Just in case you are not on the CMA mailing list, You should be
interested in this action item ---
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TAKE URGENT ACTION ON LOW POWER FM FCC RADIO RULES
DEADLINE MONDAY AUGUST 29TH
CHICAGO MEDIA ACTION ALERT -- AUGUST 27TH, 2011
Area groups including the Chicago Independent Radio Project and the
Evanston Public Library (in cooperation with the Evanston Community
Media Center)are seriously looking into obtaining LPFMradio licenses
from the FCC next year. But large religious networks and others are
aiming to silence local voices with canned programming from afar by
acquiring the new LPFM "translator" or "repeater" frequencies coming to
our cities. Take action below. Our Cities! Our Airwaves! -- Chicago
Stand Up for Your City's Airwaves
Brandy Doyle, August 26, 2011 (SaveTheNews.org / Free Press)
It's not often that the FCC asks us how to do its job. But Monday is the
deadline for the public to respond <http://bit.ly/LCRadio> to a pretty
exciting question: "Should we set aside channels for community radio in
big and medium-sized cities?"You don't hear questions like that every
day. In fact, media activists fought for more than a decade to put this
idea on the table.
A bipartisan grassroots coalition that included the Prometheus Radio
Project and Free Press worked to pass the Local Community Radio Act
("LCRA"), signed into law in January.
This historic law directs the FCC to expand Low Power FM (LPFM) radio,
giving big and medium-sized cities their first chance at community radio
in decades. LPFMs are small non-commercial stations, licensed only to
local nonprofit organizations, schools, churches and government agencies.
But to expand LPFM the FCC must first clear out a backlog of thousands
of pending applications for translators
transmitters that repeat programming from other stations. Translators
are supposed to help local stations reach listeners in hilly terrain
—and some do — but many are run by giant networks that use their
translators to cheaply build media empires with no local content. The
business model these networks use relies on repeating the same signal on
hundreds, sometimes thousands, of translators.
In most cities, the dial is so crowded with corporate stations there's
not much room left. Without FCC action now, the few remaining spots will
be flooded by translators before anyone can even apply for community
radio licenses.Thanks to the LCRA, however, the FCC is required to
ensure that spectrum is available for low power radio. To comply with
the law, the FCC must figure out how to dismiss some of the thousands of
pending translator applications to save room for LPFM radio.
The FCC's plan <http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LSkCooZqMb0> is to
dismiss these translator applications in cities where there isn't room
for at least a few community radio stations, setting aside the few
remaining spots on the public airwaves for us, the public. This will
ensure that channels are available in big and medium-sized cities, which
haven't had new low power community radio stations in more than 30 years.
They've asked for public comment on this plan <http://bit.ly/LCRadio> by
Monday, Aug. 29. It's a rare opportunity not only to tell the FCC how to
do its job, but to remind the agency of who it works for.
We know the FCC will hear from translator applicants and big networks
opposing the plan. With loud enough support for community radio from the
rest of us, we just might get heard over the corporate static.
We can have radio that gives us more accountability journalism and less
celebrity gossip. Community, not commercials. We can have radio that's
truly independent, from the artists and music labels it showcases to the
small businesses that underwrite it to the pundits and perspectives it
But we have to ask for it <http://bit.ly/LCRadio>.
* * * * *
Chicago Media Action meets on the second
and fourth Tuesday of the month at 7:30PM.
All are welcome. Contact us at: firstname.lastname@example.org
This is an email from Chicago Media Action, a Chicago activist group
devoted to media issues.
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