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The US introduces new rules requiring broadcasters to identify foreign government material

FILE PHOTO: The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) logo is seen ahead of the FCC's net neutrality hearing in Washington
FILE PHOTO: The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) logo is seen prior to the FCC’s net neutrality hearing in Washington February 26, 2015. REUTERS/Yuri Gripas/File Photo

March 15, 2022

By David Shepardson

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The U.S. Federal Communications Commission (FCC) said on Tuesday new requirements coming into effect today requiring broadcasters to disclose when foreign governments or their agents are renting time on their airwaves.

The FCC unanimously approved the new rules in April 2021. The commission said the new rules will come into effect immediately for new leases and will have to be implemented for existing contracts within around six months.

The rules require disclosure at the time of broadcast when a foreign government agency has directly or indirectly paid a radio or television station to broadcast material. Previous rules do not specify when and how foreign government funding should be publicly announced.

The issue has taken on a new urgency following the Russian invasion of Ukraine.

FCC Chairwoman Jessica Rosenworcel said Tuesday that “in light of recent events, this effort – which is about transparency – has taken on a new meaning. It is important that audiences know when a broadcaster has been compensated for broadcast content by a foreign government.”

Last year, Rosenworcel said commission reports on programs funded by foreign governments had multiplied in recent years.

“We know that foreign companies are buying time for broadcast stations in markets across the country, including programs sponsored by the Chinese government and programs sponsored by the Russian government here in our country’s capital,” she said in April 2021.

According to a memo reported by CNN, Russian media outlet RT America told its employees this month that it was ceasing production and laying off most employees.

Earlier this month, DirecTV, the largest satellite provider in the United States, said it plans to shut down RT America in response to Moscow’s invasion of Ukraine.

(Reporting by David Shepardson, Editing by Chizu Nomiyama and Frank Jack Daniel)

https://www.oann.com/u-s-implements-new-rules-requiring-broadcasters-to-identify-foreign-government-program/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=u-s-implements-new-rules-requiring-broadcasters-to-identify-foreign-government-program The US introduces new rules requiring broadcasters to identify foreign government material

Dais Johnston

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