FCC to LPFM frequency sharers: You can work it out


Perhaps the FCC was channeling the Beatles; more likely it has bigger fish to fry than to settle a dispute over who gets to broadcast when on a frequency used for LPFM in a Columbus OH frequency share situation.

There were five mutually exclusive applicants for a 102.1 MHz LPFM in Columbus. Simply Living was one of them, operating WCRS-LP. Bexley Public Radio Foundation, operator of WCRX-LP, was another.

The other three included Groveport Madison Local Schools, Capital University and Community Refugee and Immigration Services Inc.

All five agreed to share the frequency, but only Simply Living and Bexley actually managed to get up and running. Although the other applicants were more than happy to turn their share of the station over to the two active licensees, the two have been unable to come to agreement on who gets to broadcast when.

Simply Living has asked the FCC to step in and settle the situation, but the FCC said that would simply reward the stations for walking away from their own responsibility to work it out on their own. The Commission suggested that they figure out an arrangement and submit the proper applications to assign the time slots of the other three applicants to the two surviving licensees.

RBR-TVBR observation: This sounds exactly like parenting when we are confronted with a he-said she-said sibling squabble. We have often instructed our children to resolve the problem peacefully on their own, with the threat that if they fail, they may BOTH get in trouble. We understand the FCC’s reaction to this particular dispute on a visceral level.