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NAB Asks Court to Overturn New Radio Market Definition

NAB Asks Court to Overturn New Radio Market Definition

We told readers recently NAB intended to argue against the FCC’s new radio market definition in court. Now, the trade group has filed its argument in a federal appeals court in Philadelphia.
NAB is asking the court to overturn the FCC’s new local radio market definition, an approach that would use Arbitron Radio Metros.
The new definition is one of several new media ownership rules passed by the commission in June and now blocked pending resolution of court action.
NAB prefers retaining the contour overlap method of determining what stations are really in a market.
In a 68-page brief filed in the court in Philadelphia in the case of Prometheus Radio Project et al vs. the FCC, NAB wrote that the FCC “seeks to maintain substantial restrictions on co-ownership in local radio and television markets in the teeth of the commission’s own findings regarding the substantial benefits to be had from consolidation in those markets, as well as clear congressional policies in favor of co-ownership.”
The commission’s order, the NAB stated, “is thus a model of self-contradiction, and cannot be sustained.”
During debate and subsequent passage of the Telecom Act, Congress decided to leave untouched the method for determing how a local radio market is defined.
NAB says changing that definition now goes against what Congress intended and “repeals” lawmakers decision to expand the number of local radio stations that may be owned by a group. NAB also argues that the FCC decision is “arbitrary and capricious.”