Time for Change

Broadcasters licensed by the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) must serve the “public interest.”

To that end, the Sacramento Media Group has focused on encouraging local television stations to provide more coverage of local elections and coverage of the actual issues voters face at the ballot box.

SMG has worked hard to encourage local stations to focus programming on issues, as well as information about the different candidates’ positions. In this effort we have met with television station managers in the Sacramento/Central Valley area, the nation’s 19th largest media market.

In 2004, SMG issued its first report detailing how local stations made over $12 million from campaign advertising, but did not enhance our democracy by living up to their public interest obligation by producing programming on local campaign issues. As campaign advertising profits have skyrocketed, we have continued to produce reports.

To educate our community further, SMG has organized community forums, sponsored film showings on media reform, and made presentations to local groups. SMG members also testified at the FCC hearings in 2006.

Click here for a PowerPoint presentation on SMG and critical issues in media reform.

Goals:

  • Oppose media concentration of ownership by fewer and fewer corporations.
  • Encourage higher standards in locally produced news and public affairs programming.
  • Preserve funding for community media, public education and government access to airwaves.
  • Monitor corporate media and regulatory bodies to ensure broadcasters meet public interest obligations.
  • Increase awareness of public rights-of-way to public airwaves and the  world wide web.
  • Advocate for  political balance in broadcast media  programing, including local talk radio.
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