As the WGA fights one David & Goliath battle with the studio strike, they've now joined another, teaming up with the Screen Actors Guild to take on the FCC's new media consolidation rules, which could go into effect as early as next month. In a joint statement from the two unions, they express their support for a bill from Senators Byron Dorgan and Trent Lott trying to slow down the legislation to give the public time to voice their own opinions... and hopefully derail the rules altogether. Thanks to Nikki Finke, here's the text of the press release...
"LOS ANGELES – The Writers Guild of America, West (WGAW) and the Screen
Actors Guild (SAG) today united in support of a bill that will provide
for a more reasoned and thoughtful evaluation of any changes that the
Federal Communications Commission (FCC) may make to critically
important media ownership rules. The bipartisan legislation was
introduced today by Senators Byron Dorgan (D-ND) and Trent Lott (R-MS).
"The Media Ownership Act of 2007" would create a 90-day window for the
public to comment on any proposed media ownership rules put forward by
the FCC. We feel that it is vital that the public be allowed ample
opportunity to comment on media ownership decisions, a key issue of
concern to members of the creative community and consumers.
The WGAW and SAG agree with statements made today by Senator Dorgan
that “Diversity of media ownership is vital in a democracy.” We applaud
Senator Dorgan’s comments on media ownership rulings that the bill
“recognizes the importance of a wide range of media owners and local
content, and requires a process that does not rush past those concerns
to open the gates for even more consolidation of media ownership.”
The WGAW and SAG urge Congress to act on this bill, and we are hopeful
that further media consolidation will be reviewed thoroughly to protect
creative and independent content as well as consumers."