Telling it to the Judge

Regional Battles, National Goal
While the June 2001 court victory for Connecticut’s Prayze FM was an important event in the ongoing legal battle between pirate broadcasters and the Federal Communications Commission, it is only one front in a broader challenge to FCC authority currently taking place in the courts.
The Prayze case deserves special mention because of its fundamental attacks on both the FCC’s new low power FM (LPFM) licensing rules and on the general enforcement strategy the agency employs against the free radio movement. It is not the first station to attempt draw governmental blood in the courts, nor is it the only one finding success.
There are at least a half-dozen court cases wending their way through the federal judicial system at the moment. It is important to remember that there are basically three levels of activity in the federal court system: the District Court (where all cases begin), the Appeals Court (who can either uphold, reverse, or remand District Court judge rulings), and the Supreme Court (the ultimate arbiter of chosen disputes). Continue reading “Telling it to the Judge”

LPFM in Court

Prayze FM vs. FCC
Prayze FM has never sought publicity for its fight, preferring to quietly slug it out in court with the FCC over its right to broadcast, license or not.
Since February 1998, Prayze has methodically ground its way through the federal judicial system, winning some small battles and losing some big ones. Until this year.
Now, Prayze is full of hope again, and it holds hope for a forced expansion of the FCC’s new LPFM service as a result of its struggle. Continue reading “LPFM in Court”