May 31, 2003

OPEN-SOURCE GOVERNMENT: This is amusing:

WASHINGTON (CNN) – The Federal Communications Commission has received so many public comments on its Web sites regarding Monday’s vote on media ownership consolidation that the agency is having “problems” with its server, an FCC official said Friday.

And the messages aren’t just coming via e-mails. The official said the FCC is experiencing problems with their voice comment phone line, which has also been swamped.

The official said the agency is working to fix the problems.

The FCC is scheduled to vote Monday on proposed changes to its rules on multiple ownership of broadcast outlets. The changes are expected to be approved 3-2, with the backing of FCC Chairman Michael Powell. . . .

Opposition to relaxing the rules has brought together strange bedfellows like Common Cause, the National Rifle Association, the liberal National Organization for Women, and the conservative Family Research Council.

Maybe this proves Michael Powell’s point about the ability of alternative media to spread news — the Big Media have virtually blacked this out, but they’re still hearing from the people. On the other hand, it certainly proves my point about the need to defend the Internet from Big Media control. (Via Richard Bennett).