|Federal Communications Commission|
|Formed||June 19, 1934|
|Preceding Agency||Federal Radio Commission|
|Agency Executive||Kevin Martin, Chairman|
The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) is a United States government agency, created, directed, and empowered by Congressional statute (see and ), and with the majority of its commissioners appointed by the current president. Events 1179 - The Norwegian Battle of Kalvskinnet outside Nidaros. Year 1934 ( MCMXXXIV) was a Common year starting on Monday (link will display full 1934 calendar of the Gregorian calendar. The Federal Radio Commission ( FRC) was a government body that regulated Radio use in the United States from its creation in 1927 until its replacement Kevin Jeffrey Martin (born December 14 1966) is the Chairman of the Federal Communications Commission. The federal government of the United States is the central United States Governmental body established by the United States Constitution. Independent agencies of the United States government are those that exist outside of the departments of the Executive branch. The United States Congress is the bicameral Legislature of the federal government of the United States of America, consisting of two houses A statute is a formal written enactment of a Legislative authority that governs a Country, State, City, or County. Title 47 of the United States Code outlines the role of telegraphy in the United States Code. Title 47 of the United States Code outlines the role of telegraphy in the United States Code.
The FCC was established by the Communications Act of 1934 as the successor to the Federal Radio Commission and is charged with regulating all non-Federal Government use of the radio spectrum (including radio and television broadcasting), and all interstate telecommunications (wire, satellite and cable) as well as all international communications that originate or terminate in the United States. The Communications Act of 1934 was a United States federal law enacted as Public Law Number 416 Act of June 19 1934 ch The Federal Radio Commission ( FRC) was a government body that regulated Radio use in the United States from its creation in 1927 until its replacement Administrative law is the body of Law that governs the activities of administrative agencies of Government. The electromagnetic (EM spectrum is the range of all possible Electromagnetic radiation frequencies Radio is the transmission of signals by Modulation of electromagnetic waves with frequencies below those of visible Light. Television ( TV) is a widely used Telecommunication medium for sending ( Broadcasting) and receiving moving Images, either monochromatic The public switched telephone network ( PSTN) is the network of the world's public circuit-switched Telephone networks in much the same way that the This article is about artificial satellites For natural satellites also known as moons see Natural satellite. A cable is one or more Wires or Optical fibers bound together typically in a common protective jacket or sheath In Telecommunications, information transfer is the process of moving messages containing User information from a source to a sink It is an important factor in US telecommunication policy. The policy behind telecommunications in the US is directed by decision makers in the Municipal, State federal and International arenas as well as the Legislative The FCC took over wire communication regulation from the Interstate Commerce Commission. The Interstate Commerce Commission (or ICC) was a Regulatory body in the United States created by the Interstate Commerce Act of 1887 which was signed
The FCC's jurisdiction covers the 50 states of the United States of America, the District of Columbia, and U. S. possessions.
It is organized into seven Bureaus and ten Staff Offices.
'The Bureaus’ include processing applications for licenses and other filings, analyzing complaints, conducting investigations, developing and implementing regulations, and participating in hearings. The verb license or grant license means to give permission The noun license is the document demonstrating that permission This article is for the legal term For regulation of genes see Regulation of gene expression. In law a hearing is a Proceeding before a Court or other decision-making body or officer
The FCC's Offices provide reliable support services to the Bureaus. Even though the Bureaus and Offices have their individual functions, they regularly work together on FCC issues.
In 1934 Congress passed the Communications Act, which abolished the Federal Radio Commission and transferred jurisdiction over radio licensing to a new Federal Communications Commission. Title III of the Communications Act contained provisions very similar to the Radio Act of 1927, and the new FCC largely took over the operations and precedents of the FRC.
In 1940 the Federal Communications Commission issued the "Report on Chain Broadcasting. Year 1940 ( MCMXL) was a Leap year starting on Monday (link will display the full 1940 calendar of the Gregorian calendar. " The major point in the report was the breakup of NBC (National Broadcasting Company), but there were two other important points. The National Broadcasting Company ( NBC) is an American Television network headquartered in the GE Building in New York City's One was network option time, the culprit here being CBS. CBS Broadcasting Inc ( CBS) is an American radio and Television network. The report limited the amount of time during the day, and what times the networks may broadcast. Previously a network could demand any time it wanted from an affiliate. The second concerned artist bureaus. The networks served as both agents and employees of artists, which was a conflict of interest the report rectified.
