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IS TO BE CONSIDERED A NEWSPAPER WITHIN THE $50 NEWSPAPER AND PERIODICAL PURCHASE LIMITATION IMPOSED BY SECTION 104 OF THE GENERAL APPROPRIATION ACT. 1950: REFERENCE IS MADE TO YOUR LETTER OF AUGUST 29. HOLDING THAT THE PUBLICATION " VARIETY" IS A NEWSPAPER WITHIN THE MEANING OF THE PROVISION CONTAINED IN VARIOUS ACTS MAKING APPROPRIATIONS FOR THE INDEPENDENT OFFICES OF THE GOVERNMENT FOR THE PAST SEVERAL YEARS. THE SAID SECTION IS AS FOLLOWS: WHERE APPROPRIATIONS IN THIS TITLE ARE EXPENDABLE FOR THE PURCHASE OF NEWSPAPERS AND PERIODICALS AND NO SPECIFIC LIMITATION HAS BEEN PLACED THEREON. OR TRAFFIC PERIODICALS NECESSARY IN CONNECTION WITH THE PERFORMANCE OF THE AUTHORIZED FUNCTIONS OF THE AGENCIES FOR WHICH FUNDS ARE HEREIN PROVIDED.

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B-56445, OCTOBER 30, 1950, 30 COMP. GEN. 171

NEWSPAPERS AND PERIODICALS - STATUS OF PUBLICATION "VARIETY" THE PUBLICATION " VARIETY" CONTAINING ITEMS OF GENERAL INTEREST TO THE PUBLIC ON DEVELOPMENTS AND OCCURRENCES IN THE FIELDS OF THE THEATER, MOTION PICTURES, MUSIC, RADIO, AND TELEVISION, WHICH ALSO MIGHT BE FOUND IN ANY METROPOLITAN DAILY NEWSPAPER, IS TO BE CONSIDERED A NEWSPAPER WITHIN THE $50 NEWSPAPER AND PERIODICAL PURCHASE LIMITATION IMPOSED BY SECTION 104 OF THE GENERAL APPROPRIATION ACT, 1951.

COMPTROLLER GENERAL WARREN TO THE CHAIRMAN, FEDERAL COMMUNICATIONS COMMISSION, OCTOBER 30, 1950:

REFERENCE IS MADE TO YOUR LETTER OF AUGUST 29, 1950, 8051, REQUESTING RECONSIDERATION OF THE DECISION OF THIS OFFICE DATED APRIL 25, 1946, B- 56445, 25 COMP. GEN. 734, HOLDING THAT THE PUBLICATION " VARIETY" IS A NEWSPAPER WITHIN THE MEANING OF THE PROVISION CONTAINED IN VARIOUS ACTS MAKING APPROPRIATIONS FOR THE INDEPENDENT OFFICES OF THE GOVERNMENT FOR THE PAST SEVERAL YEARS, CURRENTLY APPEARING AS SECTION 104 OF THE GENERAL APPROPRIATION ACT, 1951, PUBLIC 759, 81ST CONGRESS, APPROVED SEPTEMBER 6, 1950, 64 STAT. 720. THE SAID SECTION IS AS FOLLOWS:

WHERE APPROPRIATIONS IN THIS TITLE ARE EXPENDABLE FOR THE PURCHASE OF NEWSPAPERS AND PERIODICALS AND NO SPECIFIC LIMITATION HAS BEEN PLACED THEREON, THE EXPENDITURES THEREFOR UNDER EACH SUCH APPROPRIATION MAY NOT EXCEED THE AMOUNT OF $50: PROVIDED, THAT THIS LIMITATION SHALL NOT APPLY TO THE PURCHASE OF SCIENTIFIC, TECHNICAL, TRADE, OR TRAFFIC PERIODICALS NECESSARY IN CONNECTION WITH THE PERFORMANCE OF THE AUTHORIZED FUNCTIONS OF THE AGENCIES FOR WHICH FUNDS ARE HEREIN PROVIDED.

