Leveling the Playing Field

And Securing Future Funding for Community Media

An Act relative to a streaming entertainment operator’s use of public rights of way has been introduced in the 2021 Massachusetts legislative session by Senator Jason Lewis and Representatives Joan Meschino and Paul Tucker. MassAccess is encouraging all Massachusetts community media centers to reach out to their state legislators and ask them to cosign on the bill.

Why this, and why now?

Streaming video providers continue to profit from subscriptions in Massachusetts but don’t pay for the use of the public rights of way like cable providers do. The Commonwealth of Massachusetts, its municipalities and the community media centers that serve them can all benefit from asking streaming entertainment providers to pay for their use of public property.

Community media stations are providing more vital services to Massachusetts residents than ever before and are doing so on increasingly lower budgets. The time is right to update Massachusetts laws to ensure that these services can continue well into the future.

In the last legislative session, the bill had over 80 cosigners in the House and Senate – which tells us there is an appetite for this type of reform. This session, we want to be sure we have the support of many more legislators, as well as local governmental bodies. You can help this effort!

You Can Help

Please call your state legislators and ask them to sign on to the bill. A show of strength is imperative! You can also ask your local city council or select board to pass a resolution in support of this effort. Every little bit of support is crucial. Use the talking points below as a guide for when you reach out. Follow up often!

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