The Community Broadcasters Association is getting out its megaphone in Washington this Wednesday – hoping to demonstrate its positive contribution to diversity of ownership, while at the same time demonstrating its plight. “The absence of MVPD access, the lack of a comprehensive and economically viable plan for a conversion to digital operations, and the recently intensified economic hardship faced by these stations, resulting primarily from their inability to reach all TV viewers in their markets, has proven without a doubt, that the existing legal and regulatory system under which these stations operate is no longer viable.”
Many low power stations specialize in minority oriented niche programming, not to mention other niche specialties, and are often offer programming uniquely tailored to their local communities. CBA says that 40% of all LPTVs and Class As have minorities in their ownership groups, and over half have females.
The group is holding a press conference 2/25/09 at the offices of law firm Fletcher, Heald & Hildreth in Arlington VA, a close-in suburb of Washington DC.
RBR/TVBR observation: Recently exited FCC Chairman Kevin Martin had a plan to give must-carry status to Class A stations, which fell through due to lack of immediate support from any other commissioner. It’ll be interesting to see if the issue will emerge again under a Democratic chair.