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Broadcast Law Blog

Category Archives: AM Radio

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TV Music Licensing Committee Settles Antitrust Action with SESAC over Music Licensing Rates and Terms – Radio Watches and Wonders if It Can Get a Similar Deal

Posted in AM Radio, Broadcast Performance Royalty, FM Radio, Intellectual Property, Music Rights, Television
SESAC is the one major performing rights organization whose rates have not, until now, been subject to judicial review as part of an antitrust consent decree.  Perhaps because of that fact, broadcast stations have often complained about the rates they charge for the music that they license, as there is currently no cap on what … Continue Reading

FCC Denies “Tell City Waiver” to Move Translator to Distant Non-Adjacent Channel to Rebroadcast AM Station

Posted in AM Radio, FM Translators and LPFM
In a case that has been watched by many AM licensees and debated at a number of broadcast conferences in the last few years, the FCC on Friday denied the “Tell City waiver,” by which the licensee of an AM station in Indiana sought to buy an FM translator in Kentucky and move it to Indiana, … Continue Reading

FCC Regulatory Fees Due On or Before September 23 – What’s New for This Year’s Fees?

Posted in AM Radio, FCC Fees, FM Radio, Low Power Television/Class A TV, Television
Right as everyone was preparing to leave town for the long weekend, the FCC issued its Report and Order on the regulatory fees for 2014, and also issued a Public Notice setting the deadline for paying those fees as 11:59 PM on September 23.  For broadcasters, the FCC also issued a Mass Media Fee Filing … Continue Reading

New Conditions on Mattoon Waivers for FM Translators Used for AM Stations – Mandatory Rebroadcast of AM on the Translator for 4 Years

Posted in AM Radio, FM Translators and LPFM
It’s come to our attention that the FCC’s Media Bureau has recently been granting applications for changes in the transmitter sites of FM translators to be used for AM stations with conditions on the subsequent use of that translator.  The conditions seem to be added to the construction permits granted to applicants who filed an … Continue Reading

FCC Seeks Comments on Expanding Online Public File Obligations to Radio and to Cable and Satellite Television Operators

Posted in AM Radio, Cable Carriage, FM Radio, General FCC, Political Broadcasting, Public Interest Obligations/Localism, Website Issues
The FCC has asked for public comment on whether it should extend the online public inspection file obligation to radio, and also whether it should adopt an online public file obligation for cable television and satellite television operators.  The latter proposal originates in a recent petition by the Sunlight Foundation and two other public interest … Continue Reading

More LPFM Applications for Broadcasters to Review to Assess Potential Interference Issues, and New Petition to Deny Deadlines

Posted in AM Radio, FM Radio, FM Translators and LPFM, Noncommercial Broadcasting
We wrote last week about the FCC’s determination of which applicants are to be preferred in several groups of mutually exclusive applications for new Low Power FM stations.  We warned full-power FM broadcasters to review the preferred applicants as broadcasters have 30 days from last week’s public notice to file petitions to deny against such … Continue Reading

Another Round of EEO Audits of Radio Stations Announced by the FCC

Posted in AM Radio, EEO Compliance/Diversity, FM Radio
The FCC yesterday issued a Public Notice announcing a new round of EEO audits.  Letters to about 180 radio stations went out asking for evidence of their compliance with the FCC’s EEO rules.  The Commission has pledged to audit 5% of all broadcast stations and cable systems each year to assure their compliance with the … Continue Reading

FCC Application Fees Going Up By 8% – Effective June 6, 2014

Posted in AM Radio, FCC Fees, FM Radio, FM Translators and LPFM, Low Power Television/Class A TV, Television
On June 6, FCC application fees are going up by 8%.  The new fees were published in the Federal Register yesterday, here.  This Federal Register publication sets out all of the new fees.  To make sure that your applications are processed on a timely basis, be sure to pay the proper higher fees, starting on … Continue Reading

2014 Broadcasters’ Legal Calendar – and March FCC Regulatory Dates of Importance

Posted in AM Radio, EEO Compliance/Diversity, General FCC, License Renewal, Multiple Ownership Rules
March is one of those few months on the FCC’s regulatory calendar where there are few routine filing deadlines.  While stations that filed their renewal applications in February need to continue to run their post-filing announcements, and those that are going to file renewals in April (the end of the renewal cycle for radio stations) should … Continue Reading

January Regulatory Dates for Broadcasters and Webcasters – Children’s Television Reports, Quarterly Issues Programs List, Webcaster Elections and Minimum Fees, the Return of Lowest Unit Rates and More!

