Common Cause Files Petition to Deny Proposed Nexstar, Tribune Merger

Yesterday, Common Cause joined by Public Knowledge, United Church of Christ OC, Inc., and Sports Fans Coalition filed a petition with the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) asking the agency to deny the proposed merger of Nexstar Media Group and Tribune Media Company. If approved, Nexstar would control 216 stations across 118 markets reaching 72 percent of U.S. households, far exceeding the Congressionally established ownership cap of 39 percent.

Statement of Michael Copps, Former FCC Commissioner and Common Cause Special Adviser 

“The Nexstar-Tribune merger is a bad deal for communities across the country who want local news from diverse and independent voices reporting on stories that impact their everyday lives. This merger would give Nexstar an unprecedented amount of control of our local media inevitably leading to reporter layoffs and consolidated newsrooms. If approved, communities can expect less deep-dive investigative reporting, less locally-originated programming, and less local news. This will only lead only to less informed citizens, negatively impacting our democracy and civic dialogue.

“The FCC’s mandate is to promote broadcast localism, viewpoint diversity, and more media ownership by women and people of color. At a time when the broadcast marketplace is already highly consolidated with a handful of conglomerates owning much of our local media, the FCC should block this merger and uphold a framework that gives communities diverse and independent sources of news and information.”

To read the full petition, click here.