In 1996 Congress enacted the Telecommunications Act of 1996, in the wake of the break-up of AT&T resulting from the U. The Telecommunications Act of 1996 was the first major overhaul of United States Telecommunications law in nearly 62 years amending the Communications Act of S. Justice Department's antitrust suit against AT&T. In part, the 1996 legislation attempted to create more competition in local telephone service by requiring Incumbent Local Exchange Carriers to provide access to their facilities for Competitive Local Exchange Carriers. ILEC, short for Incumbent local exchange carrier, is a local Telephone company in the United States that was in existence A Competitive Local Exchange Carrier ( CLEC) in the United States, is a Telecommunications provider company (sometimes called a " carrier
This policy has thus far had limited success and much criticism. See. e. g. Robert crandall The development of the internet, cable services and wireless services has raised questions whether new legislative initiates are needed as to competition in what has come to be called 'broadband' services. Congress has monitored developments but not as of 2007 undertaken a major revision of applicable regulation.
The inauguration of Ronald Reagan as President of the United States in 1981 accelerated an already on-going shift in the FCC towards a decidedly more market-oriented stance. A number of regulations felt to be outdated were removed, most controversially the Fairness Doctrine in 1987. The Fairness Doctrine was a policy of the US Federal Communications Commission (FCC that required the holders of Broadcast licenses both to present controversial The FCC also took steps to increase competition to broadcasters, fostering broadcast alternatives such as cable television.
In the early 2000s, the FCC began stepping up censorship and enforcement of indecency regulations again, most notably following the Janet Jackson "wardrobe malfunction" that occurred during the halftime show of Super Bowl XXXVIII. Decency is conformity to sociocultural standards of conduct and speech Janet Damita Jo Jackson (born May 16 1966 is an American recording artist and entertainer Super Bowl XXXVIII, which was broadcast live on February 1, 2004 from Houston Texas on the CBS television network in the Super Bowl XXXVIII was an American football game played on February 1, 2004 at Reliant Stadium in Houston Texas to decide the However, the FCC's regulatory domain with respect to indecency remains restricted to the public airwaves, notably VHF and UHF television and AM/FM radio.
On June 15, 2006, President George W. Bush signed into law the Broadcast Decency Enforcement Act of 2005 sponsored by Senator Sam Brownback, a former broadcaster himself, and endorsed by Congressman Fred Upton of Michigan who authored a similar bill in the United States House of Representatives. Events 763 BC - Assyrians record a Solar eclipse that will be used to fix the Chronology of Mesopotamian history Year 2006 ( MMVI) was a Common year starting on Sunday of the Gregorian calendar. The President of the United States is the Head of state and Head of government of the United States and is the highest political official in United States by George Walker Bush ( born July 6 1946 is the forty-third and current President of the United States. The Broadcast Decency Enforcement Act of 2005 was legislation in the United States Senate (bill number S The United States Senate is the Upper house of the bicameral United States Congress, the Lower house being the House of Representatives Samuel Dale Brownback (born September 12 1956) is the senior United States Senator from the U A presenter, or host (sometimes hostess, in feminine form is a Person or Organization responsible for running an event A Member of Congress is a Politician who is a member of a Congress. For the cofounder of Whirlpool Corporation, see Frederick and Louis Upton. Michigan ( is a Midwestern state of the United States of America. The United States House of Representatives is one of the two chambers of the United States Congress; the other is the Senate. The new law stiffens the penalties for each violation of the Act. The Federal Communications Commission will be able to impose fines in the amount of $325,000 for each violation by each station, which violates decency standards. Decency is conformity to sociocultural standards of conduct and speech The legislation raises the fine by a tenfold increase. 
The FCC is directed by five Commissioners appointed by the President and confirmed by the Senate for 5-year terms, except when filling an unexpired term. The President designates one of the Commissioners to serve as Chairperson. Only three Commissioners may be members of the same political party. None of them can have a financial interest in any Commission-related business. 
