The Radio Act of 1912 was the first law directly affecting commercial radio; it allowed the government to award radio licenses and to assign spectrum frequencies.
The Radio Act of 1927 established the Federal Radio Commission and gave the government control over radio broadcasting to the public.
The Communications Act of 1934 established the Federal Communications Commission (FCC).
The FCC must make regulations for radio that are in the "public interest, convenience, or necessity," but there is a different standard for television, cable, and new technologies.
The broadcast spectrum is considered to belong to broadcast licensees.
Broadcast licensees are considered to be trustees of the spectrum
Broadcasting is regulated in part because it is more pervasive than other media
Broadcasting is regulated in part because of its potential impact on children
FCC Commissioners are appointed by the president from among members of his own party.
Congress passes all FCC regulations, and they are enforced by the executive branch of the federal government.
Appeals from an FCC administrative law judge's opinion are made to a federal circuit court
Courts can overturn FCC decisions arbitrarily
There is a clear standard by which to interpret what the "public interest" is in the FCC's mandate to operate in the public interest
The public interest means whatever the FCC says it means, at any given time
The threat of being sued by the FCC for monetary damages generally keeps broadcasters in line
Broadcasters with licenses can decide which part of the spectrum they want to use, and can change spectrum locations whenever they wish.
A station is called a pirate ship when it operates from a ship off shore
At the turn of the most recent century, Congress and broadcasters supported the FCC's efforts to develop low power FM radio stations
The FCC cannot set rules for the networks because networks are not licensed by the FCC.
The FCC can set rules for the relationship of the networks with their affiliates
It contributes to international economic growth
It leads to diverse viewpoints in programming
It provides broader support for out-of-office political parties.
It assures upgrades in broadcasting equipment.
There is no limit on how many radio stations one company may own throughout the country
There is no limit on how many television stations one company may own throughout the country.
Limits on national ownership of television stations relate to percentage of television households reached.
Limits on ownership of radio stations relate to national percentage of radio households reached.
There are no longer any cross-ownership bans in place in large markets.
Radio stations must petition the FCC and allow citizens' groups to express their views before they can change formats
Indecency is forbidden in all mass media
The FCC has established a "safe harbor" in which no indecency will be aired.
The programming requirements of the Children's Television Act apply both to broadcast and to cable.
The commercial limits in the Children's Television Act apply only to broadcast stations, not to cable systems
Cable systems and broadcast stations must air at least 10 hours of children's television programming per week
The V-chip ratings system was developed by the FCC together with concerned citizen's groups
Section 315 (equal opportunity political broadcast rules) applies to both cable systems and broadcast stations.
Section 312 (reasonable access rules) applies to broadcast stations but not to cable systems.
Section 312 requires radio and television stations to give reasonable access to candidates for all political offices
Section 312 guarantees that a candidate for federal office cannot be denied time on broadcast stations.
A candidate's appearance in a debate
A candidate's appearance on a cooking show
The voice and picture of a candidate being attacked in an opponents advertisement
A candidate's appearance in a news story
The station need not notify the candidate's opponent of the use.
The station must grant equal opportunity to the Democratic candidate for governor
The use does not relate to Section 312.
The use triggers Section 315 for the candidate's Republican opposition in the primary election.
The lowest-unit-rate provision of Section 315 would take effect in October.
Broadcast stations could not refuse to run political ads
Cable systems could require that they be allowed to edit the political ads to protect themselves from liability for libel.
Debates aired by broadcast stations, in which minor candidates were not permitted to participate, will trigger Section 315 for those stations
Public broadcast stations are government supported and may not receive any commercial (corporate) support.
A "use" by a candidate's supporter can trigger the Zapple Rule for supporters of the candidate's opponent.
Cigarette advertising is allowed on the Internet, but not on television or radio.
The FCC has banned the advertising of distilled spirits on television since the 1960s.
The FCC has no jurisdiction over cable systems since they do not make use of the broadcast spectrum.
Local municipalities have sole regulatory power over cable systems because the municipalities grant cable franchises
The Telecommunications Act of 1996 has resulted in the development of many new competitors (a larger number of providers) in the telecommunications industry.
The decade in which the number of cable subscribers skyrocketed was between 1975 and 1985
If a city has granted a license to a cable company to operate in its jurisdiction, the city cannot then run its own cable service.
Satellite systems that compete with cable systems are not generally required to obtain franchises from local governments.
Local governments cannot award exclusive franchises to only one cable company.
"Must-carry" rules force cable systems to carry broadcast station programming
"New communication technologies" refer to mass media developed after broadcast and cable television.
Constitutional First Amendment standards are the same for all mass media.
Broadcasters have the rights over the Web broadcasts of their programs
More First Amendment freedom is allowed on the Internet than in broadcasting in part because it does not use the public spectrum, and people are not as likely to be inadvertently exposed to Internet content.
Obscene material is allowed on the Internet.
It is permissible for Internet news sites to link to newspaper sites, but not to republish their copyrighted material.
In general, ISPs in America are not liable for content on their site if they act only as common carriers, and do not screen the material that is posted through their service.
Internet law is only in its beginning stages, and there are no well-settled principles of law in this area.