The Federal Trade Commission rightly concluded in its report Broadband Connectivity Competition Policy that the broadband Internet market needs greater competition. About 96 percent of the broadband market is currently controlled by just two entities: the cable or phone company. In many markets, customers only have one type of ISP to choose from.
Washington, D.C.— The Federal Trade Commission rightly concluded in its report Broadband Connectivity Competition Policy [PDF] that the broadband Internet market needs greater competition.read more
It works for beanie babies and baseball cards, why not for chunks of the broadcast spectrum? Google has proposed the FCC set up a real-time auction system for part of the broadcast TV spectrum that will likely go on sale in 2009 as UHF stations (channels 51-69) vacate traditional broadcasting frequencies for digital broadcasting. The change over is mandated by law.
The spectrum real estate will be particularly valuable to companies wanting to set up new wireless broadband networks. read more
The open internet is about choice, freedom of expression and access to information. Yet there are some corporations that want to change the basic structure of the web as we know it.
Certain telecommunications companies would like to charge content providers higher fees for the faster loading of their sites, which could alter the way we access the web. The result would be an Internet where those companies that couldn’t afford to — or didn’t want to — pay this toll would be relegated the slow lane. Independent and developing musicians could lose an ever-important connection to their fans, while listeners might find their access to the web’s varied, exciting and legal musical offerings severely compromised. read more
Interesting development in the case of AT&T, Sprint, Verizon and Qwest vs. FreeConference.Com, which we reported on last month (see below). FreeConference says Qwest and Cingular have stopped blocking their calls after an angry outpouring from customers.
FreeConference is a web-based service that allows users to make conference calls with a single long distance call. The telecoms began blocking FreeConference claiming the service was pulling a quick one by exploiting a loophole in telecommunications law. They said multiple people were never intended to be connected on one line. FreeConference officials said what they were doing was perfectly legal, but the telecoms were actually worried about all the business they were losing to the upstart. read more
There is an interesting bit of news from Consumer Affairs this week that should sound eerily familiar to anyone concerned about net neutrality. AT&T, Sprint, Cingular, and Qwest have begun blocking subscribers’ access to FreeConference.com, a web-based service that offers conference calls for the price of a single long distance call. read more
On January 16, 2007, FMC filed reply comments in the FCC’s quandrennial media ownership proceeding that questioned the arguments for further deregulation presented primarily by the NAB and Clear Channel in their comments. FMC also submitted our December 2006 report False Premises, False Promises: A History of Ownership Consolidation in the Radio Industry in the record.
In January 2002, Minot, North Dakota, became a symbol of what’s wrong with media consolidation. One night a train derailed, resulting in a chemical spill, and Minot’s emergency-response authorities had difficulty getting their message on the air. Clear Channel, the country’s largest owner of radio stations, owns 6 of the 9 stations in Minot. read more
A Quantitative History of Ownership Consolidation in the Radio Industry
Peter DiCola, Research Director, Future of Music Coalition
Wednesday, December 13, 2006
On December 13, 2006, FMC publicly released False Premises, False Promises – a report documenting the effects of radio station ownership consolidation on musicians and the public. Data in the report shows that station ownership consolidation at the national and local levels has led to fewer choices in radio programming and harmed the listening public and those working in the music and media industries, including DJs, programmers and musicians.
False Premises, False Promises is a quantitative history of ownership consolidation in the radio industry over the past decade, studying the impact of the Telecommunications Act of 1996 and accompanying FCC regulations.
This report is a quantitative history of ownership consolidation in the radio industry over the past decade, studying the impact of the Telecommunications Act of 1996 and accompanying FCC regulations.