Saturday, July 19, 2008

What some people will try to do...

So, there's a radio station in Michigan. Their license was to expire on October 1, 2004. They never filed for renewal.

So, in June 2006, the FCC sends their owner a letter warning them their license is expired & they aren't authorized to operate. A month later, an agent visits and finds that this station is in fact operating, even though its license expired almost two years ago. A month after that, agents spoke with the station's owner, informing him personally of the unlicensed status of his station.

The owner said he didn't file a renewal because it has to be done electronically and his station doesn't have a computer.

In August 2007, the station is still operating. FCC sends them a Notice of Apparent Liability for $10,000. They respond that they did not "willfully" violate the part of the Communications Act that requires stations to have a license, and that they could not file a renewal application because they don't have a computer. They claim to have filed a request for Special Temporary Authorization to continue operating and, "...since that time, it has assumed that the request would be answered by the FCC."

Uh, yeah.

1. It's 2008. You're in a city of 53,000 people. You can't find an Internet-connected computer???

2. You didn't think to call the FCC (the inspector gave you the number) who would have told you they would consider waivers to the requirement to file electronically?

3. You think asking for special temporary authority automatically gives you that authority?

The fine stands.

Oh, and we should note that as recently as this Monday, the station in question was still operating - without a license.

See the original FCC document.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Considering that the FCC made it
law in 1994 (or was it the mid-
80`s) that a Broadcast station
should also have a telephone and
some now still don`t, who`s
complaining? Besides, the FCC`s
present laws cost USA Broadcast
programmers and stations about 100
jobs a day.