House Panel Considers “Future of Audio”

A House subcommittee this week held a hearing on the “Future of Audio.”  Noting the advance of HD radio, portable audio files, and the Internet, a committee memo noted, “This is not our parents’ audio market.” 

In attempt to explore how communications and consumer electronics advances are affecting audio distribution and consumption, the Communications & Technology Subcommittee of the House Energy & Commerce Committee delved into a number of key audio areas including the broadcast radio ownership caps, FM chips in mobile phones, LPFM stations, and performance royalties. 

Of note, NRB will continue to vigorously oppose a performance tax on broadcasters.  Not only would this be an undue strain on already stretched budgets, but, among other problems, it rests on the flawed assumption that value for the airplay of recordings is only a one-way street to broadcasters.  In addition, NRB’s Board of Directors approved a Resolution this year calling for expanded availability of broadcast radio services in mobile phones.

  • Watch this House hearing and read official accompanying materials. 
  • Read NRB President Frank Wright’s 2009 letter to Congress on Performance Tax efforts.

 By Aaron Mercer, Vice President Government Relations