IT IS STATED IN YOUR LETTER THAT THE PUBLICATION " VARIETY" IS A VALUABLE SOURCE OF DETAILED TRADE INFORMATION CONCERNING IMPORTANT BUSINESS ASPECTS OF RADIO AND TELEVISION BROADCASTING AND OF DEVELOPMENTS IN SUCH INDUSTRY WHICH ARE OF VITAL CONCERN TO YOUR COMMISSION. ALSO, IT IS STATED THAT UNDER THE REFERRED-TO DECISION OF THIS OFFICE ONLY A VERY LIMITED NUMBER OF COPIES OF THE PUBLICATION CAN BE SECURED WITHIN THE $50 LIMITATION, SO THAT IT HAS BEEN NECESSARY TO CIRCULATE THE COPIES OF THE PUBLICATION WHICH WERE SECURED FROM OFFICE TO OFFICE WITHIN THE COMMISSION WITH THE RESULT THAT INFORMATION WHICH WOULD HAVE BEEN PARTICULARLY VALUABLE IF RECEIVED AT THE TIME OF PUBLICATION DOES NOT COME TO THE ATTENTION OF PROPER COMMISSION OFFICIALS OR EMPLOYEES UNTIL SO LATE THAT MUCH OF ITS VALUE IS LOST. IN VIEW THEREOF, YOU STATE THAT THE BASIS FOR THE DECISION OF APRIL 25, 1946, HOLDING THAT THE PUBLICATION APPEARS TO FALL WITHIN THE DEFINITION OF "NEWSPAPER" OR "NEWSPAPER OF GENERAL CIRCULATION," AS SET FORTH IN THE VARIOUS COURT DECISIONS QUOTED OR CITED THEREIN HAS BEEN REEXAMINED AND IT IS SUGGESTED THAT, BASED THEREON AND THE DECISION IN THE CASE OF THE CONTINENTAL LIFE INSURANCE COMPANY V. MAHONEY, 49 S.W. 2D 371, A PUBLICATION--- WHETHER IT IS INTENDED FOR THE PUBLIC GENERALLY, OR FOR A PARTICULAR CLASS OF BUSINESS MEN AND CARRIES ITEMS OF SPECIAL INTEREST TO THE LATTER--- IS NOT A NEWSPAPER UNLESS IT REGULARLY CARRIES A RECORD OF EVENTS OCCURRING OF GENERAL INTEREST TO THE PUBLIC AS A WHOLE. YOU STATE THAT AN EXAMINATION OF " ARIETY" REVEALS THAT IT CARRIES ONLY NEWS, ADVERTISING, OR OTHER INFORMATION OF INTEREST TO THOSE ENGAGED IN, OR OTHERWISE INTERESTED IN, SOME PHASE OF THE ENTERTAINMENT INDUSTRY.

A REEXAMINATION OF THE COURT DECISIONS QUOTED OR CITED IN THE OFFICE DECISION OF APRIL 25, 1946, AND THE CONTINENTAL LIFE INSURANCE COMPANY CASE, CITED BY YOU, LEAVES NO DOUBT THAT THE SAID DECISIONS REQUIRE THAT TO BE CONSIDERED A NEWSPAPER A PUBLICATION MUST CARRY NEWS OR RECORDS OF OCCURRENCES OF GENERAL INTEREST TO THE PUBLIC AT LARGE. HOWEVER, THE PUBLIC GENERALLY IS CERTAINLY INTERESTED IN THE THEATER, MOTION PICTURES, MUSIC, RADIO, AND TELEVISION, THE DEVELOPMENTS AND OCCURRENCES IN THOSE FIELDS, AND THE PERSONALITIES INVOLVED. IN FACT, THOSE FIELDS OCCUPY A SUBSTANTIAL PORTION OF THE AVERAGE PERSON'S TIME AND INTERESTS. METROPOLITAN DAILY NEWSPAPERS REGULARLY DEVOTE A CONSIDERABLE PORTION OF THEIR SPACE TO SUCH FIELDS. ALSO, WHILE CERTAIN OF THE FEATURES FOUND IN " VARIETY" APPEAR TO BE INTENDED FOR AND VIEW THE ENTERTAINMENT WORLD FROM THE ASPECT OF PERSONS ENGAGED THEREIN AS A VOCATION OR BUSINESS, IT IS ALSO TRUE THAT MANY ITEMS THEREIN ARE SUCH AS MIGHT APPEAR IN ANY METROPOLITAN DAILY NEWSPAPER INTENDED FOR THE GENERAL PUBLIC AND OF INTEREST TO THEM. WHILE THE PAPER, CONSIDERED AS A WHOLE, IS PROBABLY OF PARTICULAR INTEREST TO THOSE ENGAGED IN THE ENTERTAINMENT WORLD, THE ARTICLES OR RECORDS OF OCCURRENCES DEALT WITH THEREIN, OR AT LEAST SOME PORTION THEREOF, APPEARS TO BE OF GENERAL INTEREST TO THE PUBLIC AT LARGE. ACCORDINGLY, THE REQUIREMENT OF THE COURT DECISIONS THAT A NEWSPAPER, IN ORDER TO BE SO CONSIDERED, CARRY NEWS OR RECORDS OF OCCURRENCES OF GENERAL INTEREST TO THE PUBLIC APPEARS TO BE FULFILLED BY THE PUBLICATION " VARIETY," WHICH OTHERWISE IN ITS FORMAT AND REGULARITY OF PUBLICATION AT SHORT INTERVALS PROPERTY IS TO BE CONSIDERED A NEWSPAPER. UNDER THE CIRCUMSTANCES, THE DECISION OF APRIL 26, 1946, APPEARS TO HAVE BEEN PROPER AND UPON REVIEW I AM CONSTRAINED TO ADHERE TO THE VIEW THAT " VARIETY" IS REQUIRED TO BE CONSIDERED A NEWSPAPER WITHIN THE MEANING OF THE APPROPRIATION PROVISION INVOLVED.

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