KUSF Needs You To Write the FCC

Categories: Media
Only Uncle Sam can save you now....
On Tuesday, the Board of Supervisors will likely approve a symbolic resolution opposing the University of San Francisco's decision to sell KUSF, the community-based radio station that was abruptly shut down two weeks ago. Even if the vote is unanimous, as author Supervisor Ross Mirkarimi hopes, it will won't likely change anything.

The community has a much better chance at saving the old indie station if everyone writes to the Federal Communications Commission, which is considering the sale this month.

If this isn't ironic -- USF tells us the government agency that regulates communications technology is asking that the public send its comments via snail mail.

So go buy a stamp and an envelope.

Here's the address:

Federal Communications Commission
Office of the Secretary
445 12th Street, SW,
Room TW-A325
Washington, DC 20554

According to savekusf.org, you can also send the letter to USF's Michael Bloch to be included in the FCC's public file for USF:

Michael Bloch

University of San Francisco

College of Arts and Sciences

2130 Fulton Street

San Francisco, CA 94117

The fate of the radio station is in the hands of FCC. The university says it can't get out of the $3.75 million deal it made to sell 90.3FM even if it wanted to, according to spokesman Gary McDonald. (We're guessing it doesn't, though McDonald wouldn't comment on that.) The university is contractually bound to the decision, unless the feds oppose the transaction.

"There's no backtracking for us at this point," McDonald says. "You can't just decide you can't go through with the contract you've signed. The FCC can undo the deal. USF can't undo the deal."

So what if the FCC was to reject the sale? USF isn't expecting that to happen.

"We're not making a contingency plan because we're expecting the deal to go through," McDonald says.

McDonald says that KUSF was no longer serving the educational purpose it did when it first started in the 1970's. "It was completely managed and run by students. Now it's only 10 percent run by students. Now we're subsidizing what's essentially a community-run station with student tuition dollars, and that's what we think isn't fair."

The university has maintained the full-time staffers to maintain the online radio station kusf.org, the only place you can still hear KUSF content.

And it will likely stay that way, unless you write Uncle Sam.

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My Voice Nation Help

The FCC should not be asked to play the middle for USF wanting to back out of the contract. Should the FCC do so would implicate a separate issue into a can of worms scenario.

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