I’m delving into the issue of foreign broadcast ownership for the first time with a series of post. I admit that I have reservations on the surface and that my initial feelings may change the more I dig into the notice of proposed rulemaking, section 310(b)(4), and the comments that have been filed.
Here is where I stand right now. While current law absolutely prohibits a foreign government from owning a broadcast license, the law allows a foreign government to own a direct or indirect interest ina U.S. based company that acts as the parent of the license holder or licensee.
Question is, does this indirectness of the relationship change anything? We don’t support government control of capital or private corporations, so why should we allow foreign government control, no matter how indirect?