As seen on TV: Portland's FCC broadcast license fight

MiprapIn December, Oregon's Money in Politics Research Action Project filed a complaint with the FCC - arguing that the broadcast licenses for Portland's local TV stations should all be pulled.

Why? Because they failed the federal requirement to air public interest programming, including news coverage of the 2004 elections - as previously reported here at BlueOregon. The TV stations have even gone so far as to suggest that viewers interested in politics should read blogs instead.

Given that their very existence is at stake, how many Portland TV stations found that to be a newsworthy event?

Zero. There's been no coverage at all.

Until now.

This Sunday, KRCW - whose license is being challenged - will air a half-hour interview with Janice Thompson, MIPRAP executive director, on Outlook Portland with Nick Fish.

The interview will air on Sunday morning at 6:30 a.m. KRCW is seen on broadcast channel 32 or Comcast cable channel 3.

  • Gil Johnson (unverified)

    Wow, the Nick Fish show. I'm sure thousands upon thousands of Oregonians set their clocks to get up on Sunday morning just to watch it.

  • Richard (unverified)

    "Why? Because they failed the federal requirement" No they didn't. That's just the claim. Who wants more political coverage anyway. It's sickening. Next you'll be advocating the people be forced to watch it. Or use our schools to force it upon our children.

    Naturally you'll call it vital to our democracy.

  • Nick Fish (unverified)

    A few comments.

    First to Gil's comment.

    Actually, @15,000 households watch the show on a good day. The time stinks--but I give KRCW credit for actually producing a public affairs show. KGW cancelled Viewpoint; OPB cancelled Seven Days; KATU cancelled Town Hall.

    The host still needs alot of work. But the guests have alot to say--from Kitz and Wyden on health care to Barney Frank on marriage equality and Oregon lawyers on Guantanimo and habeus corpus.

    Richard's comment appears to miss the point of the petition filed with the FCC to strip KRCW and all other local stations of their licenses. The airwaves are a "public" resource. The law requires stations to consider the "public interest". According to MIPRAP, a number of local stations ran -0- stories about the mayor's race in the fall of 2004.

    Most people get their information from television. Candidates spend millions of dollars on advertising in 2004. The failure to run a single story about an important local race in the fall of 2004 is remarkable.

    Nick Fish

  • frank carper (unverified)

    Personally, I DVR the show and watch it later -- and it's good stuff.

    I'd watch it live if it aired mid-morning - my usual routine on Sundays, with my coffee and the Sunday paper.

  • frank carper (unverified)

    "Why? Because they failed the federal requirement" No they didn't. That's just the claim.

    OK, prove the statement wrong. In what way did the stations meet the federal requirement?

  • (Show?)

    Thank you Mr. Fish for your comments. I know for myself that when I no longer had cable, I went into a news drought. Internet access, now that I have it again, greatly alleviates that, but I very much miss the reality of cable access. Other than the latest murder, scam, or celebrity death, the MSM is almost completely useless when really trying to get information on what is happening in our community. I find the local access news programs invaluable in this effort.

  • Steve (unverified)

    Here is a related pet issue of mine that nobody talks about:

    Why do the TV stations all break for commercials at nearly the exact same time? I think this is especially true during local news casts (which also have the exact same format: they all show weather at the same time, sports news at the same time). This seems anti-competitive to me.

  • Pavel Goberman (unverified)

    In December I also filed a Complaint with FCC against: 1) KATU TV Ch 2 2) OPBm TV Ch 10 3) Comcast and asked do not renew business licenses for violation Constitution of the USA.

    Pavel Goberman - Candidate for US Senator in 2008

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