Chairman Kevin Martin (R-NC), Commissioner Michael Copps (D-WI), Commissioner Jonathan Adelstein (D-SD), Commissioner Deborah Taylor Tate (R-TN), Commissioner Robert M. McDowell (R-VA). Kevin Jeffrey Martin (born December 14 1966) is the Chairman of the Federal Communications Commission. Michael Joseph Copps (born 23 April 1940) is an American Federal Government official Jonathan Steven Adelstein is one of the five Commissioners on the Federal Communications Commission. Deborah Taylor Tate is one of five current United States FCC Commissioners Robert Malcolm McDowell is a telecommunications lawyer Federal Communications Commissioner President George W Three of them are Republicans and two are Democrats. All are appointed by the President.
A complete list of commissioners is available on the FCC website. Notable commissioners have included:
As to radio and television broadcasting, the Federal Communications Commission has one major regulatory weapon, revoking licenses, but short of that has limited leverage. Rosel H Hyde served as Chairman of the Federal Communications Commission from April 18, 1953 to October 3, 1954, and again from Wayne Coy ( November 23, 1903 &ndash September 24, 1957) served as Chairman of the Federal Communications Commission from December John C Doerfer ( November 30, 1904 &ndash June 5, 1992) served as Chairman of the Federal Communications Commission from July Robert E Lee ( March 31, 1912 - April 15, 1993) was a Commissioner of the Federal Communications Commission from October 6 George McConnaughey served as Chairman of the Federal Communications Commission from October 4, 1954 to June 30, 1957. Frederick W Ford ( September 17, 1909 &ndash July 26 1986) served as Chairman of the Federal Communications Commission from March Newton Norman Minow (born January 17, 1926) is an American Attorney and former Chairman of the Federal Communications Commission. Dean Burch ( December 20, 1927 - August 4, 1991) served as Chairman of the Federal Communications Commission from October 31 Richard E Wiley (born 1933) served as Chairman of the Federal Communications Commission from March 8, 1974 to October 13, 1977 Charles D Ferris (b 1931 served as Chairman of the Federal Communications Commission from October 17, 1977 to February 4, 1981. Mark S Fowler served as Chairman of the Federal Communications Commission from May 18, 1981 to April 17, 1987. Alfred C Sikes (born 1939 US administrator; served as Chairman of the Federal Communications Commission from August 8, 1989 James Henry Quello (born April 21, 1914, in Laurium Michigan) is Democratic communications politician and scholar from the U Reed E Hundt (born March 3 1948 in Ann Arbor Michigan) was chairman of the United States Federal Communications Commission from 1993 to William E Kennard (born 1957 in Los Angeles California) was chairman of the United States Federal Communications Commission (FCC from 1997 to 2001 appointed Michael Kevin Powell (born March 23, 1963) is an American Republican Politician. (see FCC MB Docket 04-232). Sanctions run a report-basis system. Additionally, broadcast licenses are supposed to be renewed if the station meets the "public interest, convenience, or necessity. " The Federal Communications Commission rarely checks except for some obvious and outstanding reason; burden of proof would be on the complainant. Fewer than 1% of station renewals are not immediately granted, and only a small fraction of those are ultimately denied.
The Federal Communications Commission also licenses amateur radio operators and stations, and does use its power to fine amateur radio operators who flagrantly violate its rules. It also licenses commercial operators who operate and repair certain radiotelephone, television, radar, and Morse code radio stations. A radiotelephone is a communications device that allows two or more people to talk using Radio. Radar is a system that uses electromagnetic waves to identify the range altitude direction or speed of both moving and fixed objects such as Aircraft, ships Morse code is a Character encoding for transmitting telegraphic information using standardized sequences of short and long elements to represent the letters numerals In recent years it has also licensed people who maintain or operate GMDSS stations. The Global Maritime Distress Safety System ( GMDSS) is an internationally agreed-upon set of Safety procedures types of equipment and communication protocols used While the FCC maintains control of the written and Morse testing standards, it no longer administers the exams, having delegated that function to private organizations.
