For Immediate Release
Timothy Karr, 201-533-8838
FCC Improves Media Ownership Data Collection
WASHINGTON - The Federal Communications Commission announced sweeping changes to
the way it collects data on female and minority broadcast ownership in
the United States. Free Press research had exposed that the FCC's last
data collection process in 2007 missed more than half of all the radio
stations owned by women and minorities and more than two-thirds of the
Free Press' studies -- Out of the Picture and Off the Dial
-- filled in the FCC's gaps with conclusive evidence of the alarming
state of media diversity. While women make up 51 percent of the entire
U.S. population, they own less than 6 percent of all full-power radio
and TV stations. People of color make up 33 percent of the U.S.
population, yet own just 7 percent of the broadcast stations.
Joseph Torres, government relations manager of Free Press, issued the following statement:
"We commend Acting Chairman Copps and the FCC for making these
important improvements to the agency's media ownership data-gathering
practices. The FCC has ignored the disgraceful lack of media diversity
for too long. For years, the FCC has failed to accurately count the
number of minority and female broadcast owners or give any
consideration to the impact of broader media ownership policies.
"Better ownership data is the foundation of better broadcast policy.
An independent, honest and thorough data collection process is a
critical first step toward realizing the goal of a vibrant and
inclusive media landscape."
Free Press is a national, nonpartisan organization working to reform the media. Through education, organizing and advocacy, we promote diverse and independent media ownership, strong public media, and universal access to communications. Learn more at www.freepress.net