MMTC asks for PRA confab invite


Patrick Leahy (D-VT) and John Conyers (D-MI) will have to book the House of Representatives floor or perhaps the Washington Wizards/Washington Capitals home arena the Verizon Center to accommodate all who want in on the royalty chat scheduled for 11/17/09.

The Minority Media and Telecommunications Council has respectfully asked to be invited to the proceeding.

In one of the most simple and direct letters you will ever see in wordy and convoluted Washington, MMTC wrote, “We understand that you are convening a discussion regarding the Performance Rights Act on November 17th with the interested parties, including the National Association of Broadcasters and the musicFIRST coalition. As this legislation will have a significant impact on minority radio broadcasters, we would ask that the Minority Media Telecommunications Council and Spanish Broadcasters Association also be included in these conversations.”

Reps. Gene Green (D-TX) and Mike Conaway (R-TX) have also noted that there are nearly 300 legislators in Capitol Hill who oppose PRA and who would like to be represented at the meeting.

MMTC has produced a study which shows that as many as a third of currently operating minority broadcast stations could be shoved into bankruptcy if PRA was to become law.

RBR-TVBR observation: At the most recent Senate hearing on PRA, Leahy was confronted with MMTC’s assessment of the potential damage PRA may cause to minority broadcasters, and he countered by mentioning other minority groups like NAACP that support PRA. Giving equal or greater weight to a generalist organization with no expertise in broadcasting is nonsensical.

You almost get the impression that Leahy isn’t interested in finding the correct answer, he’s simply interested in finding people who support his own preconceived notions, and that he might wave around the “expert testimony” of the Association of Minority Pipe Fitters if they would support his position.