NAB Files Comments Suppporting Moving Posting Of Contest Rules Online
February 18, 2015 at 12:07 PM (PT)
The NAB has filed comments in the FCC's contest rules docket supporting modernization of the regulations to allow online posting of the rules rather than mandated airings of the information.
The comments say, "The Commission’s proposal to update its contest rules accurately reflects how today’s consumers access information. Listeners and viewers will benefit from online disclosure of the material terms of licensee-conducted contests, which will largely replace the current practice of fleeting and rapidly communicated on-air announcements. Broadcasters will be able to better serve their listeners and viewers, providing more meaningful opportunities for them to access and understand the disclosed information. Moreover, in light of the fact that the Commission applies its contest rules only to over-the-air radio and television broadcasters – and not to contests conducted by satellite or Internet radio, cable and satellite television or over commercial wireless networks – adoption of the FCC’s proposal will be an important step towards bringing broadcasters into regulatory parity with their competitors."
"Paving the way for online distribution of information also will help the FCC meet the goals of its contest rules," the NAB adds. "As the record indicates, contest rules can often be lengthy and detailed. The current rules that de facto require a rapid recitation of the material terms on-air can make contest terms difficult for consumers to comprehend. Allowing broadcasters to inform listeners and viewers by posting contest information online will permit consumers to carefully read and better understand the material terms of contests." The NAB notes that the current rules will translate easily to online form but adds, "NAB does not mean to suggest here that the broadcast contest rules as a whole are still necessary to serve the public interest. Rather, if the Commission believes it necessary to retain the contest rules, then there is no reason to change the substance of most of those rules in the context of online disclosures." And the NAB is asking the Commission not to add specific prescriptions for things like placement of the rules in a particular place on a station website or the duration the rules must be available.