Do Netflix and Spotify broadcast emergency warnings?

Answer: No, but Congress wants them to.

by / October 28, 2019
Shutterstock/Simone Hogan

Currently, only television and radio stations in the U.S. are required to broadcast emergency alerts. But with the American population, particularly younger generations, increasingly favoring Internet streaming services over these forms of entertainment, lawmakers are looking to change that requirement.

The Reliable Emergency Alert Distribution Improvement (READI) Act being introduced in the U.S. Senate would require Internet-based entertainment services such as Netflix, Spotify and the upcoming Disney+ to issue emergency warnings from the government. A similar bill has already been introduced in the House.

Under the READI Act, these streaming services would have to play alerts from FEMA and the president more than once. This is not currently required of TV and radio providers, who only have to broadcast everything once.

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