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Black Radio Doesn't Deserve Our Help (482 hits)

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"On May 13, more than 200 protesters gathered outside the Detroit offices of House Judiciary Chairman and longtime Michigan representative John Conyers, who sponsored the controversial Performance Rights Act (HR 848). Known as the "performance tax," the bill would require that radio stations pay yearly license fees for the right to play music on the air.

The protest was sponsored by Radio One, the largest black-owned radio company in the country, with over 50 stations in nearly 20 markets and an increasing share of the so-called urban market via TV One, Giant magazine and the signature syndicated drive-time program, The Tom Joyner Morning Show. Radio One's "Save Black Radio" campaign responds to fears that the new law would hurt already struggling black-owned radio stations.

What's not clear to me is why we should be crying any tears for Radio One. It is BET without the rump-shaking videos, and it's nearly as destructive in warping the musical and communal values that have historically made radio an institution in black communities.

This is the very same industry that has effectively shut out independent artists, put out music and lyrics that degrade women and warp the values of children. Why should we run to black radio's defense when it has failed black communities so terribly?" WRITTEN BY MARK ANTHONY NEAL

Read the Full Article at The Root.com.

Roger Madison
Posted By: Roger E Madison Jr
Friday, May 29th 2009 at 2:24PM
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From what I have read, this is a double-edged sword. It appears to be in support of artists, and forces radio stations to "pay to play." On the other hand, this move will put a lot of small Black-owned radio stations out of business. Only the big networks can afford to "pay to play."

The issue of service to the community has long ago been swept away. There is no local Black news; advertisers don't spend money with small Black stations; and listeners don't tune out the garbage.

Kathy Hughes and Radio One is the only large Black Player in the game, and they are struggling financially. The move in Chicago to get Tom Joyner off the air was a move by Clear Channel to manipulate the Black radio owners and the audience into a corner.

At the end of the day,the question is this: "Where is the quality content in Black Radio?"

If there is none, then we haven't lost much if they go under, have we? That is one way to look at it. Or put another way, if we don't demand quality content, we deserve what we get.

Friday, May 29th 2009 at 5:51PM
Roger E Madison Jr
This is not the "payola" of days of old. The advent of Satellite radio has ushered in a new form of accountbility, since these stations are not "broadcast" but are accessed by subscription. Therefore, the playlists and traffic can be monitored. As a result, the artists can charge royalty fees to be inclued in playlists. The best playlists get the most subscribers. Just recently, satellite radio was on life support due to low subscriptions.

This measure introduced by Rep. Conyers seeks to obtain royalties from "broadcast radio stations" by charging them all a fee. The fees would fund the royalties. However, the fees become one last expense that puts a nail into the coffin of small stations with shaky financing. So, a lot of Black-owned radio stations will disproportionately be put out of business.

As they say in some circles, "It's not personal, it's business."

But it doesn't have to play out this way. If listeners sit on the sidelines, they will get the scraps from this food fight. It's all about money.

Friday, May 29th 2009 at 9:28PM
Roger E Madison Jr
Thank you Roger for this 'other side of the story' as it is too often left out of the picture.We have such a hard time here in Northern Ca. getting them any way.

I do hope that there is going to be a license fight then maybe the Fox media networks will not be the only public air wave producers of this demeaning, and degrading "entertainment" coming into our homes will be looked at while they are at this(smile)

So far I have seen Fox cable news go before Congress on C-Span twice and this was under the Bush Administration.....
Thursday, April 10th 2014 at 6:47PM
Whow, Roger you know how my mind goes to the Pay to Play of the Tv programs back when and the records to be played 'if paid for' on the public air waves....Hopefully this is not what you mean????????

I would love to get Black radio talk programs. Iven on my husbnd's Serus radio we can not get these programs. You can get them if you are in Southern Ca. We are closer to the state of Oregon than L.A (smile)
Thursday, April 10th 2014 at 6:47PM
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