Amid Controversy, FCC Ditches Newsroom ‘Study’

Study Will No Longer Grill Outlets Over Editorial Decisions

Facing a growing controversy around its Critical Information Needs (CIN) study, the FCC has announced that it is suspending the bulk of the study, and will not be grilling owners of media outlets about their editorial decisions.

The study was supposed to focus on “under-served communities,” but sparked major concerns when they started talking about probing the editorial decisions in newsrooms and political content of their coverage, as well as seeking to create a database of data regarding all media outlets’ coverage.

The plans sparked inevitable questions of whether the FCC intended to start pushing media into more administration-friendly coverage, particularly in editorial content, and even if they didn’t, it was fairly obvious that the program could be used in such a way.

The FCC insisted the CIN study will continue, but listing all of the objectionable things that are being removed what is left seems to be a face-saving effort to keep the dead program going in name only.

Author: Jason Ditz

Jason Ditz is Senior Editor for He has 20 years of experience in foreign policy research and his work has appeared in The American Conservative, Responsible Statecraft, Forbes, Toronto Star, Minneapolis Star-Tribune, Providence Journal, Washington Times, and the Detroit Free Press.