![if gte IE 9]><![endif]><![if gte IE 9]><![endif]><![if gte IE 9]><![endif]>
Thank You For Submiting Feedback!
Supreme Court of the United States
February 10, 11, 1943, Argued ; May 10, 1943, Decided
[*193] [**999] [***1350] MR. JUSTICE FRANKFURTER delivered the opinion of the Court.
In view of our dependence upon regulated private enterprise in discharging the far-reaching role which [****7] radio plays in our society, a somewhat detailed exposition of the history of the present controversy and the issues which it raises is appropriate.
These suits were brought on October 30, 1941, to enjoin the enforcement of the Chain Broadcasting Regulations promulgated by the Federal Communications Commission on May 2, 1941, and amended on October 11, 1941. We held last Term in Columbia System v. United States, 316 U.S. 407, and National Broadcasting Co. v. United States, 316 U.S. 447, that the suits could be maintained under § 402 (a) of the Communications Act of 1934, 48 Stat. 1093, 47 U. S. C. [***1351] § 402 (a) (incorporating by reference the Urgent Deficiencies Act of October 22, 1913, 38 Stat. 219, 28 U. S. C. § 47), and that the decrees of the District Court dismissing the suits for want of jurisdiction should therefore be reversed. On remand the District Court granted the Government's motions for summary judgment and dismissed the suits on the merits. 47 F.Supp. 940. The cases are now here on appeal. 28 U. S. C. § 47. Since they raise substantially [****8] the same issues and were argued together, we shall deal with both cases in a single opinion.
On March 18, 1938, the Commission undertook a comprehensive investigation to determine whether special regulations applicable to radio stations engaged in chain [*194] broadcasting 2 were required in the "public interest, convenience, or necessity." The Commission's order directed that inquiry be made, inter alia, in the following specific matters: the number of stations licensed to or affiliated with networks, and the amount of station time used or controlled by networks; the contractual rights and obligations of stations under their agreements with networks; the scope of network agreements containing exclusive affiliation provisions and restricting the network from affiliating with other stations in the same area; the rights and obligations of stations with respect to network advertisers; [**1000] the nature of the program service rendered by stations licensed to networks; the policies of networks with respect to character of programs, diversification, and accommodation to the particular requirements of the areas served by the affiliated stations; the extent to which affiliated [****9] stations exercise control over programs, advertising contracts, and related matters; the nature and extent of network program duplication by stations serving the same area; the extent to which particular networks have exclusive coverage in some areas; the competitive practices of stations engaged in chain broadcasting; the effect of chain broadcasting upon stations not licensed to or affiliated with networks; practices or agreements in restraint of trade, or in furtherance of monopoly, in connection with chain broadcasting; and the scope of concentration of control over stations, locally, regionally, or nationally, through contracts, common ownership, or other means.
[****10] On April 6, 1938, a committee of three Commissioners was designated to hold hearings and make recommendations [*195] to the full Commission. This committee held public hearings for 73 days over a period of six months, from November 14, 1938, to May 19, 1939. Order No. 37, announcing the investigation and specifying the particular matters which would be explored at the hearings, was published in the Federal Register, 3 Fed. Reg. 637, and copies were sent to every station licensee and network organization. Notices of the hearings were also sent to these parties. Station licensees, national and regional networks, and transcription and recording companies were invited to appear and give evidence. Other persons who sought to appear were afforded an opportunity to testify. 96 witnesses were heard by the committee, 45 of whom were called by the national networks. The evidence covers 27 volumes, including over 8,000 pages of transcript and more than 700 exhibits. The testimony of the witnesses called by the national networks fills more than 6,000 pages, the equivalent of 46 hearing days.
Full case includes Shepard's, Headnotes, Legal Analytics from Lex Machina, and more.
319 U.S. 190 *; 63 S. Ct. 997 **; 87 L. Ed. 1344 ***; 1943 U.S. LEXIS 1119 ****; 1 Media L. Rep. 1965
NATIONAL BROADCASTING CO., INC. ET AL. v. UNITED STATES ET AL. 1
Prior History: [****1] APPEAL FROM THE DISTRICT COURT OF THE UNITED STATES FOR THE SOUTHERN DISTRICT OF NEW YORK.
APPEALS from judgments of the District Court dismissing suits to enjoin enforcement of chain broadcasting regulations promulgated by the Federal Communications Commission.
Disposition: 47 F.Supp. 940, affirmed.
stations, network, Regulations, broadcasting, radio, public interest, license, programs, chain, affiliation, licensee, contracts, frequencies, anti-trust, practices, advertising, provisions, broadcasting station, facilities, Commerce, listening, channels, powers, matters, confer, wave, radio station, no license, convenience, conditions
Communications Law, Federal Acts, Federal Communications Act, General Overview, Regulators, US Federal Communications Commission, Authorities & Powers, Regulated Practices, Radio Spectrum Management, Frequency Allocations, Public Enforcement, Licensing, Qualifications, Renewals & Revocations, Renewals, Remedies, Regulated Entities, Broadcasting, Rate Regulation, Overview & Legal Concepts, Theft of Services, Radio Communications, Administrative Law, Judicial Review, Standards of Review, Governments, Federal Government, US Congress, Constitutional Law, Freedom of Speech, Free Press, Fundamental Freedoms, Scope, De Novo Standard of Review, Orders & Hearings, Complaints & Charges, Procedural Matters