FCC Releases Five Research Studies on Media Ownership and Adopts Procedures for Public Access to Underlying Data Sets
Federal Communications Commission
News Media Information 202 / 418-0500445 12th St., S.W.
Washington, D.C. 20554
Released: June 15, 2011
FCC RELEASES FIVE RESEARCH STUDIES ON MEDIA OWNERSHIP AND ADOPTS
PROCEDURES FOR PUBLIC ACCESS TO UNDERLYING DATA SETS
MB Docket No. 09-182The Federal Communications Commission announces the release of five research studies on
media ownership.1 The five studies, which are listed below, are intended to inform the Commission's
quadrennial review of its media ownership rules pursuant to rulemaking docket MB Docket No. 09-182.2
In addition, the Media Bureau today is releasing a Protective Order, which establishes procedures for
public review of the proprietary portions of data sets created by the authors of the studies.3 The
Commission will seek formal comment on all eleven studies within the context of the Notice of Proposed
Rulemaking in this proceeding and requests that all comments on the studies be submitted to the
Commission for consideration at that time. We are releasing the studies earlier, in order to provide parties
additional time to review the results and the underlying data.
The five studies released today were conducted by outside researchers and examine a range of
issues that impact diversity, competition, and localism, three important policy goals of the media
ownership rules. Pursuant to this Public Notice, the Commission is making available on the
Commission's website at https://www.fcc.gov/ownership the five studies, peer reviews, and the authors'
responses (if any) to the peer reviews. The Commission will incorporate the studies in the record of this
A number of the authors of the media ownership studies created data sets using proprietary
information licensed to the author or the Commission. Beginning today, the data sets, as well as related
materials necessary to replicate the studies' analyses, including market data provided to the authors of the
1 The Commission commissioned nine economic studies to evaluate the current marketplace and the state of the
media industry. See Media Bureau Announces the Release of Requests for Quotation for Media Ownership Studies
and Seeks Suggestions for Additional Studies in Media Ownership Proceeding, MB Docket No. 09-182, Public
Notice, 25 FCC Rcd 7514 (MB 2010). In addition, the Commission conducted two in-house studies. The six
remaining economic studies will be released in the near term, pending completion of peer reviews and authors'
responses, if any, to those reviews.
2 2010 Quadrennial Regulatory Review Review of the Commission's Broadcast Ownership Rules and Other Rules
Adopted Pursuant to Section 202 of the Telecommunications Act of 1996, MB Docket No. 09-182, Notice of Inquiry,
25 FCC Rcd 6086 (2010).
3 2010 Quadrennial Regulatory Review Review of the Commission's Broadcast Ownership Rules and Other Rules
Adopted Pursuant to Section 202 of the Telecommunications Act of 1996, MB Docket No. 09-182, Protective Order,
DA 11-1056 (MB, rel. June 15, 2011) ("Protective Order").
studies as "Government Furnished Information," will be made available for review and inspection by
interested parties consistent with procedures contained in the Protective Order. Prior to reviewing the
proprietary data sets, parties are required to sign and submit the Declaration, which was released as part
of the Protective Order. Parties also may be able to obtain licenses from licensors of the underlying
proprietary data to evaluate the results of the studies and/or to develop other studies that will contribute to
the record in this proceeding.
For many of the studies, the data sets that the Commission will make available are only readable
by, and require the user to be familiar with, specific statistical software programs (namely, Gauss, R, and
Stata). The Commission has a limited number of on-site computing resources available for use by
members of the public. Therefore we recommend that interested parties call in advance to schedule use of
the Commission's facilities. Persons with a scheduled appointment will be given priority over walk-in
The following is a listing of the five media ownership studies released today, and their respective
Media Ownership Study 3, How the Ownership Structure of Media Markets affects Civic
Engagement and Political Knowledge, 2006-2008, by Lynn Vavreck, Simon Jackman, and
Jeffrey B. Lewis
Media Ownership Study 5, Station Ownership and the Provision and Consumption of Radio
News, by Joel Waldfogel
Media Ownership Study 6, Less of the Same: The Lack of Local News on the Internet, by
Media Ownership Study 7, Radio Station Ownership Structure and the Provision of Programming
to Minority Audiences: Evidence from 2005-2009, by Joel Waldfogel
Media Ownership Study 9, A Theoretical Analysis of the Impact of Local Market Structure on the
Range of Viewpoints Supplied, by Isabelle Brocas, Juan D. Carrillo, and Simon Wilkie
For further information, contact Tracy Waldon, Media Bureau, at (202) 418-0957. Press inquiries
should be directed to Janice Wise, Media Bureau, at (202) 418-8165.
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