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Do you believe the 'Fairness Doctrine' should be restored?

By DerekD7
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9 comments

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Considering on a different thread the question was asked about whether THEISTS (of any denomination) should be allowed on this site or outright banned, I feel that we are seeing first hand what the fairness doctrine would do.
The Government could look upon the internet as a "public medium" subject to the fairness doctrine and force equal representation on every site out there.
I don't know about you, but I value my right to free association and if someone wants to exist in an echo chamber that is their right.
It isn't the best of ways to be informed or educated but nobody has a right to force their views on anyone else.

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I’m ambivalent about this. The Commission said that info had to be “honest, equitable, and balanced.” When Trump was running, CNN and MSNBC had to have the Republican side of the coin for “balanced coverage.” Using someone like Jeffrey Lord who constantly said the most unsubstantiated things and would defend anything the orange one said, he and others like him seemed to cause a wearing down effect on folks and Trump won.

It’s like putting a climate scientist up against a chemist in a global climate debate. Ninety-seven percent of climate scientists agree on the validity of the science but by having a debate it appears that the debate is justifiable. When Bill Nye debated Ken Ham most scientists didn’t want the debate because it would appear Ham’s argument was legitimate.

What’s the answer? Maybe if people lie then call them out which seemed to happen after the election. Until the media can figure this shit out, it’s scary as hell.

gearl Level 7 Dec 29, 2017
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The original FCC act stated that the airwaves belonged to the public and broadcast stations had a responsibility to be fair to all points of view. In the Fairness Doctrine, stations couldn't favor one side or the other in any public policy or opinion. Stations had by law to give equal time to all sides of an issue.Then Ronald Reagan and the Republicans abolished the Fairness Doctrine and they knew what they were doing. I have no problem with right-wing points of view being expressed as long as equal time is provided for the liberal view as well.

nipoleon Level 5 Dec 29, 2017

I am more of a libertarian myself. My issue is with enforcement.
How do you determine equal time?
How do you determine how many points of view there are?
How do you determine if the alleged opposing view is being genuinely represented?
This is censorship and stifling of the 1st amendment pure and simple.

@wecoyote6969
Very simply, if enough people write to the FCC and complain their point of view isn't being given fair time, the station comes under review and is monitored. The FCC then judges if that station is biased in its opinions and coverage and can levy fines or other punishments. Freedom of speech isn't being suppressed, but the broadcast stations must be fair to all sides. It isn't stifling the 1st. amendment, it's enforcing the 1st. amendment.

The first amendment guarantees that you can SAY whatever you want without fear of government interference or action. IT does NOT guarantee you a right to be HEARD.

@wecoyote6969 If I have $100.00 to say the theatre is on fire and someone else has $1,000,000.00 to say the theater is not on fire, somebody's going to get burnt. MONEY buys attention. MONEY get's you heard. I don't mind so much people spreading lies but all lies should be equal. We need to do for the 1st. amendment what the NRA does for the 2nd. amendment.

2

No, who is listening to AM radio anymore?

Lets be honest here people who want it back just want to get conservative voices off the radio since with the sole exception of NPR all voices on the radio are rightwing or neutral. A real liberal respects a person's right to say with what they disagree with.

Even if you are willing to accept a violation of free speech to get what you want restoring the fairness doctrine won't achieve it. All you will do is make people switch to podcasts. The fairness doctrine accomplished nothing but make AM radio a dying medium.

You know its this flippant attitude to freedom of speech which leads to a breakdown in trust in our society.

1

No!
At the time that we had the "Fairness Doctrine" we had very few ways to get opposing viewpoints out to the masses. Particularly if it as someone not inside one of the available mediums. When it was written we had Radio, NETWORK TV, and print media.
Then Cable came along and other than the addition of CNN and Headline News, things didn't change much except that you MIGHT have access to another regions news broadcasts.

What we call the internet today was used among a few thousand researchers around the world at universities and laboratories. It was in it's infancy and nowhere near as pervasive as it is in our lives now.

Now we have so many ways that people can get their message out that the corporate media is scrambling for how to keep their companies afloat as ad revenue they could count on before is no longer a sure thing. The monopoly these companies had on dissemination of information has not only been shattered, it has been obliterated.

There is an old saying that essentially says "If you want to know why something is done, follow the money."
Who do you think will benefit most from the government stepping in to control speech (besides government itself of course)?
It will be the very media companies that USED to be able to control what info was distributed to the masses and make a buck while doing it.

0

To be honest I agree about having fairness doctrine restored bin live Medea and other ways because the people have the right to hear the truth about what is going on all over the place and the Medea has been lately cutting out a lot of it all because of commercials for the different businesses out there interfering making it hard for everything.

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Yes it should be before things get worse. Sinclair broadcasting is buying several local station all over the country. They are a right wing propaganda machine like Fox News.That is actually against current government regulation about a single group owning too many television stations in any one market. However that rule is being waived by the Trump organization and allowing it.

noworry28 Level 8 Dec 29, 2017
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Yes-should be fairness in broadcasting We are polarized because of Fox News and Breitbart favoritism to tRUMP and the Right Wing.

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Yes, in some ways ending it was the beginning of the end for educated public discourse in the USA. Ending it is what allowed the rise of Faux News, Rush Limbaugh, and their ilk. And now even the mainstream media has pretty much gone the way of Faux News. It should be restored, by the republic has been so propagandized and damaged the past three decades I don't see much hope for a return to sanity.

Druvius Level 7 Dec 29, 2017
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