Support the Austin Music Network

RECEIVED Mon., March 1, 2004

Dear Editor,
   I support the Austin Music Network. Mayor Wynn has said that the channel has "no measurable direct benefit to Austin musicians." The mayor wants the economic benefits of the music industry, but at the same time is trying to stifle it. It's in poor taste to sell AMN for a cheap buck while never acknowledging the fact that the station has grown by leaps and bounds. Wynn's conflict with the station is obviously personal. AMN is finally a quality production with sharp sound and picture. With so much invested, why should it be sold to private enterprise? AMN is a nonprofit with money in the bank. It is a success. Personally, I can no longer count the number of times that I've frequented the city's music establishments as a direct effect of being introduced to new talent I otherwise would have been clueless to. Music is vital to the health of the city, and the station's survival is critical to business owners in our music and entertainment industry. To say that the city gets no direct benefit from the station is like saying that nobody spends their money on music in this city. Obviously, some critics don't watch, and have no idea of what they're missing on television or downtown. AMN uniquely provides regional and local music programming 24 hours every day that can't be found on television or radio, because they simply no longer provide original artistic opportunity. AMN is a musical revolution waiting to happen, and Austin citizens elected to have it. I watch AMN religiously, and so do all my friends. We're outraged, and will remember to vote. Less than 15% of registered Austin voters cast their ballots last May! I respect the mayor on many other decisions, but I can't let him ridicule something I believe in.
Kelly Richardson
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