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Thread: A New Proposal Looks To Loosen Radio Ownership Rules

  1. #1

    Exclamation A New Proposal Looks To Loosen Radio Ownership Rules

    One More Scoop Of Vanilla: A New Proposal Looks To Loosen Radio Ownership Rules

    June 7, 2019 Marissa Moss NPR

    Spearheaded by the National Association of Broadcasters (NAB), the new proposal — raised during the FCC's every-four-year assessment of media ownership laws, called the Quadrennial Review — could make the concept of "local radio" nearly extinct, say several groups opposing it.

    NAB's proposal would allow the purchase of up to 10 FM stations, with no cap on AM stations, in any market in the top 75 (as measured by Nielsen), with no ownership limits for markets outside of the top 75. And as stations swallow up others, that means more net financial risk for the owners – and thus less risk in what they play, in the interest of appealing to as broad an audience as possible.

    A Senate Commerce subcommittee hearing scheduled for June 12 but no clear date as to when the FCC will review the docket.

    U.S. Sen. Roger Wicker, R-Miss., chairman of the Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation, will convene a hearing titled, “Oversight of the Federal Communications Commission,” at 10:00 a.m. on Wednesday, June 12, 2019. As part of the Committee’s oversight responsibilities, this hearing will examine policy issues before the Federal Communications Commission and review its ongoing activities and proceedings.


    The Honorable Ajit Pai, Chairman, Federal Communications Commission
    The Honorable Michael O’Rielly, Commissioner, Federal Communications Commission
    The Honorable Brendan Carr, Commissioner, Federal Communications Commission
    The Honorable Jessica Rosenworcel, Commissioner, Federal Communications Commission
    The Honorable Geoffrey Starks, Commissioner, Federal Communications Commission

    *Witness list subject to change

    Hearing Details:

    Wednesday, June 12, 2019
    10:00 a.m.
    Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation

    This hearing will take place in the Dirksen Senate Office Building G50. Witness testimony, opening statements, and a live video of the hearing will be available on

  2. #2
    The real problem right now is that nobody wants to buy radio stations any more. There are more sellers than buyers. In just the past few months, great radio stations in major markets have sold cheaply because of the lack of competing offers. So several legendary rock radio stations were bought by a religious organization called Educational Media Foundation.

    There is no reason why rich rock stars who live in LA or NY didn't buy these plum radio stations. Stevie Wonder owns a station in LA, and it does very well. Instead rock stars prefer to do radio stations on Sirius. None of the groups objecting to the rule change have stepped forward with a willingness to buy. They just want to force their will on everyone else.

    It's been over 20 years since the last change in ownership rules. In the meantime, the two satellite radio companies were allowed to merge into a monopoly, and that monopoly has now bought Pandora. That conglomeration alone has shifted the balance of power in music towards Sirius/Pandora.

    The question to ask if: If mergers are OK in satellite radio and streaming, why is OTA radio still forced to operate like it's the 20th century? It makes no sense.

  3. #3
    Yes as sad as it us for us to admit it, as an investment, radio stations are the pits.
    If you are going to buy one it is going to have to be a labor of love, as most likely
    the best you should expect is to get slightly beyond the break even point.

    Sirius and Pandora channels do not come with the additional expense of transmitter site maintenance
    and government compliance. A former Top 40 AM powerhouse here recently sold (minus its transmitter
    site and studios) for $55K. A smaller station down the road sold for the price of a gently used sedan.

  4. #4
    There was a court hearing on the FCC deregulation proposal this week:

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