Issue 4, February 1999

"Notes From the Crumb Tray": Beat On!

Who says government isn't responsive to the needs of its citizens? After battling the FCC for the last few years, it seems that local low powered radio station Beat Radio (along with its like-minded brethren around the country) has scored a victorious blow for the little guy. The FCC recently issued a Notice For Proposed Rule Making concerning the guidelines for the creation of a Low Power radio service. What this means to you and me is that a comment period about these proposed guidelines will ensue for awhile, during which people offer their take on them and then they'll eventually issue the final rules. What it rally means is that Low Powered radio stations like Beat will now find a place on your radio dial. Beat Radio began in Minneapolis in July 1996, broadcasting dance music on its 20 watts of power. The FCC didn't take too kindly to this and seized Beat Radio's transmitter, antennae and other equipment. Sort of like at the end of Pump Up the Volume when the FCC is chasing down Christian Slater and Samantha Mathis. In this case, Beat Radio and the FCC are still locked in a legal battle royale. But this new rule proposal represents a major policy change for the FCC, who did so despite the extreme opposition by the Big Boys of Broadcasting, who are somehow threatened by a little 20 watt station. Keep tuned for updates and keep a preset on your car radio free. As they say, you can't keep a good Beat down.

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