FCC Votes To Move Public Files Online


Commissioner Jessica Rosenworcel said keeping public files on paper makes no sense in the digital age. “We live in the information age and, as a result, we demand and expect all sorts of data to be available at our fingertips anytime and anywhere. So it strikes me as pretty retrograde that this commission still has on its books, a requirement that radio, cable, and satellite providers can keep their public files on paper in dusty file cabinets locked in the information practices of the past.” The Report and Order adopted Thursday calls for public files to be moved online immediately by stations in the top 50 markets with five or more employees. All other stations will have two years before they are required to move their public files online. The deadline to move online for stations outside the top 50 is March 1, 2018.


  1. I am very unomfortable with business records online. I am even more uncomfortable with the government getting involved with records being online. The way the US Government handles things, is never conducive to the public, or ever made easy. It usually gets screwed up, at the business’ expense. TV auction will be a prime example of what I mean. Stations had to go to a major expense to get HD and Digital equipment. Nothing in return from the US Government. Now to want to repack, then change to ATSC 3.0, when things just changed a few years prior, using ATSC 2.0 technology.

    Mark my words…. this will be messy, to say the least. I do not see the Government keeping radio companies’ information safe and non-hacked. I said the same thing about Facebook, just months after it was introduced. I was right… but called a “Neo-Luddite” and a “negative thinker.” A few years later, it got hacked… Surprise! The writing is already on the wall. We have seen many $300 toilet seats, now to see online safety is not a Government paramount. The FCC, FTC, FBI, Homeland Security and allot of other agencies cannot actually make stations’ sites and info safe. Until they do guarantee and enforce that safety, THIS SHOULD NOT BE ENACTED.

    If we knew the internet was a safe place, via the government officials, I would not have a single issue with this. Truth is, with a lazy care-less, union thinking government… nothing ever changes.

    Remember, the truth is not being negative. For those two are separate entities.

  2. We built one of our stations in 1983–in all those years had exactly one member of the “public” ask to see the public file. That was in 1988, when we were upgrading the station–the owner of a station some 90 miles away wanted to check our application to see if it would affect his plans to upgrade.

    There are only two reasons for the public file:
    1. A source of fines for the Commission
    2. A means of extortion and harassment for the DC lawyers and their speciual interest group clients.


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