sufficient bite to be meaningful

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Anonymous

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Hi,

I don't quite understand the underlined sentences. Could anyone do me a favor?

In general , the Federal Communications Commission's efforts (to regulating fairness) met with little success throughout the 1950s, partly due to its inability to adequately police the requirements. A further contributory factor was the commission's internal confusion over how best to delimit a balance between advocacy on the part of the broadcaster, on the one hand, and the rights of those expressing opposing views, on the other. The net effect of the fairness requirements, then, was to encourage the makers of news programmes to avoid reports which were likely to attract the attention of the FCC even if, as was likely the case, its strictures would lack sufficient bite to be meaningful.

Thanks a lot.
 

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Celia said:
Hi,

I don't quite understand the underlined sentences. Could anyone do me a favor?

In general , the Federal Communications Commission's efforts (to regulating fairness) met with little success throughout the 1950s, partly due to its inability to adequately police the requirements. A further contributory factor was the commission's internal confusion over how best to delimit a balance between advocacy on the part of the broadcaster, on the one hand, and the rights of those expressing opposing views, on the other. The net effect of the fairness requirements, then, was to encourage the makers of news programmes to avoid reports which were likely to attract the attention of the FCC even if, as was likely the case, its strictures would lack sufficient bite to be meaningful.

Thanks a lot.

The first sentence states that the FCC was confused (unsure) about how to write rules that prohibited broadcasters from presenting only one side of an issue to the public.

The second sentence states that the media tried to comply with the rules even though the punishments were not very severe. It is likely that they wanted to avoid coming before the FCC for fear that the penalties would be increased.
 
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