Ready for some cool legal history on the FCC's indecency policies? Well, maybe not cool, exactly. But definitely interesting.
As we've mentioned before, Future of Music Coalition has issued briefs in important court cases regarding the FCC's "vague and arbitrary" indecency policies, arguing that they have a chilling effect on creation and lead to broadcasters shying away from airing worthwhile content for fear of triggering massive fines. For instance, we've heard that many PBS affiliates were afraid to air the original version of Ken Burns' acclaimed documentary The War, for fear that it would result in a punitive response from the FCC. We believe that artists have a right to free speech and expression and that they actually benefit from exposure to challenging and at times even controversial art.
Like so many other individuals and organizations, Future of Music Coalition is saddened beyond words at the devastation visited upon Haiti by the recent earthquake. Events like the Asian tsunami and Hurricane Katrina make us realize just how precarious our place on this planet is. But it also presents an opportunity for humanity to come together to help alleviate any amount of suffering that we possibly can. read more
Check out this article at Ars Technica about FMC's comments tool that helps musicians and fans tell the FCC how they use the open internet. Besides saying nice things about the tool itself (and noticing that it's not designed to elicit stock, form letter-style answers), the piece quotes R.E.M.'s testimony, which is all about how the open internet makes practically every aspect of communicating with fans easier and cheaper.
Reporter Nate Anderson reserves particular praise for Erin McKeown's submission. "The great virtue of McKeown's three-page comment," Anderson writes, "is the passion that infuses it; this is a working musician who plays 200 gigs a year and is absolutely dependent on the Internet to power her career."
But the real reason we created the comments tool is so YOU can share your own viewpoints with the FCC in their Notice of Proposed Rulemaking on Preserving an Open Internet. The deadline is Jan 14 (tomorrow!) so, if you wanna be part of the official record, you should get cracking.
Achtung, musicians and indie labels! The clock is ticking to tell the FCC how you use the open internet in your lives and careers!
You have an incredible opportunity to assist the FCC in crafting smart policy that will ensure that the internet remains open and accessible to all. This page will tell you everything you need to know about the FCC proceeding. We've even designed a comments tool that will guide you through the process and automatically file with the Commission. If only booking tours were that simple!
You'll be in great company. Acts like R.E.M., Kronos Quartet, Erin McKeown, Franz Nicolay of The Hold Steady and more have already filed comments. Get your inspiration right here!
The comments phase of this proceeding closes on Thursday, January 14, so don't dawdle. And please pass the word on to your peers!
A short while ago we told you about the FCC's Notice of Proposed Rulemaking on net neutrality. You may recall that we were thrilled to see the Commission was taking a proactive steps to ensure that the internet remains open and accessible to all. Even more encouraging was the fact that the FCC would be soliciting comments from stakeholders and the public, which of course includes musicians and fans. read more
Future of Music Coalition is once again curating a number of conversations at the annual Association of Performing Arts Presenters conference in New York City, January 8-12, 2010. Join us for sessions on the issues at the intersection of arts, technology and law; media, copyright and technology; and health insurance for creators.
To attend these sessions you need to be registered for the Arts Presenters conference. Click here for registration details. If you are an artist and would like to attend these sessions only and will not go to the APAP conference, email us at nicole[at]futureofmusic[dot]org read more
The latest issue of SPIN Magazine is a year-end roundup. Among the "best of" lists and what-have-you is an excellent article about musicians and health insurance, which they're calling the "Story of the Year." read more
On December 8, 2009, C. Edwin Baker, who was the Nicholas F. Gallicchio Professor of Law and Communication at the University of Pennsylvania Law School, died suddenly in New York City. Ed was one of our esteemed Advisory Board members and a trusted expert on many critical issues including free speech, communications law and media policy. FMC Board Member — and former Research Director — Peter DiCola has written a few words in memory of Ed. read more
Well, we thought we’d have news about the Local Community Radio Act vote in the full House on Tuesday, but they didn’t get to it until yesterday (Wednesday). We don’t want to keep the suspense going any longer than necessary, so let’s cut to the chase…