is the only Washington-based organization devoted to representing listeners’ and speakers’ interests in communications and technology issues before the Federal Communications Commission, other policy-making bodies, and in the courts. MAP’s staff attorneys provide guidance and representation to scores of national and local non-profit groups annually. They appear frequently at academic, legislative, and professional meetings to ensure that the needs of the public are not forgotten as policies are established for the next generation.
grew out of the movement that began with the landmark United Church of Christ litigation of the 1960s. Those cases, involving the failure of a Mississippi TV station to serve the African American community, established that members of the viewing and listening public have the legal right, derived from the First Amendment, to participate in FCC proceedings.
In 1972, lawyers concerned with promoting public accountability and social justice in the media formed MAP
to advance the rights of the public to participate in the democratic process. In its early days, MAP’s work implementing the FCC’s Fairness Doctrine helped open TV networks to anti-war and civil rights activists.
According to the National Journal, MAP
is “considered by some … dollar-for-dollar the best-run public interest group in Washington.”
occupies a unique role as a Washington thought leader in communications and technology policy. From leading efforts to convince the FCC to create the Low Power FM radio service to being among the first to advocate for open access and network neutrality, MAP
provides critical policy leadership and council to the public interest and media reform community. As new media and communication platforms have developed, MAP
has fought to assure the public’s right to access is institutionalized and protected.
is at the forefront of efforts to develop media policies which will, quite literally, govern the terms of voter participation and public discourse in the next generation. MAP
works to ensure that current and future media and telecommunications technologies promote, and do not impede, democratic values.