Confronting the Corporate Media

In less than two months, the National Association of Broadcasters will hold its annual radio convention in Seattle, Washington. Media activists are mobilizing this year, much like they did two years ago in San Francisco, to confront the conference and strategize ways of reclaiming the airwaves from corporate domination.

From the looks of things, it looks like it will be a lot of fun. Heaven knows, another showdown with the NAB is long overdue.

Visit reclaimthemedia.org to get the full scoop.

A Slow Demise?

While the Federal Communications Commission continues to slowly move ahead with plans to roll out new low power FM (LPFM) stations, its Chairman is sending mixed messages about the fledgling service’s future.

So far, 25 LPFM applicants have received construction permits for their stations. These permits allow the applicants to build their actual facilities and prepare for broadcasting, but they still require an official license from the FCC before they can flip the switch on regular programming.

The FCC will also complete its first round of application-processing in June, when it accepts LPFM station proposals from the 20 remaining U.S. states and territories who haven’t had a chance to file yet. Read More

Inside the Smoke-Filled Room

November’s elections are just around the corner, and as the hype on the campaign trail intensifies, Congress is still “at work” in Washington, D.C.

The U.S. Senate is hammering out the federal budget; it approves it in pieces, as separate spending bills that lay out just how much each federal government agency gets to spend over the next fiscal year.

Unfortunately, budget bills not only get loaded down with “pork” (extraneous money seen as gifts Congressfolk get for their specific states or districts), they’re also notorious vehicles for politicians to ram laws through Congress that wouldn’t survive the normal approval procedure (like committee meetings, public hearings, etc.). Read More

Trading Shots

After thousands of people shook up the National Association of Broadcasters by protesting at its annual radio convention, held in San Francisco last month, spirits were riding high within the newly-created Media Democracy movement.

But after the first open attack on their business and egos, the American radio industry did not take long to counter. It has been a busy past couple of weeks.

On Capitol Hill, the forces of corporate largesse have convinced more than a majority of the Senate to back efforts to cripple the FCC’s new low power FM radio service. Read More