To the Federal Communications Commission:

The FCC must deny the Sinclair-Tribune merger. Sinclair has consistently proven itself to be an unworthy steward of the public airwaves — promoting racist commentators, spreading Trump propaganda, slashing newsroom staff, and forcing bigoted must-run content on local stations — and should not be rewarded with a merger that will allow the company to double down on its bad behavior.

If the FCC approves this deal, Sinclair — already the biggest broadcaster in the country — will reach more than 70 percent of the U.S. population. This merger is so bad for local communities that the FCC would have to slash nearly every existing media-ownership protection to force it through — a major shift the agency is making without any chance for public comment.

We urge the FCC to listen to communities and block this despicable deal.

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    Tell the FCC: Cancel the Sinclair Mega-Merger

    Trump TV is coming.

    Last week FCC Chairman Ajit Pai announced his plan to eviscerate longstanding limits on how much local media one company can own — limits that right now stand in the way of Sinclair’s proposed merger with Tribune.1

    That’s right: Trump’s FCC chairman is fast at work getting rid of anything that could block Trump TV from reaching the majority of U.S. households.

    If you can imagine such a thing, Sinclair is actually worse than Fox News: It hides in the shadows, forcing trusted local news stations to air “must-run” segments featuring some of Trump’s closest aides and advisers spewing racist and Islamophobic rhetoric designed to fuel hysteria.2

    If Trump’s FCC chairman and Sinclair get their way, we’ll enter a new era of mega-media consolidation that would put the same cookie-cutter content on every channel and more journalists standing in the unemployment line. The deal would allow Trump propaganda disguised as local news to reach nearly 70 percent of U.S. households.3

    President Trump only labels news as “fake” when it’s critical of his agenda. He’s convinced his supporters that journalists are “enemies of the American people.” That’s not democracy — that’s dictatorship.

    The FCC has temporarily paused the clock on the deal (while it’s busy ramming through a bunch of rule changes to smooth the way!) but that gives us another chance to weigh in on the record.

    Let’s shut it down: Tell the FCC to cancel the Sinclair mega-merger and shield local news from Trump’s dangerous agenda.


    1. “Trump’s FCC Chairman Announces Plan to Scrap Ownership Limits Standing in Way of Sinclair Mega-Merger,” Free Press, Oct. 25, 2017: https://www.freepress.net/press-release/108361/trumps-fcc-chairman-announces-plan-scrap-ownership-limits-standing-way-sinclair

    2. “Sinclair Requires TV Stations to Air Segments That Tilt to the Right,” The New York Times, May 12, 2017: https://www.nytimes.com/2017/05/12/business/media/sinclair-broadcast-komo-conservative-media.html

    3.“Free Press Moves to Stop Disastrous Sinclair-Tribune Mega-Merger,” Free Press, Aug. 7, 2017: https://www.freepress.net/press-release/108254/free-press-moves-stop-disastrous-sinclair-tribune-mega-merger

    Original images by Flickr users Gage Skidmore and futureatlas.com/blog