What does today's ruling by the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) mean to radio in Central New York? Not much. The easing of ownership restrictions approved by the commission deals primarily with television and newspaper owners.There were some changes in how radio markets are defined in terms of which stations can be included when determining percentage breakdowns by owner in each market. While radio markets the size of Syracuse will probably not be affected, the more restrictive guidelines could apply to cities like Ithaca.
The FCC will use Arbitron's geographic method for determining local radio market boundaries instead of the signal contour method in use now. The new regulations also take into account both commercial and non-commercial stations when calculating ownership percentages.
Click here for the FCC ruling and related documents.