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NAB, Emmis: FCC Failed to Justify Market Definition Change

NAB, Emmis: FCC Failed to Justify Market Definition Change

NAB and Emmis say the FCC drastically tightened local radio ownership restrictions when the commission voted to redefine radio markets June 2.
In their reply comments submitted to federal court, NAB and Emmis state, “The commission’s failure to justify its switch in methodologies is patently inadequate.”
The agency must show the new definition is better than the contour overlap method and has failed to assess the practical impact of the new definition, NAB and Emmis argue. The new definition uses Arbitron’s Radio Metros in rated markets. The agency is developing a way to define markets in unrated markets.
The FCC voted to switch radio market definitions because it felt the old contour overlap method sometime gave a skewed image of which stations were in a market by including far away signals in the count.
The new media ownership rules are blocked from going into effect pending the court case. The reply comments have been filed with the U.S. Court of Appeals in Philadelphia. Oral arguments are slated for next Monday, Jan. 12.