Dennis & Callahan criticized for "election postponed" joke

Laurence Glavin
Wed Nov 5 14:35:02 EST 2008

>----- Original Message -----
>From: "Garrett Wollman" 
>To: "Sid Schweiger" 
>Cc: "BostonRadio Mailing List" 
>Subject: RE: Dennis & Callahan criticized for "election postponed" joke
>Date: Wed, 5 Nov 2008 14:00:39 

> The public does not own those frequencies,

>Yes it does; that is the entire basis of the FCC's regulation; the
>broadcast spectrum -- all of it -- is a commons, belonging to the
>public as a whole. Licensees receive only a right to use it; they do
>not have any legal entitlement to, much less ownership of, spectrum
>beyond that given them by the public through the FCC. (My libertarian
>friends would like to change that, but it hasn't happened yet.)


Here's a "thought experiment" (one that has meandered through my febrile
cerebellum many times after a few Sam Adamses):
Can you imagine how different radio (and TV too) would be if at the dawn of Federal 
Regulation of radio, the government said you COULDN'T SELL A RADIO LICENSE?
Just the equipment, the towers and the land on which they are sited?  If,
after a few years, a licensee just "wanted to get out of the business", 
he or she would just walk  away and the FCC would entertain applications from
new entities.  In a few years many radio licenses may be of little worth
(it just happened in Oak Ridge, TN) anyway, and even some broadcast TV licenses
could easily  be turned in (channel 62?).

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