A lot of things happened last year, but a lot more things that might have happened did not. Here is our take on the most significant non-events of the year. You might call this the woulda-shoulda-coulda lists, except in some cases — like the lack of any significant new indecency fines — the non-event status is good thing. So without further ado, here are 17 things that did not take place:
* Clear Channel did NOT complete its divestitures of hundreds of radio stations and its entire TV division.
* Clear Channel did NOT go private. (Maybe in 2008.)
* Radio broadcasters did not manage to turn around the ever-lengthening trend of flat revenue results; meanwhile, television broadcasters for the most part were not able to avoid riding the downside of the revenue rollercoaster due to the effects of an off-election off-Olympic year despite unusually early presidential primary action.
* The FCC did not strike down the cross-ownership ban across the country, did not liberalize television duopoly rules and did not increase local radio ownership caps.
* FCC Chairman Kevin Martin could not seem to find a single interested party to give unqualified applause to his 12/18/07 media package, which included easing of cross-ownership restrictions in the top 20 Nielsen DMAs and kick-off projects on localism and minority/female/small business ownership.
* Ownership and other issues put into motion by the FCC 12/18/07 remain unresolved as Congress, the Courts and possibly the Bush Administration get set to weigh in.
* Arbitron did NOT launch PPM as ratings currency in New York, which would have been its 3rd market.
* It still have not been determined if MVPDs will have to pass along multicast DTV broadcast channels or not.
* The WGA strike wasn’t resolved.
* New CRB royalty rates kicked in and so far haven’t decimated the internet broadcast industry.
* New CRB royalty rates weren’t overturned. (Coming in 2008?)
* HD Radio did not make broadcasters money. (Coming in 2008?)
* Sirius and XM did NOT win regulatory approval to merge. (Will that happen in 2008?)
* Nexstar and LIN put themselves up for sale, but did NOT succeed in going private.
* The Fairness Doctrine did not return, perhaps because legislation to bring it back was not initiated; meanwhile, legislation to block its return stalled.
* Not a single new significant indecency NAL was issued; meanwhile, the Supreme Court has not announced whether or not it will hear an FCC/DoJ appeal of the FCC’s appellate loss to Fox on fleeting broadcast obscenities.