FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler is proposing that the agency retain most of the restrictions on common ownership of TV stations, radio outlets and newspapers in the same market. Wheeler circulated a proposal to commissioners on Monday that make only modest modifications to ownership restrictions. Under one proposal, an existing ban on ownership of a broadcast station and newspaper in the same market would remain in place, but would be subject to exceptions "for failed or failing entities," according to the FCC. The current rules already allow for waivers. "Our analysis indicates that the ownership restrictions remain necessary in the public interest, though the realities of the media marketplace require some targeted modifications of a number of the rules," the FCC said in a fact sheet outlining the changes. The FCC's current TV cross-ownership rule allows for the common ownership of a station in the same market, but only if just one of the stations are among the top four stations in that city, and that at least eight independently owned stations remained after the merger.
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