Administration Won't Appeal Rejection of FCC's Weakened Ownership Rules

By: (AP) The Bush administration will not ask the Supreme Court to overturn a ruling that struck down the Federal Communication Commission's sweeping changes of media ownership rules.

The FCC had until Monday to decide whether to appeal the ruling by the 3rd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Philadelphia. The Justice Department, in consultation with the FCC, decided against an appeal, FCC spokeswoman Rebecca Fisher said today.

The FCC must now return to the drawing board and revise the rules. Fisher did not say why the administration decided not to appeal.

The Republican-dominated FCC completed two years of review and voted 3-2 along party lines in 2003 to ease decades-old ownership restrictions. The changes included allowing a single company to own TV stations and a newspaper in the same area.

Critics said such a change would encourage mergers and stifle diversity in news and entertainment.


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