Call Me Stormy

Finding righteous currents in turbulent times

Farewell, Fairness Doctrine

Twenty-five years ago, the Federal Communications Commission unanimously repealed the Fairness Doctrine, which required broadcasters to air all sides of controversial issues. The Fairness Doctrine sounds, shall we say, “fair,” in theory. But in practice,  the doctrine had a chilling impact on free speech, due to the fact that “there is a frontal conflict between the First Amendment…and the government considering whether or not the fairness of a particular report passes muster,” says George Mason University’s Thomas Hazlett.

Hazlett sat down with Reason.TV’s Nick Gillespie to discuss the Fairness Doctrine and how its repeal — under President Ronald Reagan — helped to give rise to talk radio in the form we know it today.

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