
>government plays its role to define the scope of that property, water is
>(mostly) handled by the free market, and it works pretty well.
Water rights like my example could never be granted since water can mean
life or death. Basically the reason that water rights aren't always
conveyed with the land is precisely because everyone (except perhaps you)
can easily see that there is a PUBLIC INTEREST in equitable distribution of
water. But since you lack the imagination to see how a damn can be used to
re-route a river so that no significant water flows within 100 miles of you,
and how that would be unreasonable, let me just attempt one more pitiful
with water: Laws prohibiting reception of RF energy in your own home
are analogous to water rights being granted in such a way that
for you to collect rain from your roof (or even open your mouth to
the sky) would be illegally usurping someone else's
ownership rights in that water, however it got there. Would you be ok with
>The scenario you describe proves my point. Any system besides first come
>serve embeds the government with the power to "grant" a monopoly. I've said
>at least four times -- the problem is that the FCC is discriminating. A
>that embeds government with control over the market will fail inevitably.
>response that works is the free market, not greater government control.
Strange that there used to be limitations on foreign ownership of
radio and television licenses, your modern view is taking hold now.
Imagine if the Taliban owned 97% of all radio and television stations
in this country. No reason not to want that huh! Free Markets can
do no wrong, after all.
>I agree completely. Companies are neither absolutely good nor absolutely
>They take on the ethics of their decision makers.
Indeed. But remember that power corrupts and absolute power
corrupts absolutely. That says something about the decision makers of very
> > So you believe that if the FCC revokes a radio statio's license for
> > repeated indecency fractions that the station would be able to sue
> > for damages under a "takings" premise even though they paid nothing
> > for the rights??
>Yes, just as people who own homesteaded farmland would be entitled to
>compensation even though they paid nothing. I recognize that here, I'm
>advocating a "should be" rather than an "as is". I think the "seven dirty
>words" regulations and the Supreme Court decision upholding them are
>wrong. Every time I hear a song with the profanity edited out so it can be
>played on the radio I curse the FCC. If you want to talk about censorship.
From the communications act of 1934:
§ 301. License for radio communication or transmission of energy
It is the purpose of this chapter, among other things, to maintain the
control of the United States over all the channels of radio transmission;
and to provide for the use of such channels, BUT NOT
THE OWNERSHIP THEREOF, by persons for limited periods of time, under
licenses granted by Federal authority, and no such license shall be
construed to create any right, beyond the terms, conditions, and periods of
So there you go, a rather more limited right than a propery right.
Come to think of it, it's a bit like Copyrights - there origins were
theoretically designed to balance interests between those with the monopoly
and those of the public, but today it's not so well
balanced in either case.
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