Similar authority for regulation of U. S. government radio communications is vested in the President who has delegated it to National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA). The National Telecommunications and Information Administration ( NTIA) is an agency of the United States Department of Commerce that serves as the President
Source: from Federal Standard 1037C
Beginning in 1994, commercial spectrum has been allocated via competitive auctions rather than the previous method of "best public use. Federal Standard 1037C, entitled Telecommunications Glossary of Telecommunication Terms is a United States Federal Standard issued by the General Services Administration A spectrum auction is a process whereby a government uses an Auction system to sell the rights to transmit signals over specific electromagnetic wavelengths. " This was a cumbersome bureaucratic process in which competitors attempted to show that they were most capable of making best public use of the license they wished to obtain. The structure and licenses available in each auction are determined by vote of the Commission, with the licenses awarded to the highest bidders. Auctions are usually conducted on a simultaneous multiple-round basis, with all offered licenses being auctioned at the same time. Auctions proceed in bidding rounds of decreasing duration until no more bids are received. Revenues are deposited in the US Treasury to be spent by Congress. The United States Department of the Treasury is a Cabinet department and the Treasury of the United States government. The United States Congress is the bicameral Legislature of the federal government of the United States of America, consisting of two houses
The FCC has been criticized for awarding a digital TV (DTV) channel to each holder of an analog TV station license without an auction, as well as trading auctionable spectrum to Nextel to resolve public safety interference problems. Digital television (DTV is the sending and receiving of moving images and sound by discrete ( digital) signals in contrast to the analog signals used by Analog (or analogue) television encodes Television picture and sound information and transmits it as an Analog signal: one in which the Nextel Communications, styled NEXTEL, (Former NASDAQ: NXTL) now known as the Sprint Nextel Corporation, was a telecommunications firm based Nonetheless, in 2009, all analog terrestrial broadcast licenses in the U. S. will be terminated, with terrestrial television subsequently available only from the digital channels.
The FCC has been criticized on many fronts, for existing at all or being too restrictive and too permissive in its regulation. The word critic comes from the Greek el κριτικός ( el-Latn kritikós) "able to discern" which in turn derives from the word The regulatory body was originally formed to allot segments of the radio spectrum which were deemed scarce. Critics argue that today, the allotment of frequency band segments to specific uses hinders and prevents new spectrum uses for innovative technologies. Regulatory changes can have a dramatic effect on industries. For example, the requirement for televisions to be digital will make millions of analog sets obsolete overnight.
In the actions taken against broadcasters, critics charge that the FCC violates the First Amendment guarantee of Freedom of Speech, both directly by censorship and enforcement action sometimes alleged to be politically motivated, and indirectly by the general intimidation that FCC action allegedly creates, particularly with the U.S. Congress considering increasing fines exponentially. Freedom of speech is the freedom to speak freely without Censorship or Limitation. Intimidation (also called cowing) is intentional behavior "which would cause a person of ordinary sensibilities" fear of Injury or Harm. The United States Congress is the bicameral Legislature of the federal government of the United States of America, consisting of two houses FINE was created in 1998 and is an informal association of the four main Fair Trade networks F Fairtrade Labelling Organizations International
The FCC has considered requiring all broadcasters to retain copies of all broadcasts for up to three months (FCC MB Docket 04-232). Critics charge that this action would wipe out smaller broadcasters because of the enormous expense of having to purchase new equipment with the necessary features for content storage and the need for facilities to store content.
Low-power broadcasting has also been a source of contention, as the FCC has set the power limits very low, while allegedly making it nearly impossible for anyone except large corporations or large nonprofit organizations to obtain a license. Low-power broadcasting is the concept of Broadcasting at very low power and low cost to a small community area In Radio communication systems Equivalent isotropically radiated power ( EIRP) or alternatively Effective isotropically radiated power is the amount A corporation is a separate legal entity usually used to conduct business A non-profit organization ( abbreviated "NPO" also "not-for-profit" is a legally constituted Organization whose objective is to support or engage Although Stephen Dunifer won a case versus the FCC, few others have successfully argued against the Commission. Stephen Dunifer is the founder of Free Radio Berkeley in Berkeley California.
