Brief Fact Summary. The Respondent, the Democratic National Committee (Respondent) and other public interest groups brought a suit, seeking declaration of their rights to purchase radio airtime for comment on public issues.
Synopsis of Rule of Law. This case stands for the proposition that radio stations are to be afforded the same freedom of the press that is given to newspapers in determining their own content.
Issue. This case presents the issue of whether a radio station can be compelled to sell airtime to public interest organizations for dissemination of their viewpoints, on the premise that airtime is scarce and to be shared.
The Supreme Court of the United States (Supreme Court) held that it would be a violation of the First Amendment constitutional rights of broadcasting companies to require them to disseminate viewpoints other than their own. Thus, the Respondents claims for equal airtime were denied in favor of the Petitioner, Columbia Broadcasting System, Inc. (Petitioner) freedom of the press.
The power of a privately owned newspaper to advance its own political, social, and economic views is bounded by only two factors: first, the acceptance of a sufficient number of readers--and hence advertisers--to assure financial success; and, second, the journalistic integrity of its editors and publishers.View Full Point of Law