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DeMint: Government Should Free Media to Innovate

Conservative South Carolina Republican Senator Jim DeMint says the FCC needs to get out of the way of media companies trying to develop new business models.

According to an outline of his remarks at a the Free State Foundation in Washington this week, DeMint said the government "needs to formally withdraw from private sector arrangements in our media sector."

Under a court order and a congressional mandate, the FCC is currently reviewing its media ownership regs and DeMint, ranking member of the Communications Subcommittee that has jurisdiction over the FCC, had some advice. That included "dramatically reducing ownership restrictions regarding television, radio, and newspapers."

DeMint is no fan of regulation in general and the FCC's brand in particular. DeMint introduced a bill in the last Congress to block what at the time was the FCC's propopsal to reclassify Internet access under Title II. He was also the only senator to vote against the nomination of FCC Chairman Julius Genachowski.

"We need to be ready for and allow new relationships to develop between content producers and distributors," DeMint says. "In short, new business models and delivery arrangements need to be free to develop, yet our policies are built around last century's media models."

He also put in a plug for flexible spectrum use and reforming the Universal Service Fund so that it is narrowly targeted to subsizide infrastructure where none exists.