Friday, July 15, 2005

NAB letter for XM

Just yesterday, Eddie Fritts from the NAB sent a letter to national politicians telling them to peak in on the practice of satellite radio's XM and Sirius. Read the letter and you'll see that he is worried about their creeping into the local market by devoting some of their national channels to local weather and traffic updates. Now, XM has recently purchased spectrum from a wireless company that, in effect is the spectrum directly adjacent to the current XM transmissions. The guess is that XM will use this to add even more local possibilities to their programming mix.

And yet, while the NAB is worried (and I think they should be) it is still not sinking in at the local level. I remember when I had a guest speak come to my programming class from the Emmis stations in Indy. This person was a great guest, but when asked if they were worried about the impact of Stern's departure from broadcasting to satellite, they said no. It could be that this person was just stating the company line heard from Emmis owner. And, while you can't deny Smulyan's point that podcasting (and cell phones, and mp3 players, and audible, and. . . ) are going to significantly threaten broadcast radio. . . the lack of willingness to acknowledge the threat of satellite is surprising to me.

Sunset in Eastern Washington is beautiful.

Hopefully more tomorrow.

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