Thursday, September 23, 2010

The Future of WRVU: City Limits and a Clarification About That FCC 'Transfer of Control' Form

Posted By on Thu, Sep 23, 2010 at 10:07 AM

In this week's City Limits, I run through the recent goings-on at WRVU, namely the announcement by the Vanderbilt Student Communications board that they are considering "the migration of radio station WRVU to exclusively online programming and the sale of its broadcast license." I discuss the preemptive purchase, by VSC, of the and .com domain names and the public meeting last Sunday at which board chair Mark Wollaeger fielded questions from DJs, trainees and station supporters. You can read that here.

As for the clarification, yesterday, a link to this FCC form zipped around the Internets with a quickness. The "consummation notice" was signed Tuesday by VSC board chair Mark Wollaeger, and had people wondering if it indicated that a sale of the WRVU broadcast license had already taken place. As it turns out, no. The phrase "transfer of control" is what got people worked up — and understandably so, given what's been going on lately — but refers to what Donald Martin, the Virginia attorney listed on the form as a contact, characterized as "internal housekeeping" when reached by the Scene by phone. It's merely a formality, and as Wollaeger put it at greater length:

In the eyes of the federal government, the owner of the license is the board. When greater than 50 percent of the membership of a board changes, then technically the "owner" has changed. This filing is necessary to "transfer" ownership to the new membership of the board. The ownership of WRVU has never been transferred away from VSC, it just reflects the change in individual board members.

So rest assured, WRVU is still owned by VSC, and still on the air at 91.1 FM. For now.

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