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name of his informant—too many court decisions have held the contrary. But even a general identification of source would sometimes be embarrassing to the source for quite valid and honorable reasons.
If general identification merely means the announcement at the beginning and end of the broadcast (mentioned in lines 21 and 22) it could still take a good deal of time. In a typical broadcast dealing with a dozen or more topics—and most of them deal with more than that-such an announcement might be something like
"The news in this broadcast comes from the Associated Press, the l'uited Press, the publicity releases of the National Association of Manufacturers, the United Automobile Workers' Union; reports of the Department of Commerce, Department of the Interior, and the Department of State; material from the information services of the French and Netherlands Governments; the speaker's personal recollection of conversations with foreign statesmen over the past several years; and information gathered from various other sources by myself and my staff. The editorial expressions are those of the speaker, who is an employee of the Nonesuch Broadcasting Co.” Such an announcement at the beginning and end would make something of a dent in any broadcast-greatly limiting the amount of information that could be given because of lack of time and, without question, severely injuring the listenability of the program. Of course, if each specific news item had to be identified as to source and under a strict interpretation of the proposed law that would certainly be possible the listening value of the program would be completely destroyed.
I should respectfully suggest to the committee that the restrictions proposed under section 332 (a) would apply to many things other than the sort of thing it is intended to cover. I suggest that the committee consider the effect of this regulation on sports broadcasts, theatrical and musical and book and motionpicture reviews, fashion discussions, and other such radio programs which are popular and educational-and lughly opinionated-and which are classified as news features. Will Ted Husing and Deems Taylor and Hedda Hopper and Lily Dache have to stop and explain which of their statements are fact and which of them are opinion when discussing the greatest fullback in gridiron history, or the relative merits of Bach and Irving Berlin, or whether something is a two-star or a four-bell picture? Previous witnesses have suggested the possible effects on television and facsimile printing of newspapers. Furthermore, you can't legislate against voice inflection or against voice which are either insidiously smooth and persuasive or provocative and unduly exciting. The committee, it seems to me, in its commendable effort to protect the listening public must also weigh the possibility that this new legislation may open a Pandora's box of future complications.
To sum up: This is an important problem, but not a new problem. The radio networks, the individual stations, and the individual broadcasters have long recognized it, both as a responsibility and as an opportunity, and have sought to meet it. I believe that their voluntary solution, currently applied almost universally, is about as good a solution as can be reached. Almost without exception the newscaster is identified as to name; frequently his position with the broadcasting company is given and also the city from which his broadcast origi. nates. Usually the individual is further identified as a "reporter" or a "news analyst” or a "commentator" or, even more specifically, the wording characterizes the nature of the program with some such statement as “here is Mr. So-and-so with the news behind the news" or "with the news and his comments on the news.”
In the last analysis the object of all our thoughts is the listener—the ordinary everyday citizen who turns on his radio to hear news and comment from one or a number of broadcasters. I believe that it is a grave error to underestimate his intelligence and his power of discrimination. He is free to turn the programs on and off at his own discretion; and we all know that he does it because we all do it ourselves. Eventually, after a certain period of listening he arrives, according to the best American tradition, at his own opinion regarding the perits of the program, which he almost invariably identifies with his opinion of the person whose voice he hears. He would do so regardless of the explanatory matter before and after or during the program and, also in accordance with the best American tradition, he is free to listen or not to listen. He exercises that right. Furthermore, he exercises his right to tell the world in general, and 18 in particular, just what he thinks. He exercises that right, too. That's the free American way of doing things. I believe in it.
The CHAIRMAN. The next witness is Mr. Faulkner, of the Voice of Freedom Committee, of New York City. Do you have a prepared brief, Mr. Faulkner?
STATEMENT OF STANLEY FAULKNER, ATTORNEY, REPRESENTING
VOICE OF FREEDOM COMMITTEE, NEW YORK, N. Y.
Mr. FAULKNER. The brief has already been submitted.
The CHAIRMAN. Well, I impress upon you our desire that you shall not duplicate the brief in your oral testimony.
Mr. FAULKNER. I will attempt to make my statement as brief and to the point as I can.
The CHAIRMAN. Now, will you please identify yourself?
Mr. FAULKNER. Yes.' My name is Stanley Faulkner. I am an attorney in the city of New York, and acting as special counsel for the Voice of Freedom Committee.
The CHAIRMAN. What is that?
Mr. FAULKNER. The Voice of Freedom Committee is a committee that was organized some time in the month of February 1947 of publicspirited citizens who became aroused and incensed over the curtailment of free speech over the radio, particularly with respect to commentators.
