Thursday, April 11, 2013

NAB 2013: FCC Chair Urges New Methods of Content Delivery

FCC Chairman Julius Genachowski and Paul Karpowicz, President of Meredith Broadcasting

NAB Show, the world’s largest annual conference and expo for professionals who create, manage, and distribute entertainment across all platforms, today featured sessions with Julius Genachowski, chairman of the Federal Communications Commission (FCC); Paul Feig, director of “The Heat,” “Bridesmaids;” and Braxton Pope, producer of “The Canyons.”

FCC Chairman Julius Genachowski participated in a question-and-answer session with NAB Joint Board Chair Paul Karpowicz, president of Meredith Corporation - Local Media Group. In their discussion, Genachowski encouraged broadcasters to work side-by-side with wireless operators to find new methods of content delivery.

According to, Genachowski repeatedly told those attending his presentations at NAB during his chairmanship that he has a broadcast background.  Wednesday he revealed that he started in radio in his youth as a DJ with the on-air handle of “Midnight Rambler.”

Genachowski also said he believes a low-power FM window will open this year, noting that "this is something the Congress has an interest in.

During Genachowski's almost four years in charge of the agency, the FCC has repeatedly been at odds with broadcasters, according to Reuters.  It has started to focus on expanding Internet access across the country and launched a so-called "incentive auction" of spectrum that has pitted broadcasters against the wireless industry.

In the auction, television stations would voluntarily give up airwaves, either going off the air or sharing channels, in return for some of the proceeds from selling that spectrum to wireless companies.

NAB Live Streaming Now

As part of the day’s Creative Master Series Conference, Paul Feig spoke to attendees during his session, titled "Entertaining by All Means Necessary." Feig discussed what audiences really want in their comedy films and programming, how to write scripts that will offer direction without compromising improvisation, and his love of shooting in film versus digital. He also previewed an exclusive clip from his upcoming film “The Heat,” starring Sandra Bullock and Melissa McCarthy, which hits theaters June 28.

Braxton Pope, producer of “The Canyons,” spoke to moderator Lucas Shaw of about the unique journey the project underwent from inception to fruition. Opening in July 2013, the film, recently acquired by IFC, is the first of its kind in movie making: crowdfunded via Kickstarter and cast online via website Letitcast and other online sources. Directed by Paul Schrader (writer, "Taxi Driver" and "Raging Bull;” director, “American Gigolo" and "Affliction") – the film launches a fresh discussion around this new wave of filmmaking, described by Schrader as "cinema for the post-theatrical era.”

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