On July 15, the Senate Commerce Committee held a hearing for Federal Communication Commission (FCC) nominees Mignon Clyburn and Meredith Atwell Baker. President Obama nominated Clyburn and Baker to fill two vacant FCC Commissioner positions. The FCC has five Commissioners, only three of which can be from the same political party; the party of the current administration constitutes the majority. Clyburn, a Democrat, and Baker, a Republican, will be replacing outgoing Commissioners Jonathan Adelstein and Debi Tate, respectively. (Later in the week, the Senate confirmed Clyburn and Atwell.)
While most the country has been occupied with the Sotomayor confirmation, we at FMC have also been keeping our eyes on another nomination process -- namely, who will fill a pair of important Federal Communications Commission posts.
When President Obama entered office, three out of the five FCC Commissioner spots, including the FCC Chairmanship, were vacant. Last month, the Senate confirmed Julius Genochowski to head up the agency; you can read about it here). On July 15, 2009, the Senate Commerce Committee held a hearing questioning Obama's nominees for the two remaining Commissioner seats. read more
An Analysis of Radio Playlists in a Post FCC-Consent Decree World
Kristin Thomson, Education Director, Future of Music Coalition
Tuesday, June 30, 2009
In April 2007, the Federal Communications Commission and the nation’s four largest radio station group owners – Clear Channel, CBS Radio, Citadel and Entercom – signed a voluntary agreement as a response to collected evidence and widespread allegations about payola influencing what gets played on the radio. It has been two years since the FCC, radio station group owners and independent labels met around the table. The immediate questions for the music and policymaking community are: Did these agreements serve their purpose? Have payola-like practices been curtailed? Did the agreements have any effect on what gets played on the radio? read more
WASHINGTON, D.C.– Artist education, research and advocacy organization Future of Music Coalition (FMC) announces the release of a new report that analyzes New York State radio playlists to determine whether the policy interventions resulting from 2003-2007 payola investigations have had any effect on the amount of independent music played on terrestrial radio. read more
We're super busy on this Friday afternoon, but we wanted to get it in the official FMC record (or at least this here blog) that the Senate voted Thursday evening to confirm Julius Genachowski -- President Barack Obama's nominee to lead the Federal Communications Commission.
Ars Technica: read more
On June 11, 2009, the House Subcommittee for Communications, Technology and the Internet held a hearing on the Local Community Radio Act of 2009. This bill is designed to lift the minimum distance requirements imposed by the Radio Broadcast Preservation Act and allow LPFM stations to exist on “third-adjacent channels,” or channels three clicks away from full-power stations on the dial. Congress imposed this restriction in response to fears that an LPFM’s 100 watt-or-less signal would interfere with a full-power station’s 20,000 watt signal. This is a bit like being worried that a flashlight will steal brightness from an industrial-grade spotlight. read more
Future of Music Coalition (FMC) has conducted an analysis of radio airplay over the past four years to determine whether anything has really changed since April 2007, when the FCC issued consent decrees to the nation?s four largest broadcasters in response to payola allegations. Using playlist data from Mediaguide, calculated the airplay share for five different categories of record labels to determine whether the ratio of major label to non-major label airplay has changed over the past four years. Based on this data, the FMC reported “almost no measurable change” in station playlist composition over the past four years.
Future of Music Coalition fondly remembers the promises of four big radio companies caught in the Spitzer payola trap to increase their broadcast of independently-produced music. But it doesn?t see it happening. […]