Argument: Fairness Doctrine actually stifles public debate
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"Broadcasting, reintroducing the Fairness Doctrine". Debatabase. 27 Aug. 2008 - "When the Fairness Doctrine was in place it actually stifled debate and prevented controversial issues being freely debated over the airwaves. This was because its requirement for balance left broadcasters open to charges of bias and fearful of litigation or of losing their licenses. In order to prevent this, stations simply chose to avoid all discussion of controversial issues. By contrast, the lifting of the Fairness Doctrine in 1987 had a liberating effect on broadcasters, allowing talk radio to flourish and encouraging the debate of a great variety of important issues, from a wide range of perspectives. There can be no doubt that bringing the doctrine back would again have a “chilling effect” on the public debate which democracy needs to flourish."
"No need to bring back the 'fairness doctrine'". Concord Monitor. 13 Nov. 2008 - "It sounds innocuous, even noble: In exchange for a license to use the public airwaves, broadcasters must demonstrate to the Federal Communications Commission that they are airing issues of public importance and reserving airtime for opposing views. But the FCC abandoned this requirement in 1987, and the intervening years have seen an explosion of forums and media for expressing a given point of view."
Jim Puzzanghera. "Democrats speak out for Fairness Doctrine ". Los Angeles Times. July 23, 2007 - Many, many broadcasters testified they avoided issues they thought would involve them in complaints.