The FCC's Media Bureau is marking its first year anniversary. The bureau began operations March 25, 2002 as part of Chairman Michael Powell's plan to streamline the organizational structure. The Bureau is responsible for policy and licensing programs for cable television, broadcast television and radio, and post-licensing direct broadcast satellite matters.
Bureau Chief Kenneth Ferree said, "The converging technologies of the broadcasting and cable television industries increasingly raise policy issues that require expertise in both areas. The evolution of the Media Bureau reflects today's dynamic media marketplace."
Highlights of Media Bureau actions in during the last twelve months include preparing a Report & Order adopting In-Band, On-Channel digital audio broadcasting, which will permit terrestrial radio to transition to digital, and authorization of the first digital radio stations. The bureau also facilitated the DTV transition to through several actions.
In the area of media ownership, Media Bureau staff produced the 2002 Biennial Review of Broadcast Ownership Rules NPRM and is currently reviewing the more than 15,000 comments that have been filed in this record. Staff also produced eight papers as part of an effort to produce theoretical and empirical analysis supporting the FCC's 2002 Media Ownership Biennial Review.
The bureau also continues work on radio transactions that have been set aside for further review.
Media Bureau personnel participate in the Media Security and Reliability Council, a federal advisory committee, following the events of Sept. 11, 2001, in order to study, develop and report on ways to assure the reliability, robustness and security of the broadcast and multichannel video programming distribution industries.