Just when you thought they couldn't go any lower, our friends at the National Association of Broadcasters (NAB) have found yet another way to hide their real agenda.
We watch this stuff closely because the NAB has such a long track record of dishonesty on AM/FM performance rights. Among their greatest hits are false claims that an artist's paycheck for AM/FM performance royalties would be a "tax" despite the fact that there would be no payments made to the government. Tax Expert Grover Norquist couldn't stomach that one.
Lately, the NAB has been making desperate efforts to mislead Members of Congress into believing that an AM/FM performance right would be a threat to local radio and college radio — even though performance rights proposals have capped royalties for small and other non-commercial stations between $100 and $500 a year. Guessing "Clear Channel Freedom Act" didn't poll too well?
Now, they are making a grotesque attempt to undermine FCC transparency rules, which require stations to post ad buy information online. Apparently, the NAB wants to limit access to these reports. They want to shut out the reporters, watchdog organizations and experts that depend on this information to hold politicians accountable. Embarrassed about where they get their money? Worried about their windfall profits being exposed to the public? Opposed to democracy in general?
In a move that would make even the shadiest used car dealers blush, they dropped this ugly bombshell during Sunshine Week. I guess the corporate radio executives fighting to keep their special government-granted windfall truly have no shame.
Here at musicFIRST we make no bones about who we are and what we are fighting for.
Unfortunately, not so much for our friends at the National Association of Small and Local Broadcasters and College Radio and Hurricane Responders*
*Don't look at the Clear Channel and Cumulus Radio behind the curtain.