Another critique is that the Commission has historically been dominated by lawyers, often from the telecommunications industry, due to the FCC's direct effects on commerce and public policy. Commerce is a division of trade or production which deals with the exchange of goods and services from producer to final consumer This is in stark contrast to other technically-focused government agencies, such as the Nuclear Regulatory Commission, which is often populated by engineers and physicists. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (or NRC) is a United States government agency that was established by the Energy Reorganization Act in 1974 and was first
The FCC is also often criticized by amateur Radio operators for rule changes affecting the Amateur Radio Service, or for its perceived lack of enforcement of violations within the service and in general. Amateur radio, often called ham radio, is both a Hobby and a service in which participants called "hams" use various types of Radio communications
On the issue of broadcast indecency, the FCC has taken heat from conservatives and family-oriented groups for not sufficiently censoring and restricting sexually explicit and violent material to which the groups believe children should not be exposed (a Family Viewing Hour was instituted in the 1970s and then discontinued). The Family Viewing Hour was a policy established by the Federal Communications Commission in 1975. This article is about the Decade 1970-1979 For the Year 1970 see 1970.
While the FCC, under much criticism, has been tightening its control and censorship of broadcast television, the FCC does not have general authority to censor the internet, allowing broadcasters to use the internet as a source for their un-edited creative expression. In December 2006, NBC and Saturday Night Live posted an uncensored video on the NBC website and YouTube under the headings “Special Treat in a Box” or “Special Christmas Box”, otherwise known by its uncensored name, "Dick in a Box". The National Broadcasting Company ( NBC) is an American Television network headquartered in the GE Building in New York City's Saturday Night Live ( SNL) is a weekly late-night 90-minute American Sketch comedy / Variety show based in New York City " Dick in a Box " is an Emmy -winning Saturday Night Live digital short featuring Justin Timberlake and Andy Samberg The censored version of the video played on NBC's Saturday Night Live, and was bleeped (censored) sixteen times. Lorne Michaels, the creator and executive producer of Saturday Night Live, predicted that other shows and networks, time and money permitting, would surely follow NBC’s lead in making available material that was deemed not ready for prime time, or even late night.
The NBC show Studio 60 on the Sunset Strip had a story line where the FCC was fining the fictional NBS network an absurd amount of money for an obscenity said by a U. Studio 60 on the Sunset Strip was an American S. Marine during a live news broadcast in Afghanistan. They badmouth the FCC for being upset for a real life reaction of a near death incident in wartime being accidentally picked up in a required News broadcast. (The FCC requires that Educational programming be provided for free by networks in exchange for the right to broadcast over the airwaves. ) The problem becomes worse when they give them the option of losing the fee in exchange for a five second delay of live news feeds.
In 2003, the FCC Media Bureau produced a draft report analyzing the impact of deregulation in the radio industry.  The report stated that from March 1996 through March 2003, the number of commercial radio stations on the air rose 5. 9 percent while the number of station owners fell 35 percent. The concentration of ownership followed a 1996 rewrite of telecommunications law that eliminated a 40-station national ownership cap.
The report was never made public, nor have any similar analyses followed, despite the fact that radio industry reports were released in 1998, 2001 and 2002. In September 2006, Senator Barbara Boxer, who had received a copy of the report, released it. Barbara Levy Boxer (born 11 November 1940 is an American Democratic Politician and the current junior U 
In 2004, the FCC ordered its staff to destroy all copies of a draft study by Keith Brown and Peter Alexander, two economists in the FCC's Media Bureau. The two had analyzed a database of 4,078 individual news stories broadcast in 1998, showed local ownership of television stations adds almost five and one-half minutes of total news to broadcasts and more than three minutes of "on-location" news.
The conclusion of the study was at odds with FCC arguments made when it voted in 2003 to increase the number of television stations a company could own in a single market. (In June 2004, a federal appeals court rejected the agency's reasoning on most of the rules and ordered it to try again. )
In September 2006, Senator Barbara Boxer, who had received a copy of the report "indirectly from someone within the FCC who believed the information should be made public," wrote a letter to FCC Chairman Kevin Martin, asked whether any other commissioners "past or present" knew of the report's existence and why it was never made public. Barbara Levy Boxer (born 11 November 1940 is an American Democratic Politician and the current junior U She also asked whether it was "shelved because the outcome was not to the liking of some of the commissioners and/or any outside powerful interests?" Boxer's office said if she does not receive adequate answers to her questions, she will push for an investigation by the FCC inspector general. 
