FROM APPALACHIA TO OREGON: HOW A FEDERAL COMMUNICATIONS COMMISSION ADMONISHMENT AGAINST A NORTH CAROLINA RADIO STATION AFFECTS NONCOMMERCIAL RADIO BROADCASTERS IN EUGENE, OREGON
Gould, Richard E.
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Gould, Richard E.
In December 2001, the Federal Communications Commission admonished public radio station WNCW-FM of Spindale, North Carolina. The FCC’s action, in part, addressed how the station both promoted and sponsored a for-profit musical event. In the aftermath of this decision, National Public Radio, along with two other organizations, filed an appeal with the Commission. NPR et al. reasoned that “the decision interferes with stations’ ability to partner with their local communities –to conduct film festivals, book fairs, speaker literary series and the like– unnecessarily discouraging stations from participating in events that have merit for the station and public benefit” (FCC DA 01-2831, p. 11). Although the FCC overturned parts of this decision, most of it is still intact. Clearly, this action has negative implications for partnerships between public radio stations and local arts organizations. This research examines the decision’s impact upon alliances between public radio outlets and arts organizations in Eugene, Oregon. This study reviews pertinent literature and interprets information gleaned from an open-ended questionnaire sent to an Oregon public radio professional, and an in-depth interview with an officer of the National Federation of Community Broadcasters. While the results are far from conclusive, the subsequent document provides a critical perspective of the Spindale Decision’s potential impact on partnerships between Eugene, Oregon, public radio stations and local arts enterprises.
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