The CHAIRMAN. You proceeded on the theory that there had been curtailment of freedom of speech as far back as February?
Mr. FAULKNER. Well, our committee was organized in the month of February.
The CHAIRMAN. And to conibat restrictions upon freedom of speech, I understood you to say.
Mr. FAULKNER. Correct; over the air principally.
furnish us with a list of the oflicers of the organization?
Mr. FAULKNER. The officers of the organization have not yet been definitely elected. The committee is still in its formative stages. However, Stella Holt is the executive secretary, and the list of our sponsors is contained on our letterhead. They include Prof. H. P. Fairchild, Dorothy Parker, Algenon D. Black, Orson Welles, Rabbi J.C. Cohen, and a host of others.
The CHAIRMAN. Were you chosen by these directors who are not yet elected to come here and represent the organization?
Mr. FAULKNER. No; I have been chosen by the working committee that is presently carrying on the work of the Voice of Freedom Committee, through the executive secretary, to appear here today and present the views of this committee.
Senator MOORE. Those are the people on this letterhead?
Mr. FAULKNER. The sponsors, the list of names, is contained on this letterhead.
Senator CAPEHART. Who is the chairman?
Mr. FAULKNER. There is no elected chairman at the moment. I would say that Dorothy Parker is the individual who has been more or less the acting head of the organization.
Senator CAPEHART. I think it would be helpful to us and for the record if you would tell us at least one or two of the instances that prompted you to organize this committee.
Mr. FAULKNER. Well, may I refer particularly to some items I have before me, that are newspaper clippings from the local press of the city of New York. I refer to and should like to quote the statement of William L. Shirer. Mr. Shirer was a news commentator over CBS. His sponsor was J. B. Williams Shaving Cream. And after 10 years as a news commentator on CBS, he was removed from the air, and his statement was: “They do not like my
views.” Senator CAPEHART. Who did not like his views?
Mr. FAULKNER. The CBS. Now, may I also state that in addition to William L. Shirer, such other commentators as Mr. Vandercook, Robert St. John, Johannes Steele, and Orson Welles have been deprived of time on the air because of what would appear to be their liberal sentiments and viewpoints expressed over the air.
Senator CAPEHART. Who took them off the air!
Mr. FAULKNER. Well, whoever was contracting with them. I don't know the particular contracting parties. But they were no longer given time on the air after they had had such time for a period prior thereto.
Senator CAPEHART. What do you believe was the reason they were taken off?
Mr. FAULKNER. Our opinion is that their commentaries on the news and on events of the day were rather liberal and progressive in viewpoint, to the extent that their views were not entirely acceptable to either their sponsors or the particular radio station over which they spoke.
Senator CAPEIIART. Are you saying that either their sponsor or the station was opposed to their specific views ?
Mr. FAULKNER. I am not clear in my own mind on these ramifications. And I think, Mr. Chairman, you yourself in your questioning of Mr. Henry as to how these news items are edited, and whether these commentators or these news analysts or commentators formulate their selection of the news, elicited the information that that is submitted for blue-penciling to a particular news editor; and I think we all learned a little this morning as to how these commentators and news analysts and reporters eventually get these broadcasts on the air without any knowledge coming to the listener of what transpired previously thereto.
The CHAIRMAN. You assert that a system of censorship, or control, or exclusion, or whatever the word is, has existed in the past, and that as early as February you started this organization in opposition to it. Now, are you opposing this legislation on the basis of what existed 6 months ago, and to which you were then opposed?
Mr. FAULKNER. No; my appearance before the committee is in response to a question asked when our committee was formed. No; absolutely not. Our committee has been formed and continues to exist to watch legislation such as this proposed legislation, to see wherein it might curtail free speech on the air, in violation of the first amendment of the Constitution.
The CHAIRMAN. It is rather interesting to me to find your organization and the NAB, for instance, in the same position. I thought you
might be able to differentiate your opposition from theirs. But the fact remains, if you are to speak in opposition to the bill, as I understand, that
both in the same bed. Mr. FAULKNER. Well, sometimes politics makes strange bedfellows. But I think that our position may be, on the whole, slightly different. I have not heard too much of the testimony of the broadcasting associations and broadcasting stations concerning those aspects of the bill to which we are particularly in opposition. Our feelings go directly to the heart of the bill, which would curtail free speech.
The CHAIRMAN. Of course, we are proceeding on a directly contrary belief. We think that we are guarding and guaranteeing freedom of speech.
