NAB's Newberry, Beasley Push FM Chips In Letters To D.C. Politicos
September 20, 2010 at 2:37 PM (PT)
Two NAB leaders wrote HOUSE and SENATE leaders for both the Judiciary and the Commerce committees TODAY to make their case for putting FM chips in mobile devices. The letters were signed by NAB Joint Board Chair and COMMONWEALTH BROADCASTING Pres./CEO STEVE NEWBERRY and NAB Radio Board Chair and BEASLEY BROADCAST GROUP EVP/CFO CAROLINE BEASLEY.
NEWBERRY and BEASLEY cited radio's 12+ audience of 239 million Americans as a reason for radio to provide a "crucial lifeline" during times of emergency and crises. "Americans ought not be denied access to such a pivotal lifeline service," they wrote.
They used polls that found considerable interest for FM-capable cell phones in AMERICA and worldwide as further ammunition for their cause. "Despite such global demand, much of the U.S. cell phone market remains founded upon exclusive contracts between consumer electronics manufacturers and mobile phone carriers, and consumers are being denied access to radio's free services on many mobile phone devices for competitive reasons," the letter noted. "Cell phone providers apparently would rather reap the revenue of data-intensive, fee-based streaming apps than offer consumers a free and local alternative."
"In the end, this is an issue of consumer access," they continued. "Americans deserve better choices than what is being offered by gatekeeper mobile service providers. The demonstrated demand for radio-capable cell phones, coupled with local radio's role as a lifeline service during times of crisis, are considerations we hope you will take into account as this debate continues."