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May 7, 2014
Dennis Wharton
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NAB Statement on Proposed Legislation Regarding Retransmission Consent and Radio Royalties

WASHINGTON, DC -- In response to the introduction of legislation today by Reps. Marsha Blackburn (R-TN) and Anna Eshoo (D-CA) that would block a broadcast television station from receiving retransmission consent payments if its parent company also owns a radio station that does not pay a performance royalty, the following statement can be attributed to NAB Executive Vice President of Communications Dennis Wharton:

"NAB is concerned that this legislation would devalue local broadcasting. Every day across America, local radio and TV provides a positive, competitive balance to national pay radio and TV giants. Local stations offer news, entertainment, and emergency warnings that make the difference between life and death. NAB will respectfully oppose this legislation."

In addition, reporters might find of interest that broadcasters pay approximately $500 million a year to compensate songwriters for music we play on the radio; radio stations also pay millions a year to the record labels and recording artists for music that we stream on digital platforms.

Two other points: The promotional value of free and local radio airplay to artists and record labels is between $1.5 billion and $2.4 billion annually, according to James Dertouzos, a former PhD Stanford economist.

Free and local radio remains by far the #1 promotional platform for exposing new music, according to Nielsen.

About NAB
The National Association of Broadcasters is the premier advocacy association for America's broadcasters. NAB advances radio and television interests in legislative, regulatory and public affairs. Through advocacy, education and innovation, NAB enables broadcasters to best serve their communities, strengthen their businesses and seize new opportunities in the digital age. Learn more at

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