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Also listen to the action at Sounds of Seattle
During the week of September 9, 2002, members of the radio industry traveled to Seattle, Washington for the National Association of Broadcasters' annual radio convention.
The same week, two other groups of people also began converging on Seattle. Both of these groups came to criticize and challenge the gathering of corporate radio executives and managers, but each had its own idea about how to talk back.
This was not the first time the NAB radio convention has been the focus of protest. When the convention was held in San Francisco in 2000, thousands of people massed in the streets to speak out about the state of radio in America.
At that time, media activists were thick in the fight to try and save the FCC's new low power FM (LPFM) license system from assassination from the broadcast industry, and much of the protest focused on the potential for the legalization of microradio - the unlicensed version of which has been a form of electronic civil disobedience since the late 1980's.
There was a real need two years ago to be in the streets, to take such direct action to make the message stick. Two years later, the media democracy movement that began to crystallize in San Francisco is fighting on new fronts, and another confrontation on the streets wouldn't be as effective.
This time around, LPFM exists (but barely), and just another tool to be discussed and strategized upon at the myriad of conferences which shaped the Reclaim the Media! counter-convergence - definitely the more high-profile of the two anti-NAB events that took place Seattle.
event is the one we'll cover here. Under the radar of the NAB, and with
the tacit support of Reclaim the Media! organizers, a "Mosquito Fleet"
of microradio activists from around the country also converged and coordinated
a mass occupation of Seattle's FM radio dial - direct action on the airwaves
against the corporate media.
Strategic Goals of the Mosquito Fleet:
Tactical Goals of the Mosquito Fleet:
Note that none of these goals even mention anything about the Federal Communications Commission, or its ongoing enforcement activities. The perspective of many participants is that the FCC would basically be a non-concern for the duration of the Mosquito Fleet's cruise. Even so, contingencies had to be covered.