Category Archives: August 2017

Snyder Urged to reject Microsoft White Space Proposal

The MAB reached out to Gov. Rick Snyder and members of the Michigan Congressional Delegation urging the lawmakers to reject Microsoft’s attempts to secure free TV spectrum for a nationwide channel (aka ‘white space’) to use for unlicensed devices. Microsoft is asserting that it is urgent that the FCC reserve a vacant UHF white space channel in every market nationwide before the repacking is finalized.

The National Association of Broadcasters (NAB) also filed comments with the FCC stating that the Microsoft proposal to grant access to 18 MHz of TV spectrum for unlicensed use, should be denied as it will cause direct and immediate harm to translators and low power television stations displaced by the spectrum repack following the incentive auction.

In even a best-case repacking scenario, the capacity simply does not exist to successfully accommodate all of these broadcast television station moves. By design, the incentive auction is already shrinking the broadcast television band and there will not be enough spectrum to keep all broadcast television translators and LPTV stations on the air. This disproportionately harms diverse, niche and rural broadcast viewers that are served by translators and LPTVs.

Broadcasters are not alone in opposing this move. A number of rural and agricultural organizations, including National Assoc. of Wheat Growers, National Assoc. of State Departments of Agriculture, National Black Growers Council, National Farmers Union, and Rural & Agriculture Council of America wrote a letter to the FCC Commissioner Ajit Pai in opposition to the Microsoft proposal.  “Our members rely heavily on local broadcast stations to stay up to date on the important issues in our communities and the rest of the country,” the letter stated. “When local broadcast stations go dark, rural communities are deprived of a vital source of information that is essential for managing our day-to-day lives.”

Early-Bird Discounts Extended Through Friday

MAB members have one last chance to save on registration to this year’s Advocacy Conference and Awards Banquet. Early-Bird discounts have been extended through 11:45 p.m. on Friday, August 4.

The afternoon Advocacy Conference and MAB Annual Business Meeting are free to members while tickets for the evening Awards Reception and Banquet are $140 and benefit the MAB Foundation, which awards more than $26,000 in scholarships each year.

Group discount room rates are still available for event participants.

Click here to learn more, reserve your spot and join us August 22 at Crystal Mountain Resort in Thompsonville.

National Lawmakers will be Part of Awards Banquet

Sen. Debbie Stabenow (left) and Congresswomen Debbie Dingell (right).

The MAB is thrilled to welcome two Washington D.C. lawmakers home to Michigan during the August 22 Awards Banquet at Crystal Mountain Resort.

Sen. Debbie Stabenow (D-MI) will be honored with the MAB’s Lifetime of Distinguished Public Service Award.

Congresswoman Debbie Dingell (D-12) will be a special guest at this year’s Banquet  to present the MAB Lifetime Achievement Award to 2017 honoree Marla Drutz, vice president and general manager at WDIV-TV (Detroit).

Other 2017 Awards Banquet honorees will include Michigan Broadcasting Hall of Fame inductees Rob David of Handyman Productions, Erik Smith of WXYZ-TV (Detroit), and Radio Reader Dick Estell of WKAR (East Lansing), as well as Legacy Award recipient Linda Lee of WYCD-FM. Both Estell and Lee will be honored posthumously.

CMU Public Radio’s John Sheffler and Detroit Public Television supporter William H. Smith will be  honored with MAPB Public Media Impact Awards.

The annual MAB Awards Banquet is a fundraiser for the MAB Foundation, which awards more than $26,000 in scholarships to deserving broadcasting students each year.

Awards Banquet tickets are $140 per person and include a fabulous reception, host bar, dinner and afterglow. Sixty dollars of each ticket price may be deducted as a charitable donation to benefit the MAB Foundation. Click here to reserve your tickets and be a part of the celebration.

EAS Equipment Checklist

This originally appeared on the SBE-EAS Listserve.

