Not only are some of the FCC’s localism proposals — such as mandated 24/7 staffing and further restrictions on main studio location — financially burdensome for broadcasters; such changes actually will limit stations’ abilities to serve their communities.
So argues NAB in a big filing of comments to the commission regarding proposals currently being bruited under the rubric of broadcast localism.
“The commission has no factual or legal basis to turn back the clock to reinstate a myriad of regulations that the agency found ineffective and unnecessary in the less competitive media marketplace of the 1980s,” stated the National Association of Broadcasters.
It noted that many of the proposals “would impair broadcasters’ abilities to serve their local communities by imposing significant costs and diverting resources away from programming and services that directly serve their local markets.”
NAB continued: “Overturning commission precedent on the rules regarding main studio and unattended operation, for example, would saddle many broadcasters with significant, possibly economically devastating, new costs. Small broadcasters and station groups and those in more rural areas, in particular, would be adversely impacted.”
Furthermore, the idea of basing license renewal, at least in part, on obligatory data about the compilation of playlists and airing of particular content raises legal and constitutional concerns, the trade group said.