The Federal Communications Commission is poised to make some big changes in who owns how many television stations - changes that will, in all probability, mean fewer big companies will control more of the broadcast outlets in America.

And, while there probably won't be any immediate effect locally, the changes in the FCC regulations could well prevent changes in the ownership of several local stations.For years, broadcasters have been restricted by the so-called 12/25 rule - meaning that no single entity could own more than 12 stations, and that the stations a company owns could reach no more than 25 percent of the nation's viewers.

The rules were instituted back in the days when the only way to watch TV was to turn on a local broadcast station. The FCC wanted to keep individual broadcasters from becoming too powerful.

But in recent years, those local broadcasters have faced increasing competition, not only from a proliferation of broadcast stations, but from cable, satellite and other programming options.

(And the timing of these possible changes is thought to have more than a little bit to do with the fact that the Republicans, who favor deregulation of the TV industry, will control Congress come January.)

Reportedly, the FCC is set to abolish the restriction on the number of stations companies can own, and raise the limit on coverage to 30 percent or 35 percent of the nation's audience - and possibly as much as 50 percent, eventually.

That, no doubt, would mean that companies that own a lot of TV stations - the networks included - could and would buy more.

In Utah, it would also probably mean that the three network outlets owned by large companies will remain under the same ownership for some time to come.

Majority ownership of KUTV-Ch. 2 is in the process of being purchased by NBC, which plans to then turn around and sell the station to a CBS/Group W partnership. KSTU-Ch. 13 is owned by Fox.

And ABC affiliate KTVX-Ch. 4 is owned by United/Chris Craft, a major station ownership group that's a partner in the new United Paramount network, which will be launched in January.

With a relaxation on the ownership caps, CBS/Group W, Fox and United/Chris Craft could all go out and buy more stations without having to worry about unloading any they already own to remain under the 12/25 limits.

In other words, a change in the rules would decrease the possibility that any of those stations would be sold to new owners. (And it's not like there was a high probability of any of them being sold, anyway.)

Another change in the rules might actually result in some local changes, however.

Current FCC regulations restrict a company to owning only one station in any community. Reportedly, the agency is considering letting companies own two TV stations in any community - either two UHF (channels 14 and above) stations or one VHF (channels 2-13) and one UHF.

Which means that, theoretically, the folks who own KUTV, KTVX, KSL or KSTU might cast their eyes upon the local independent stations, KJZZ-Ch. 14 and KOOG-Ch. 30. The thinking is that you could run a second station with the staff you already have in place to run the first - increasing revenues without increasing costs.

KSL-Ch. 5 already explored a possible local marketing agreement with KJZZ when Larry Miller bought the station a couple of years back. Under such an agreement, KSL would have taken over management of the station.

Then there's KTVX, whose owners are also co-owners of the United Paramount network - the new network that KJZZ has affiliated with. Common ownership for those two stations might make sense.

And if Miller can maintain Ch. 14 as an outlet for the Utah Jazz, might he think of simply selling it to another local station?

Similar possibilities exist with KOOG in Ogden. And the possibility exists that one of the local VHF stations might look into the possibility of starting up another UHF station of its own.

These options are all simply theoretical at this point. But if and when the FCC changes its regulations, they do become possibilities.

VIDBITS: The trade paper Variety reports that, should ABC not pick the show up for the fall, "My So-Called Life" could move to cable's Lifetime network. Which would make sense - the show is produced by ABC Productions and ABC is half-owner of Lifetime.

- ABC newsman David Brinkley, 74, has denied widespread reports that he plans to retire after the 1996 elections.

- From the "You've Gotta Be Kidding File" - Mr. Television himself, Milton Berle, is doing a guest shot on "Beverly Hills, 90210" on Jan. 4 as a old actor suffering from Alzheimer's disease. Fox even insists Berle is a big fan of the show.

- CBS has another "Waltons" TV movie in production for broadcast sometime in 1995. "John-Boy's Wedding," which is about - well, you know - will be the second reunion for the cast of the hit '70s show. Last year's "A Walton Thanksgiving" was a smash hit in the ratings.