Media Access Project runs out of funds, will shut down

The Media Access Project, a public-interest law firm focused on media issues, announced last week that it will close its doors May 1 due to a lack of funds. Raising funds for public-interest groups has become more challenging, said Andrew Jay Schwartzman, MAP’s senior v.p., and the firm’s “sophisticated, inside-the-Beltway” work is a hard sell for supporters. MAP had recently lost support from Open Society Foundations, the philanthropic organization established by liberal financier George Soros. Founded in 1973, the Washington, D.C.-based firm has added its voice to debates over diversity in media ownership, the FCC’s creation of its low-power FM service, net neutrality and other issues. MAP will host a sendoff event in May to celebrate its accomplishments and “to help retire its small debt,” the organization said in a press release.