Posted in AM Radio, Children's Programming and Advertising, General FCC, Internet Radio, Internet Video, Music Rights, Noncommercial Broadcasting, On Line Media, Political Broadcasting, Programming Regulations, Public Interest Obligations/Localism
A new month in a new year, and a number of new regulatory dates are upon us for broadcasters – and important dates for webcasters also fall in this month.  So now that the holidays are quickly becoming just a foggy memory, it is time to sharply focus on those regulatory obligations that you have … Continue Reading

What’s Up in Washington For Broadcasters in 2014? — Part 1, FCC Issues

Posted in AM Radio, Cable Carriage, Digital Television, FM Radio, FM Translators and LPFM, General FCC, Incentive Auctions/Broadband Report, Indecency, Internet Video, Multiple Ownership Rules, Noncommercial Broadcasting, Political Broadcasting, Programming Regulations, Public Interest Obligations/Localism, Television, Uncategorized
It is the beginning of another year – and a time to look ahead to look ahead at what broadcasters should expect from Washington in the coming year.  With so many issues on the table, we’ll divide the issues into two parts – talking about FCC issues today, and issues from Capitol Hill and elsewhere … Continue Reading

FCC Proposals for AM Radio Part 2 – Comment Deadline Dates, Site Moves and Unaddressed Questions

Posted in AM Radio, Digital Radio, FM Translators and LPFM
A few weeks ago, we wrote about the most immediate part of the FCC’s plan for the revitalization of AM radio – providing more FM translators for AM stations.  As the FCC has just announced the deadline dates for the filing of public comments on the reform proposals, setting the comment deadline for January 21 … Continue Reading

While Our Blog Was Getting A Makeover, Did You See Our Stories on the New FCC Chairman, Foreign Ownership of Broadcast Stations, AM Revitalization, Orson Welles and the Hoax Rule and More?

Posted in Advertising Issues, AM Radio, FM Translators and LPFM, General FCC, Incentive Auctions/Broadband Report, Low Power Television/Class A TV, Television
There have been many Washington developments for broadcasters in the last week – and while it was all occurring, our Blog was undergoing a makeover, so some of the articles that we published in the last week may have been missed.  Perhaps the biggest news was the confirmation and swearing in of the new FCC … Continue Reading

FCC Proposals For AM Improvements – Part 1 – A Restricted FM Translator Window and an End to the Mattoon Waiver?

Posted in AM Radio, FM Translators and LPFM, Uncategorized
The FCC’s proposals for aiding AM radio have been released in a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking – one of the last actions for broadcasters under Acting FCC Chairman Mignon Clyburn (see our article here on the leftover broadcast issues with which her successor as chairman, Tom Wheeler, will have to deal).  The proposals for revitalizing … Continue Reading

AM Improvement Proposals Coming from the FCC – What is Coming and How Quickly?

Posted in AM Radio, FM Translators and LPFM
Last week, acting FCC Chairwoman Mignon Clyburn delivered a speech at the NAB Radio Show, which talked about new technology and old, and her affection for AM radio.  In the most newsworthy aspect of the speech, the Chairwoman announced that the FCC is currently considering a draft Notice of Proposed Rulemaking looking to improve the service delivered … Continue Reading

FCC Sets New Rules for Determining When New Tower Construction Triggers Financial Responsibility for Disrupting AM Station Antenna Patterns

Posted in AM Radio, Tower Issues
The rules for determining when construction of a new tower may cause a distortion of the pattern of a nearby AM station, and when the party building the new tower has a financial obligation to remedy any interference caused, were clarified by the Commission in an order released late last week. The order makes clear that all … Continue Reading

The Care and Feeding of the Broadcaster’s Public Inspection File – An FCC Reminder and a Compliance Seminar

Posted in AM Radio, EEO Compliance/Diversity, FM Radio, General FCC, On Line Media, Political Broadcasting, Public Interest Obligations/Localism, Television
The care and feeding of the broadcaster’s public file is a hot topic once again. For many years, the public file was often overlooked, being visited most often by competing broadcasters looking for dirt on their cross-town rivals, or by college journalism students assigned a project by their professor requiring the review of local stations’ files. But, … Continue Reading

Reconsideration of FCC’s Rural Radio Decision – Making It Difficult to Move a Radio Station from a Rural to an Urban Area

Posted in AM Radio, FM Radio, Public Interest Obligations/Localism
Moving a station from a rural area into a more urban one was a fairly common occurrence until the recent recession – when the value of new "move-in" stations in many larger markets essentially collapsed. Soon after the collapse, the FCC stepped in to stop what the marketplace had already severely slowed, by effectively prohibiting the practice … Continue Reading

FCC Refuses to Grant Leniency on Construction of New Radio Station After Construction Permit Deadline – Cancels Permit

Posted in AM Radio
When building a new radio station, the FCC gives broadcasters three years in which to construct.  The deadline for construction can only be extended for limited reasons (referred to as circumstances that justify "tolling" of the permit) - for a short term equal to the period that an Act of God (e.g. a hurricane, blizzard or flood that … Continue Reading

Broadcast Station Reminders: License Renewals, Pre- and Post-filing Announcements, EEO Public File Reports, and Noncommercial Ownership Reports due for Select States

Posted in AM Radio, EEO Compliance/Diversity, FM Radio, General FCC, License Renewal
Just a reminder to broadcast stations in certain states of several upcoming February obligations.  First up, February 1st is the deadline for Radio Stations in Arkansas, Louisiana, and Mississippi to file their FCC Form 303-S license renewal applications seeking a renewal of their broadcast licenses.  (See our earlier license renewal advisory for more information about the FCC’s license … Continue Reading