Mr. FAULKNER. Well, maybe you will be able to convince me as we go along.
The CHAIRMAN. No; I am not going to try to convince you. It is a question of your convincing me. · Mr. FAULKNER. If I may, then, I shall refer to particular portions of the bill which we feel are objectionable in that they do violate and curtail free speech. The CHAIRMAN. You may proceed in your own way:
Senator JOHNSON. May I make this suggestion. As I understood the testimony presented by the representatives of NAB, it was indicated that they were opposed to any restrictions whatsoever on their activities. But they had no objections to, and in fact they advocated, restrictions which would be exercised by themselves.
Thy wanted to exercise the controls, and they stated very frankly that they so desired. But what they objected to, and the only thing they objected to, was restrictions by the Congress, or by the agencies of the Congress, either in the law or through regulations, which would be placed upon them.
The CHAIRMAN. They started back almost as far as Josephus in mustering their arguments against the bill, in opposition to any efforts on our part to assure freedom to those who wanted to speak and to those who wanted to listen. And I am just utterly confused to find this witness and the NAB and the NBC all hooked up together.
Senator JOHNSON. My understanding is that the difference between the present witness and the former witnesses is that their objection was to congressional restraints, and the witness's objections also pertain to network and station restraints.
The CHAIRMAN. When you get right down to the brass tacks of things, 2 years ago, or 3 years ago, they were against Commission controls, and now they are against both Commission and broadcasters' controls.
Senator JOHNSON. But it seems to me that while the arguments of the former witnesses on behalf of free speech may have to them seemed logical and sincere, they do not seem logical to me. The present witness's arguments seem more logical, in support of removing restraints of all kinds in order to have freedom of speech, as we understand that term. Now, I do not mean to be interpreting the witness's ideas on this question, but that is the way I understand it.
Mr. FAULKNER. If I may, Senator, I would say that, broadly speaking, you are a good advocate of our position. We do abhor and we do object to censorship wherever it may exist. And I think that is where
the distinction rests between the broadcasting associations and ourselves. They want to do the censorship, and say, “Congress, hands off.” We say, "Hands off in both places." We say there should be no censorship.
The CHAIRMAN. Then you ought to be supporting this bill.
Mr. FAULKNER. Well, I think in certain respects the bill does not take hands off.
The CHAIRMAN. Do you not think it makes some advance in that direction, enough to justify your support, rather than to have nothing?
Mr. FAULKNER. No; I think that in some respects, if I may say so, the bill is a severe curtailment-severe in the strict sense—in its re:striction of free speech. I would like to point out those portions of the bill which we feel are unfair and might even be unconstitutional.
The CHAIRMAN. I am sorry that I interrupted. I shall now listen.
Mr. FAULKNER. I am here to make a statement and also to answer any questions, and I think the questioning has been helpful in all respects. But if I may refer to some portions of this bill. My first point here, is on political broadcasting. It would appear from this bill that political broadcasting is restricted primarily to election periods; that is, primary, special, or general elections, while the importance of free expression of political opinion over the air, through the course of the year preceding elections, is not considered.
I think that that is a bad thing. The air waves should be open at all times to the opportunity for persons either in their individual capacities or as representatives of organizations who are duly constituted and recognized organizations, to be able to use the air for expressing their opinions on certain political events and certain political situations which exist in our country and elsewhere, during the year.
The further restriction, as we see it, in connection with political affairs is that during an election, whether it be a special, general, or primary election, as the bill recites, expressions of opinion are restricted to political candidates, or duly authorized representatives of political candidates, or duly authorized or organized parties—political parties.
We feel that that creates a very anomalous situation. Because if an individual, a citizen in good standing, wants to take the air to express an opinion, or if an organization duly constituted wants to take the air to express an opinion as to a political candidate, one who is running for election or reelection, he should not be beholden to any opposing candidates, to go to him and say, “Now, authorize us to get on the air so that we may speak against that political candidate." or who asks to be permitted to speak against a particular referendum or matter that is coming before the people for election purposes.
We think that might cause labor unions, let us say, to feel that they had to go and request authorization to go out and speak against candidates. And we want to keep labor unions free from political organizations, if it can possibly be done, and political organizations free of labor unions. But if this bill is going to force labor unions or independent organizations, or civic organizations to come and say, “Now, look, we want to oppose somebody, but we cannot do it unless we are authorized to do it," then they become part and parcel of that particular organization. And I think that creates a bad interweaving