Broadcasting Industry News from the Minnesota Broadcasters Association

Broadcasting industry news from the Minnesota Broadcasters Association.

What Broadcasters Do Best

With the myriad of media options available today, there are some who view traditional broadcasters as quaintly anachronistic. The FCC is poised to repackage spectrum surrendered by TV stations for wireless providers. Even broadcasting’s role during emergencies is coming under question as emergency managers increase their reliance on Wireless Emergency Alerting and other platforms to deliver critical public safety messages.

But broadcasters and their loyal audiences know something that some government officials apparently do not. When disaster strikes, local radio and TV stations are there to serve their communities. Time and again, broadcasters come through under the most adverse conditions and stay on the air while wireless providers go silent. Anyone with a battery-operated radio or TV has access to critical emergency messages when the power goes out. Broadcasters are truly always there, always on.

Next week, radio and TV stations have an opportunity to remind listeners and viewers—and public officials—of their ability to inform during times of crisis. Severe Weather Awareness Week is being observed in Minnesota from April 17-21. On Thursday, April 20, the National Weather Service will issue a simulated Tornado Warning using the live TOR EAS Code at 1:45 p.m. and 6:45 p.m. Most municipalities will also activate their outdoor warning sirens at these times. In the event of actual severe weather, the mock Tornado Warning will be issued the following day (April 21) at the same times.

The MBA encourages you to actively participate in this important public service exercise. Ensure that your EAS devices are set to receive the live TOR Code. Prepare your listeners and viewers by mentioning the test in newscasts and PSAs. Radio stations can use audio from our interview with National Weather Service Warning Coordination Meteorologist Todd Krause that aired recently on Access Minnesota. Urge your audience to think about what they and their families would do in the event of a tornado or other severe weather emergency.

If all Minnesota broadcasters participate in this drill and educate their listeners and viewers about severe weather safety, it will send a powerful message that local radio and TV is the most reliable source of lifesaving information during emergencies.

Thank you for committing your resources to make this test a success.

Jim du Bois, MBA President/CEO

MBA Members Receive Discount On Conclave Registration

The Conclave is set for July 26th-28th at the Doubletree by Hilton-Park Place in St. Louis Park. MBA members receive a $50 discount on each registration. Register here and enter the code STA42 when prompted.

Tornado Live Code EAS Test Set For April 20, 2017

April 17-21 is Severe Weather Awareness Week in Minnesota. A live TOR code EAS test is scheduled for April 20, 2017 at 1:45 pm and again at 6:45 pm (back-up date is April 21 at the same times if severe weather threatens on the original date). Warning sirens will sound at both times in many locations. Stations are encouraged to air the test messages if scheduling permits. The Minnesota EAS Team and the MBA secured a waiver from the FCC to permit use of the live TOR EAS code. One of the conditions for securing the waiver requires us “to conduct as wide-ranging a public information campaign as is practicable about the planned testing events.” Please feel free to use audio from our Access Minnesota interview with National Weather Service Warning Coordination Meteorologist Todd Krause as you see fit.

FCC Announces Auction Results And Sets TV Repack Deadlines

According to the FCC, there were 175 TV stations that sold spectrum in the auction for just over $10 billion in total. Of these 175, 30 are moving to a VHF channel and 133 have indicated that they will be channel sharing with a station that did not sell spectrum in the auction. That suggests only twelve stations nationwide sold their spectrum with the intent to go dark permanently.

Technology And A Global Pool Of Intel Has Given A Rise To The News Genre

Technological advances have given consumers access to all kinds of immediate content—from streaming the latest sitcom on a smartphone to logging on and using a game console to play a first-person shooter against a rival on the other side of the country.

Sponsored Content: Minnesota News, Sports And Weather From The Go News Network

Looking for quick updates with the latest Minnesota news, sports and weather? Contact Joe Nelson by email,, for more info. Listen to the streaming Go News Network channel right here.

Inside The Agencies: For Carat, Radio Is About Innovation

Carat is now testing out weather-trigger campaigns for retail clients using the Weather Alpha service as well as iHeartMedia’s SoundPoint automated advertising platform, according to Jennifer Hungerbuhler, Denstu Aegis Network’s executive VP and managing director of local video and audio investment, who oversees big radio ad deals for Dentsu’s Carat unit.

Radio Profits From Being Local Biz’s Digital Partner

Radio stations are versatile. Beyond on-air, event and web platforms, stations are also finding plenty of profits from their role as digital marketing experts for local businesses. How much money can be had that way? One expert said it can turn your bottom line from single-digit to double-digit growth.

Study: Small Businesses To Up Marketing Budgets In Big Numbers

A healthy increase in marketing and ad spending is expected from small business owners, with 49% saying they plan to raise their budgets in 2017. A new study from B2B review firm Clutch reports that among those that intend to boost their marketing numbers, about one-third (36%) plan an increase of between 11%-30%.

The Troubles At The American Mall Are Coming To A Boil

A fresh round of distress signals sounded in the retail industry this week, as another big-name chain announced hundreds of new store closings and still others moved aggressively to recalibrate their businesses for the online shopping stampede.

Former FCC Mass Media Bureau Chief Roy Stewart Passes Away

Many of you who have attended NAB and state broadcasters’ association events over the years came to know Roy Stewart, an FCC employee from 1965 until his retirement in 2009 who served as Mass Media Bureau Chief and Senior Deputy Chief of the Media Bureau as well as in other roles. Roy passed away on April 10 at age 78 following a brief illness. Roy was a dedicated public servant who was well regarded by many broadcasters. Details on Roy’s services can be found here.

Access Minnesota

The MBA can help you with your community issues programming. Access Minnesota is a high-quality, weekly 30-minute public affairs radio show that focuses on issues of importance to Minnesotans. This program is available as a free service to MBA member stations. The show currently airs on 43 stations throughout Minnesota. Visit for more information. (Please note that the Access Minnesota website is currently being redesigned.) A monthly 30-minute TV version of Access Minnesota is also available. You can view previous episodes here.

Please contact Linda Lasere ( if you wish to air Access Minnesota.

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