To help broadcasters better prepare for the 2017 National Periodic Test of the Emergency Alert System (EAS), here is a list of issues that occurred during the 2016 national test that EAS participants might want to check:

1. Check that Text-to-Speech, if audio file is not available, is
enabled for CAP messages on EAS equipment.

a) Although optional in the FCC rules, TTS really should be mandatory.  If the NPT audio file can’t be retrieved, without TTS enabled, a “silent” message will be broadcast. TTS may sound ugly, but it is better than silence.
b). This varies by EAS manufacturer and sometimes in an obscure part of the configuration.

2. Listen to on-air EAS equipment audio output levels, don’t just rely on equipment logs. EAS audio must replace the program audio completely.

a) All program audio channels – right, left, 5.1 surround, secondary audio program, etc.
b) Don’t duck the program audio under the EAS audio – replace the program audio with EAS.
c) EAS audio loudness should be similar to normal program audio levels – not substantially louder or quieter.
d) Verify audio clock rate is configured consistently on EAS and
transmission chain equipment.

3. Check middleware programming and downstream connections (mostly television and cable systems). View the on-air video output of the EAS equipment, don’t just rely on equipment logs.

a) Middleware includes control systems, switching systems, RF systems and distribution elements.
b) The entire EAS message from first EAS header data burst until after the last EOM data burst is included.
c) Video crawl must display at least one complete crawl, even if the audio message is shorter or longer. The crawl should be readable and understandable – not extremely fast or slow.

4. Satellite program syndicators and satellite fed stations should understand which one is responsible for EAS as part of the program transmission chain.

a) NPR squawk and Premiere Networks supply national EAS
(PEP) on a distinct audio feed separate from normal programming. The EAS source channel may be connected to one of the EAS equipment audio input channels. The 2017 NPT will not be transmitted by NPR squawk or Premiere Networks; however, a real EAN could be.
b) Program syndicators should inform their affiliates if their satellite feed is pre-EAS (without EAS data bursts) or post-EAS (may include EAS data bursts).
c) Satellite affiliates with local EAS equipment should ask for a pre-EAS satellite source (without EAS data bursts)
d) Translator stations and hub-feed satellite stations without local EAS equipment must have a post-EAS (including EAS data bursts) source.

5. Not new, but still an issue. Check the system time on equipment, both EAS and automation systems.

FEMA: 2016 IPAWS EAS National Test Report
FCC: Report: September 28, 2016 Nationwide EAS Test

 

FCC Sets August 28 Deadline for Updates to ERTS Reporting System

David Oxenford - ColorBy: David Oxenford, Wilkinson Barker Knauer, LLP
www.broadcastlawblog.com

We wrote earlier about the upcoming EAS Nationwide Test and the need for broadcasters to make sure that their EAS equipment is operating in compliance with all FCC rules. The FCC itself has now released its own Public Notice detailing the many things that broadcasters need to check at their facilities before the upcoming test, including the need to update their information in the ERTS EAS reporting system by August 28. The FCC also issued a new EAS Handbook detailing broadcaster’s EAS obligations.

The Public Notice notes that the EAS test will focus on the IPAWS internet-based system through which the common alerting protocol (“CAPS”) alert is sent – a system that was mandated a few years ago as an additional way for alerts to be conveyed to stations to supplement the traditional “daisy-chain” of alerts being passed from one broadcast station to another (see our articles here, here and here). The internet-based system will allow both English and Spanish versions of the Nationwide alert to be transmitted and will also provide text of the message that can be converted to a video crawl on TV screens.

The Public Notice provides a list of potential EAS issues that each station should review to make sure that their EAS systems are operating in compliance with the rules. The Notice also sets August 28, 2017 as the deadline for all stations to complete their “2017 ERTS Form One” setting out information about each station’s EAS decoders, encoders or combined units. ERTS is the system that reports on the results of the EAS tests. Test results will need to be filed on Form Two in ERTS on September 27 before midnight, with more detailed information about the results of the test to be submitted in a Form Three by November 13, 2017. The FCC warns stations to start looking at these forms now – particularly the one due on August 28 – to make sure that your information is updated and accurate and you are ready for the September test. As we suggested in our earlier post, this public notice makes clear that now is the time for all stations to review their EAS equipment, and the ERTS Forms, to get ready for the Nationwide Test.

