NAB President and CEO Curtis LeGeyt delivered his inaugural State of the Industry address during the opening of the 2022 NAB Show.
LeGeyt official opened this years conference saying, “Welcome to the 2022 NAB Show! Six words that I’ve waited three years to say!”
Welcoming delegates back to Las Vegas and the NAB show for the first time in three years, he said, “Much has happened since the last time we were together at this NAB Show. As a result, the stakes for local broadcasters and the audiences who rely on us have never been greater.
We have confronted a deadly pandemic, civil unrest, and attacks on democracy at home and abroad. Our social and professional lives were upended and forever changed.
But in spite of these challenges, one thing was a constant, comforting presence – local broadcasters.
Through everything, you were – and are – a leading voice in helping communities sort through a multitude of information and emotions, while also striving to find common ground and common good.”
In his state of industry address, LeGeyt urged the US Congress to take action to rein in the gatekeeping ability of the Big Tech giants who are stifling the economics of local news.
He said, “A 2021 study found that local broadcasters lose an estimated $2 billion annually when our content is accessed through Google and Facebook. $2 billion! But this is not a copyright problem, it’s a market power problem.
Broadcasters and all local media rely on these platforms to reach online audiences. We have no other choice. Yet their market dominance allows them to offer us “take it or leave it” compensation terms that significantly devalue our product.”
“That is why Congress must pass legislation to rein in the market power of the big tech platforms. That includes the Journalism Competition and Preservation Act, which would level the playing field for broadcasters. This bill would allow us to jointly negotiate the value of our local content that is accessed through these platforms.
“There is no long-term business model for local news if we don’t fix this existential problem.”