Red Lion Broadcasting Case Study

423 Words2 Pages
Facts The Red Lion Broadcasting Co. held a broadcast as part of a “Christian Crusade” series. During this broadcast, a book was discussed that was written by Fred Cook. The broadcaster said that Mr. Cook had been, “fired by a newspaper for making false charges against city official, and that he worked for a Communist-affiliated publication.” Mr. Cook said this broadcast was a personal attack against him and demanded airtime for him to be able to respond and defend himself. Red Lion Broadcasting Co. refused to give him airtime. The FCC said that Red Lion Broadcasting Co. was in violation of the “fairness doctrine” which requires that “public issues be presented by broadcasters and that each side of those issues be given fair coverage.” Red…show more content…
Because of this limitation, the government has the ability to regulate the medium of broadcasting more cautiously. The Court mentioned that having a license to broadcast only permits just that, broadcasting. The permit does not allow the licensee to dominate or exploit that frequency. The Court ruled that “there is nothing in the First Amendment which prevents the Government from requiring a licensee to share his frequency with others and to conduct himself as a proxy or fiduciary with obligations to present those views and voices which are representative of his community and which would otherwise, by necessity, be barred from the airwaves...” Therefore, the First Amendment of the Constitution was not violated. The “scarcity of broadcast frequencies,” gives the government a significant interest in making those frequencies available to express all points of view rather than simply monopolizing the airwaves to those who hold licenses. The Government’s adequate concern when it comes to ensuring “that a broadcaster’s programming ranges widely enough to serve the public interest” is the main standing for this
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