If the FCC does not establish clear rules on net neutrality without “fast lane” exemptions, which lane will music tech innovators be allowed to travel in? “There is also some question about how the so-called ‘public internet’ - described in today’s Verizon-Google conference call - would continue to grow and develop alongside the ‘additional online services’ hinted at in the proposal,” says Casey Rae-Hunter, Communications Director and Policy Strategist for Future of Music Coalition. “Today’s events serve to further highlight the need for an appropriate regulatory framework that would clarify what is and isn’t acceptable online.
Google and YouTube would apparently be limited to the ‘public’ internet, and mobile broadband falls outside the purview of the proposal. Opposing groups immediately questioned whether the private internet would start to crowd an underfunded, ignored public internet. And what does this mean for artists? Comments are just trickling in, though Future of Music Coalition policy strategist Casey Rae-Hunter pointed to the need for greater regulatory backbone and definition - not a handshake between private companies. “There is some question about how the so-called ‘public internet’ would continue to grow and develop alongside the ‘additional online services’ hinted at in the proposal,” Rae-Hunter offered.
The FUTURE OF MUSIC COALITION criticized CLEAR CHANNEL's earlier comments promoting the salutory effects of consolidation on format diversity, saying that "increased consolidation in the commercial radio sector runs counter to the FCC's goals of competition, localism and diversity on the public airwaves. As the Commission undertakes a review of its current media ownership rules, we urge it to consider radio’s monolithic transformation following the elimination of the national ownership rules and the relaxation of local ownership rules under the 1996 Telecommunications Act."
Dr. Anderson also talks about one of the biggest things that plague musicians today: health care. “Being a touring musician, you put your health on the line. From eating unhealthy food daily, to working under unsafe conditions, to the activity of the physical performance—not to mention drugs and alcohol. If a musician gets sick, he has very few options. Thirty-three percent of musicians don’t have health insurance. Compare that to 17 percent of the population. That number is alarming.” He touts the Future of Music Coalition with making strides in this area. […] “They have on their website, HINT (Health Insurance Navigation Tool), which offers advice on health care options in their state.
While broadcasters seek to either maintain or relax the local radio ownership limits, citing greater competition for audio delivery and the dire economy, public interests groups told the commission just the opposite this week….The Future of Music Coalition says its studies show that radio has suffered from a lack of format diversity since passage of the 1996 Telecom Act; it also argues that counting format names is an inadequate measure for format “diversity” because “just 15 formats make up 76 percent of commercial radio programming.” FMC proposes a “fixing radio” agenda with prevention of further consolidation at the top of the list.
The Columbus Music Co-op, which provides uninsured central Ohio musicians with money to help defray unexpected medical bills, was conceived in 2005 by Jess Faller and Erin Moore….”We can relate to how it feels,” said Faller, 31, who spent eight months without a job in 2008 after her position was eliminated at Huntington National Bank.
Undersoring her point: An April survey of 1,451 musicians conducted by the Washington advocacy group Future of Music Coalition found that a third of the respondents lacked health insurance - perhaps because of high costs, a lack of knowledge or a touring schedule that prohibits a full-time job with benefits.
A new Future Of Music Coalition study “Taking the Pulse” found that, of the 1,451 musicians who responded, 33% said they do not have health insurance. This is nearly twice the national average of 17% uninsured, as estimated by the Kaiser Family Foundation. (pdf of full report here.)
During the push for health care reform, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi askedMSNBC host Rachel Maddow to visualize “an economy where people could be an artist or a photographer or a writer without worrying about keeping their day job in order to have health insurance.” But how, exactly, that might happen was unclear. Just days earlier, Pelosi had said, “We have to pass the bill so that you can find out what is in it.” read more
Earlier this week, the Future of Music Coalition approached the tricky subject of musician health care, a quickly-changing area. At its DC Policy Day symposium on Tuesday, the group assembled a trio of knowledgeable health care professionals dedicated to helping artists. Complete coverage of that session can be found here, with video and live notes here. read more