September 18, 2009
Media Ownership Rules Pop Up as an Issue
With the current state of the economy, creditors are being forced to think about taking equity positions in debtors. In most sectors that doesn't present a problem, but an article in today's WSJ points to the media sector where this is becoming a surprise issue for unwitting creditors who are taking equity. The FCC must approve these sales. While the 2006 ownership rules make cross-ownership and ownership of multiple platforms easier to accomplish, there's still an entire merge approval process at the FCC. Phil Weiser (formerly of U. Colorado, now of the U.S. Department of Justice Antitrust Division as deputy assistant attorney general for international, policy and appellate matters) has a nice paper that appeared last year in the Federal Communications Law Review on the challenges of the dual merger review regime (DOJ/FTC/FCC).
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