Wheeler to Deliver Policy Address While On West Coast

FCC chairman Tom Wheeler will appear at a town hall meeting in Oakland, Calif., Jan. 9 to talk about the impact of media consolidation, and make a policy speech while on that West Coast swing next week.

Free Press, one of the sponsors of the event, announced the appearance. An FCC source confirmed Wheeler will be there, as well as confirming that the chairman would be making a policy speech at another, unnamed, venue.

Wheeler has pledged to engage with groups outside of FCC headquarters and Washington, so that he can hear "the voices of the American people."

The event co-sponsors include the Center for Media Justice, Free Press, ColorOfChange and the National Hispanic Media Coalition, all part of the Voices for Internet Freedom coalition (www.internetvoices.org). Wheeler has also been a voice for Internet freedom. which he has pledged to espouse and uphold.

The event is billed as a way for members of the community to "share their stories — and to tell Wheeler about the impacts of an increasingly corporate media environment" and "to tell Wheeler face to face about the kind of media system that best meets our needs. Moreover, it is a forum to advocate for the health and well-being of our families and our communities.

Wheeler is headed West next week for the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas, where he has a Jan. 8 date with Consumer Electronics Association president Gary Shapiro for one-on-one interview. He is also planning to give a policy speech in California as part of the West Coast swing that will also include some private and public meetings with tech execs and others.

Contributing editor John Eggerton has been an editor and/or writer on media regulation, legislation and policy for over four decades, including covering the FCC, FTC, Congress, the major media trade associations, and the federal courts. In addition to Multichannel News and Broadcasting + Cable, his work has appeared in Radio World, TV Technology, TV Fax, This Week in Consumer Electronics, Variety and the Encyclopedia Britannica.