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Exec Briefing: TV License Renewals

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As 2013 comes to a close, TAB would hope its members, partners and other industry professionals enjoyed a safe and happy holiday season. As we reflect on the past year for the industry, we would like to provide the readers of TABulletin a look at the most accessed articles from the year. Our regular publication will resume next Wednesday, Jan. 8.

Be careful about using the term 'Super Bowl' in station advertising
Michael Schneider, TAB Newsroom & Legal Services Director
Jan. 25, 2013: Sunday, Feb. 3, is just around the corner and broadcasters are considering advertising opportunities tied to the biggest football game of the year. But as David Oxenford, an attorney with TAB Associate member law firm Wilkinson Bauer Knaurer cautions, broadcasters need to be extremely careful in using the term "Super Bowl" in any advertising by a sponsor who has not been authorized to use that term. (TAB Members Only.)
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EEO reports are critical in 2013, 2014 station license renewals
Michael Schneider, TAB Newsroom & Legal Services Director
Feb. 5, 2013: At license renewal time, radio and TV stations have to submit their last two annual EEO public file reports to the FCC. As a result, the report Texas broadcasters have to complete this March will be part of Texas radio stations' 2013 license renewal and Texas TV stations' 2014 license renewal. So it's important to get that part of the renewal process right. (TAB members only.)
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Indecency, telemarketing, white spaces and more
Fletcher, Heald & Hildreth
November 2013: TAB Associate Member Fletcher, Heald and Hildreth provides an update on the most recent news and analysis on developments in communications law. This month's topics include indecency, foreign control of broadcast licenses, fake EAS signals and more.
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Why is Texas dead last in voter turnout?
-Dismal civic participation could dampen 2014 election expectations

Oscar Rodriguez, TAB President
Oct. 28, 2013: When it comes to voting in local, state and national elections, Texans' boast that "everything is bigger in Texas" is an exercise in self-delusion. The Annette Straus Institute for Civic Life earlier this year recently produced the Texas Civic Health Index, the first nonpartisan, statewide evaluation of political and community engagement in Texas.
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FCC names 34 Texas stations in latest round of EEO audits
- TAB offers members compliance help

Oscar Rodriguez, TAB President
July 1, 2013: The FCC last week announced that 34 Texas stations will be audited to assess their compliance with the commission's Equal Employment Opportunity rules. Stations are randomly selected by the FCC, which audits about five percent of all radio and television stations annually; they have 30 days to respond to the FCC with the requested information. "It is critically important that stations on the audit list respond promptly to the FCC in order to avoid potential penalties," said TAB President Oscar Rodriguez.
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Legislative session delivers big wins for broadcasters
Oscar Rodriguez, TAB President
May 28, 2013: Texas broadcasters scored several key victories in this year's regular legislative session which ended Monday – just minutes before Gov. Rick Perry called a special session to resolve the state's ongoing battle over maps for House, Senate and Congressional districts. "This was one of the most successful sessions ever for broadcasters and our newspaper colleagues," said TAB President Oscar Rodriguez. "Lawmakers passed a number of bills critically important to our ability to do business while also addressing some major tax and infrastructure concerns that are vital to our state's continued economic well-being."(TAB members only.)
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The FCC's online political public file rule: The law of unintended consequences
Gregg P. Skall, Womble Carlyle Sandridge & Rice LLP
March 25, 2013: In recent months, a number of media buyers have had funds stolen from their bank accounts. Even after repeatedly opening and closing accounts to stop the theft, tens of thousands of dollars have been diverted to accounts across the country and across the world. An investigation revealed that the information that enables this theft is coming from television stations FCC on-line political files.
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Pay-TV operators push new bills to tilt playing field in their favor
Oscar Rodriguez, TAB President
Legislation that would upend the retransmission consent process and make other drastic changes to federal TV carriage laws was laid out last week by Rep. Steve Scalise, R-La., at the urging of Time Warner Cable, DISH, DirecTV and other pay-TV distributors. (TAB Members Only)

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Texas TV stations take note: FCC detective work leads to renewal fines
CommLawCenter
If there had been any doubt that the Video Division of the FCC's Media Bureau would check a television station's online public inspection file to confirm the truthfulness of certifications made by the licensee in a pending license renewal application, that doubt has been eliminated.

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You don't have to spend a fortune to sound like a million
Mark Margulies, BENMARadio
Imagine flying an airline that proudly proclaims, "Our flight attendants will also fly the plane. It helps keep our costs down." The very same people who would say "Pass-a-dena" to this option are more than happy to sit down at budget time and cut creative personnel who write and produce radio spots.

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Should the entire TV band be repurposed?
CommLawCenter
Feb. 7, 2013: The engineers who worked heroically to push broadcasting across the digital threshold had barely caught up on their sleep before agitation for more change began to erupt. The National Broadband Plan concluded that the amount of over-the-air viewing doesn't justify the number of broadcast stations, and that the FCC could use incentive auctions to repack broadcasting into a smaller band of spectrum. Now incentive auctions are the law.
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RIAA fighting TAB's pre-1972 sound recordings bill
-Texas House memorializes Ann Arnold

Oscar Rodriguez, TAB President
March 6, 2013: The Recording Industry Association of America is fighting TAB's effort in the Texas Legislature to clarify that a 40-year old law prohibiting illegal copying or "bootlegging" of recordings made before 1972 doesn't apply to broadcasts of such songs. (TAB members only.)
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Colby Horton, Vice President of Publishing, 469.420.2601
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