David Oxenford is MAB’s Washington Legal Counsel and provides members with answers to their legal questions with the MAB Legal Hotline.  Access information here. (Members only access).

There are no additional costs for the call; the advice is free as part of your membership.

How to Help Millennials Overcome Failure

Editor’s Note: The views and opinions of this article do not necessarily reflect those of the MAB. Contact the MAB for information on the MAB’s official editorial policy.

Ryan Jenkins

By: Ryan Jenkins
Next Generation Speaker / Inc.com Columnist

Millennials’ altitude in their career and your organization is determined by their attitude towards failure.

According to a Babson College survey, 41 percent of 25-34-year-old Millennials cited “fear of failure” as their biggest roadblock to starting a business, up from 24 percent in 2001. It would seem that Millennials are searching for safer paths towards success.

Millennials are interested in anticipating obstacles rather than stumbling through them. They will leverage today’s abundant information, tools, and resources to minimize risk.

Although Millennials have a complicated relationship with risk. They’ve grown up in a connected world where failure is more public and permanent. One wrong move and the Internet can immortalize one’s failure. In addition, success is prioritized over failure on social media. Millennials don’t see the missteps of their friends on social media, which gives the false illusion that they are the only one experiencing failure.

Millennials also perceive risk differently from previous generations. Some would claim that climbing the corporate ladder is safe, Millennials would call that risky. Some would claim quitting a six-figure job to start a green smoothie business is risky, Millennials would call that safe because they are taking control.

Many Millennials grew up over-protected by their hovering helicopter parents who would deflect anything that appeared to be a failure. Now Millennials are entering the workplace where some are experiencing failure for the very first time, and it’s up to managers to help them thrive through it.

Millennials’ altitude in their career and your organization is determined by their attitude towards failure.

Ultimately people have two choices when it to comes to reacting to failure: fail backward or fail forward. It’s a choice. Leaders are in a unique position to help Millennials choose to fail forward and begin to view failure as deferred success.

  • Display Empathy
    Authority is given but influence is earned. The quickest way to earn influence with Millennials is to listen. Listen and display empathy by stating “I see you’re really disappointed, I know you really wanted to do better on this project.” Or share your own struggles and stories of failure.
  • Instill Belief
    An authentic belief in the Millennial employee’s abilities will prompt them to take more risks and be bolder in their actions. Highlight the strengths, skills, and attributes that made you hire them. Cultivate the belief that self-image is not dictated by external events. Millennials must understand that their self-worth is not based on their performance.
  • Encourage Ownership
    People are tempted to blame others for their failure. Don’t tolerate Millennials pointing fingers and taking a victim mentality. Help them understand that they rob themselves of the learning and growth that’s inside failure when they don’t own their failure.
  • Emphasize the Journey
    Help them to view failure as a toll booth instead of a roadblock. With a tollbooth, a price must be paid to move forward. Prepare the Millennial for the journey, don’t prepare the journey for the Millennial.
  • Facilitate Failure
    Create environments where failing is easy and encouraged. Remove any fear or consequences of failure and communicate that failure isn’t fatal or final.
  • Contextualize Failure
    Offer context around the failure. Help Millennials to see the failure as temporary. Putting the failure into perspective will help them see failure as a momentary event, not a symptom of a lifelong epidemic.
  • Challenge Them
    Challenging Millennials with tough assignments provides opportunities for failure and communicates that you believe in their ability to rise to the challenge. Resilience is a muscle that must be intentionally developed and practiced.
  • Stress Strengths
    Failure can be minimized when people are operating in areas of their strengths. Help Millennials to be wary of laboring too long in areas of their weakness. Spending too much time overcompensating for weaknesses will increase the likelihood of continued failure.
  • Coach vs Intervene
    Resist the urge to intervene to assist a struggling Millennial. Allow the Millennial to marinate in the failure but coach them to come up with a creative solution. Intervening only robs the Millennial of the opportunities to learn problem-solving, develop resilience, and cultivate confidence to take on new challenges.
  • Affirm Effort
    Affirm the variables that the Millennial can control such as effort, empathy, or strategy. Good effort, whether or not they failed, should be rewarded or recognized (Read this for more on recognition best practices for Millennials.) Failing to try or put forth effort is unacceptable failure.
  • Move On
    Have Millennials pause to unpack the failure but help them to understand that the past cannot be altered. Spending too long thinking about missteps can lessen self-confidence, stall progress, and divert focus. Coach Millennials to quickly forget the negative emotions of the setback and encourage them to press forward resiliently.

