How has the Telecommunications Act of 1996 affected the radio industry? Be sure to include your thoughts on the pros and cons of deregulation, consolidation and radio network programming from both a consumer and provider perspective.
Congress really put a number on the American people when they put the Telecommunications Act of 1996 together. In my opinion I do not see as many “pros” as I do for “cons”. This act allowed conglomerates to overhaul radio. It seems as if Clear Channel has swallowed every radio station and has become the leader in what they want you to hear. I do not think that is good for anyone. Since they own the radio stations than that means that they own the programming. Since they own the programming they run the programming. That means that there is less radio talent needed in smaller markets. I have seen the effects locally on radio in Tampa. I have seen the parent companies out of Los Angeles lay off people in Tampa because there is no need to keep the people in Tampa if they are controlling everything in Los Angeles. I am personally sick of it. It seems like I hear the same thing on every radio station. All of that would be a con for me and possibly you, but that in return is a pro for the large conglomerates/providers.