In a letter in response to Senator Boxer, FCC Chairman Martin said "I want to assure you that I too am concerned about what happened to these two draft reports. " The letter also said "I have asked the inspector general of the FCC to conduct an investigation into what happened to these draft documents and will cooperate fully with him. " Martin added that he was not chairman at the time the reports were drafted, and that neither he nor his staff had seen them. 
When it emerged in 2006 that AT&T, BellSouth and Verizon may have broken U. S. laws by aiding the National Security Agency in possible illegal wiretapping of its customers, Congressional representatives called for an FCC investigation into whether or not those companies broke the law. The National Security Agency/ Central Security Service ( NSA/CSS) is a cryptologic intelligence agency of the United States government The FCC declined to investigate, however, claiming that it could not investigate due to the classified nature of the program — a move that provoked the criticism of members of Congress.
“Today the watchdog agency that oversees the country’s telecommunications industry refused to investigate the nation’s largest phone companies’ reported disclosure of phone records to the NSA," said Rep. Edward Markey (D-Mass. Edward John "Ed" Markey (born July 11, 1946) has been a Democratic member of the United States House of Representatives since 1976 ) in response to the decision. "The FCC, which oversees the protection of consumer privacy under the Communications Act of 1934, has taken a pass at investigating what is estimated to be the nation’s largest violation of consumer privacy ever to occur. If the oversight body that monitors our nation’s communications is stepping aside then Congress must step in. ”
The character "Broadband" (FCC Kids Zone) looks like Doraemon, a popular manga character in Japan. is a Japanese Manga series created by Fujiko F Fujio (the pen name of Hiroshi Fujimoto which later became an Anime series and Asian ˈmɑŋgə is the Japanese word for Comics (sometimes called komikku コミック and print Cartoons In their modern form manga date from shortly Doraemon was created for print in magazines in 1969, which makes Doraemon predate the FCC's character. According to Japanese news media, both Shogakukan (copyright manager) and Fujiko-production (owner of the copyright) have warned the FCC over the alleged copyright infringement, but so far there has been no answer. is a Japanese publisher of dictionaries, Literature, Manga, Non-fiction, DVDs and other media in Japan. 'Copyright infringement' (or copyright violation) is the unauthorized use of material that is covered by Copyright law in a manner that violates
With the major demographic shifts occurring in the country in terms of the racial-ethnic composition of the population, where 9 of the 10 largest cities, for example, now have "majority minority" populations, the FCC has also been criticized for ignoring the issue of decreasing racial-ethnic diversity of the media. This includes charges that the FCC has been watering down the limited affirmative action regulations it had on the books, including no longer requiring stations to make public their data on their minority staffing and hiring. In the second half of 2006, groups such as the National Hispanic Media Coalition, the National Latino Media Council, the National Association of Hispanic Journalists, the National Institute for Latino Policy, the League of United Latin American Citizens (LULAC) and others held town hall meetings in California, New York and Texas on media diversity as its affects Latinos and other communities of color. The National Institute for Latino Policy (NiLP was established in 1982 as the Institute for Puerto Rican Policy (IPR in New York City, United States as a non-profit and The League of United Latin American Citizens ( LULAC) is a political advocacy group for Latinos in the United States. They documented widespread and deeply-felt community concerns about the negative effects of media concentration and consolidation on racial-ethnic diversity in staffing and programming. See El Diario La Prensa's editorial on media diversity. El Diario la Prensa is the largest and oldest Spanish-language daily newspaper in New York City, and the oldest Spanish-language daily in the United States At these Latino town hall meetings, the issue of the FCC's lax monitoring of obscene and pornographic material in Spanish-language radio and the lack of racial and national-origin diversity among Latino staff in Spanish-language television were other major themes.
The FCC database of broadcasting towers  provides information about the height and year built of broadcasting towers in the USA. It does not contain information about the structural types of towers or about the height of towers used for non-broadcasting purposes like NDBs, LORAN-C transmission towers or VLF transmission facilities of the US Navy, or about towers not used for transmission like the BREN-Tower. LORAN ( LO ng R ange A id to N avigation is a terrestrial Radio navigation system using Low frequency Radio transmitters Very low frequency or VLF refers to radio frequencies (RF in the range of 3 KHz to 30 KHz. BREN Tower is a guyed steel framework mast, 1527 feet (465 m high on the Nevada Test Site in Nevada, USA.