Airwaves safe for Seadogs


And for Boston Red Sox, too. Saga Communications outlet WBAE-AM in Portland ME found its license under attack on grounds that it deviated from its Standards “Music of Your Life” programming from time to time in order to air broadcasts of the minor league baseball team Portland Seadogs, as well as serving its corner of the Red Sox Nation with Sox games.

This did not sit well with Ms. Lora Leland and Ms. Anne Zevich, who complained that “…‘Music of Your Life’ 24-7-365.  ‘All music all the time’ was their promise when the Station started.” They argued that the unwelcome baseball interruptions warranted denial of a license renewal. The Saga GM testified that to the best of his knowledge, the station never made any 24-7-365 claim, and suggested that the complainants must have directed their objections directly to MOYL, since he had no record of any calls or complaints from them.

The FCC noted that the complainants did not contend that the station had broken any laws, rules or regs; that the station had a record of serving the public interest; and that it has scant authority to intervene in programming matters. The complaint was denied and the license renewal granted.

RBR/TVBR observation: This could easily have happened to a television or a radio station and either way, it’s good to get affirmation for the FCC from time to time that it has no business poking its nose into programming decisions. But it must be good news for MOYL, too. These are some loyal fans, who cannot tolerate a format break that whittles down their supply of Standard fare to a mere 21 hours a day during the summer.