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Steve, I think even 2 broadcast affiliates in the same market might draw FCC interest.

The FCC has been very busy lately. Decision last month:

The FCC just repealed a 42-year-old rule blocking broadcast media mergers

The regulations, eliminated in a 3-to-2 vote by the Federal Communications Commission, were first put in place in the 1970s to ensure that a diversity of voices and opinions could be heard on the air or in print.

Pai said, traditional media outlets now face more competition than ever — and rules that once enforced a diversity of viewpoints are no longer needed.

One long-standing rule repealed Thursday prevented one company in a given media market from owning both a daily newspaper and a TV station. Another rule blocked TV stations in the same market from merging with each other if the combination would leave fewer than eight independently owned stations. The agency also took aim at rules restricting the number of TV and radio stations that any media company could simultaneously own in a single market.

A major beneficiary of the deregulatory moves, analysts say, is Sinclair, that is seeking to buy up Tribune Media for $3.9 billion.

Andrew Schwartzman, an expert on media law at Georgetown University...the decisions will “reduce or eliminate” the need for Sinclair to sell off many stations to receive regulatory approval for the deal.

Next on the FCC's agenda, now that net neutrality has been repealed, is lifting the cap on the number of TV stations owned nationally by a single company.

FCC Launches Review of TV Station Ownership Cap

WASHINGTON — The FCC gave the go-ahead on Thursday to review a rule that limits the number of TV stations that a single entity can own, a proceeding that could ultimately allow media companies to own many more outlets.

The FCC’s 3-2 party line vote launches a period to collect public comment on what to do about the national ownership cap, which is now set at 39% of U.S. TV households. The changes could include raising the cap or eliminating it altogether.

Previously, the FCC repealed the reg that said a TV station owner had to have a physical studio at every location where it held a TV license. Now it is legal for an owner of a large number of stations to eliminate all the local news operations and feed news and opinion from a single central location.

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