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Chriss Scherer Scherer has been the editor of Radio magazine since 1997. His experience in radio includes work as chief engineer at stations in Cleveland (WMMS-FM, WHK-AM, WZJM-FM, WJMO-AM...more

Archive for February 19th, 2010

Opposing the Performance Fee

It seems the promos the NAB has provided to radio stations about eliminating terrestrial radio’s exemption from paying the music performance fee are being heard. My non-broadcast coworkers and friends are all asking me about the tax (as the NAB calls it) being proposed for radio stations.

First, I clarify the term “tax.” While an assessed fee can technically be called a tax, most people understand a tax to be a fee levied by the government to subsidize the government’s actions. The issue at hand is for radio stations to pay a royalty that it so far has been exempt from paying.

But listeners only hear the tax portion. Good for the NAB; the message is at least being heard.

However, it’s not being understood. It’s raising awareness, but it’s not answering questions. And as far as I can tell, no one is going to the website the NAB created to see what it’s about.

Seems like it’s time for phase two of the message.

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