Benjamin Franklin said it best, “The things that hurt, instruct.” Failure is a teacher. Trial and error (emphasis on the error) is what forges stronger character. Failure-free individuals grow into emotionally fragile professionals who are susceptible to anxiety and lack the grit to succeed.

(This is 1 of the 47 strategies Ryan shares in his new book, The Millennial Manual: The Complete How-To Guide to Manage, Develop, and Engage Millennials at Work.)

This article was originally posted on Ryan’s Inc.com column, Next Generation Insights.

Reprinted with permission.

The Robinson Report: No Small Parts

Editor’s Note: The views and opinions of this article do not necessarily reflect those of the MAB. Contact the MAB for information on the MAB’s official editorial policy.

KevinRobBy: Kevin Robinson
Robinson Media

If you’re in the small club to see the TOP of the Statue of Liberty, you’ll find immaculate detail that rivals all other parts of Lady Liberty.

So, why is this a – thing?

In September 1875, there were no flying machines.

Yet French sculptor Frédéric Auguste Bartholdi put as much time and detail into a place that he knew would never be viewed by the public – as all other small parts of his budding figure.

Audio products are the same.

The often cast-aside “small parts” are the things that take a brand from good – to great!

How a brand is “processed” – makes a difference.

Although many don’t even consider it a “part.”

Every piece of imaging – every song – each break has individual nuances.

How they blend together is an art – often lost on those who have only created sound by machine.

Jingle packages used to have cuts that had clear transitions between differing tempos and keys.

Not simply “spots” – as many are produced today.

That’s why, when commenting on the details of “scoring” an audio brand at a recent conference, the words hit me below the belt.

“I don’t think the listener notices, you know, things like that,” she said.

Whoa.

True story –after installing a new automation system at a station, it began to crash with regularity.

The engineers discovered the talent was “moving” too many parts between elements.

To create a superior sound – scored to perfection.

After hearing that story, a well-respected group head noted “That’s why you’re #1”.

When mastering sonics the greats know there are no small parts.

You hear it – your thought bubble, when you do, is something like:

“I wouldn’t have done it that way…”

Listen to your small parts. How are they playing together?

Don’t hear the difference in the small parts – the atmospherics?

I know a guy.

Kevin Robinson is a record-setting and award-winning programmer. His brands consistently perform in the Top 3 of the target – often times as the list leader. In his 35 years of radio, he’s successfully programmed or consulted nearly every English language radio brand. Known largely as a trusted talent coach, he’s the only personality mentor who’s coached three different morning shows on three different stations in the same major market to the #1 position. His efforts have been recognized by Radio & Records, NAB’s Marconi, Radio Ink, and has coached CMA, ACM and Marconi winning talent. Kevin was a featured speaker at the 2017 Great Lakes Broadcasting Conference (GLBC) in Lansing.  He lives in St. Louis with his wife of 30 years, Monica. Reach Kevin at (314) 882-2148 or robinsonradio@aol.com.

28 Stations Participate in D.R.A.G. Radio Day 2017

Left to right: Ron Smerigan, WJR-AM Director of Marketing & Promotions, Denise Weston, MAB Director of Membership and Services, Jacquelen Timm, MAB Foundation Manager and Development Director, and Rob David, President/General Manager for Handyman Productions, LLC at D.R.A.G. Radio Day 2017.

A big “thank you” and shout out to the Detroit Radio Advertising Group (D.R.A.G.) for inviting the MAB to be a part of Radio Day 2017!

There were lots of familiar faces and new ones among the 28 stations  that participated in the July 28 event at the The Eastern at Eastern Market in Detroit.

The MAB greatly appreciates its partnership with D.RA.G.!  Thank you!