Thursday, February 8, 2018

February 8 Radio History

➦In 1922...President Warren G. Harding had a radio installed in the White House.  Later in the month he held the first of his Radio Conferences to seek legislative changes to help the fledgling medium.

➦In 1924...the first coast-to-coast radio hookup took place for a speech by General John Joseph Carty from Chicago.

➦In 1929...KOY-AM, Phoenix, Arizona, began broadcasting. KOY was the first radio station in the state of Arizona, signing on in 1921 as Amateur Radio station 6BBH on 360 meters (833 kHz). Earl Neilsen was the holder of the 6BBH callsign (there were no country prefixes for hams prior to 1928). At that time, broadcasting by ham radio operators was legal.

In 1922, the station received its broadcast license, under the Neilsen Radio & Sporting Goods Company business name, with the callsign KFCB. While the KFCB call letters were sequentially assigned, the station adopted the slogan "Kind Friends Come Back" to match the callsign.

A Phoenix teenager and radio enthusiast named Barry Goldwater was one of the new station's first employees.

When the AM broadcast band was opened in 1923 by the Department of Commerce, KFCB moved around the dial, as did many stations at the time. It was on 1260, 1230, 1310, and 1390 before moving to its long-time home of 550 kHz in 1941. KFCB became KOY on February 8, 1929.  Today the station is owned by iHeaertMedia and is airing a talk format.

➦In 1960...The U.S. House of Representatives Special Subcommittee on Legislative Oversight opened hearings on disc jockey "payola" amid allegations of money and gifts illegally being given to secure airplay or TV appearances.

The Subcommittee called many famous radio DJs and rock artists -- most notably Alan Freed, Dick Clark, Bobby Darin, and Les Paul -- to defend themselves against allegations of illegal money and gifts given to secure airplay or television appearances.

➦In 1978...U.S. Senate deliberations on the Panama Canal Treaties were aired on radio - making it the first time such deliberations had been broadcast over that medium.

➦In Marvin Miller died at age 71 after a heart attack.  He was best known as the Signal Oil announcer on CBS Radio’s memorable series The Whistler, and as Michael Anthony, the man who passed out a weekly cheque on CBS-TV’s hit series The Millionaire in the late 1950’s.

➦In 1994...Barry Manilow launched a 28 million dollar lawsuit against Los Angeles radio station KBIG over its pledge to not play his music and its TV ad campaign in support of the “No Manilow” policy.

➦In 1996...the "Telecommunications Act of 1996" deregulated Radio ownership.

The Telecommunications Act of 1996 was the first significant overhaul of telecommunications law in more than sixty years, amending the Communications Act of 1934. The Act, signed by President Bill Clinton (using an electronic pen), represented a major change in American telecommunication law, since it was the first time that the Internet was included in broadcasting and spectrum allotment. One of the most controversial titles was Title 3 ("Cable Services"), which allowed for media cross-ownership. According to the Federal Communications Commission (FCC), the goal of the law was to "let anyone enter any communications business -- to let any communications business compete in any market against any other."  The legislation's primary goal was deregulation of the converging broadcasting and telecommunications markets.  However, the law's regulatory policies have been questioned, including the effects of dualistic re-regulation of the communications market.

Previously, the Communications Act of 1934 (“1934 Act”) was the statutory framework for U.S. communications policy, covering telecommunications and broadcasting. The 1934 Act created the FCC, the agency formed to implement and administer the economic regulation of the interstate activities of the telephone monopolies and the licensing of spectrum used for broadcast and other purposes. The Act left most regulation of intrastate telephone services to the states.

In the 1970s and 1980s, a combination of technological change, court decisions, and changes in U.S. policy permitted competitive entry into some telecommunications and broadcast markets. In this context, the 1996 Telecommunications Act was designed to allow fewer, but larger corporations, to operate more media enterprises within a sector (such as Clear Channel's dominance in radio), and to expand across media sectors (through relaxation of cross-ownership rules), thus enabling massive and historic consolidation of media in the United States. These changes amounted to a near-total rollback of New Deal market regulation.

➦In 2000...WGN-Chicago morning radio personality and private pilot Bob Collins was killed in a mid-air collision at age 57. His airplane and that of a student pilot collided upon approach to the runway at the airport in Waukegan, Illinois. The student pilot, Sharon Hock, was directly below him and they were unaware of each others' presence until the collision. Collins attempted to steer his plane to a safe landing, but it crashed and burned atop a nearby hospital, killing him and a passenger. Hock crashed three blocks away and also died.

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