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ACA President & CEO Matthew M. Polka Says New NFL Deals With NBC, CBS And FOX Amount To Roughing The Consumer

PITTSBURGH, December 15, 2011 - American Cable Association President and CEO Matthew M. Polka issued the following statement on news the National Football League will receive, starting with the 2013 season, an estimated 60% increase in annual television rights fees under new nine-year deals worth $27 billion combined with CBS, NBC, and FOX.

"Reports that CBS, NBC and Fox are expected to pay hyperinflationary fee increases to the NFL are a calamity for consumers and should be a clarion call to policymakers in Washington, D.C. The fact is that these outrageous sports rights fees will be thrust upon the nine out of 10 U.S. households that subscribe to cable and satellite services and are denied any opportunity to opt out of paying for the channels on which these NFL games will appear. When will the insanity on sports rights fees end?

"If CBS, NBC and FOX want to risk billions in their dealings with the NFL, that's their business. But broadcasters should not be able to rely on the government's broken retransmission consent and cable carriage rules as the means for them to recoup the cost of their corpulent NFL contracts.  Congress and the Federal Communications Commission need to throw a flag, because rules and regulations shouldn't force consumers to bear the burden of broadcasters' profligate spending, which will surely enrich NFL owners and players just as much as it will impoverish all pay-TV subscribers, particularly those who will never watch an NFL game."

About the American Cable Association: Based in Pittsburgh, the American Cable Association is a trade organization representing nearly 900 smaller and medium-sized, independent cable companies who provide broadband services for more than 7.6 million cable subscribers primarily located in rural and smaller suburban markets across America.  Through active participation in the regulatory and legislative process in Washington, D.C., ACA's members work together to advance the interests of their customers and ensure the future competitiveness and viability of their business.  For more information, visit http://www.americancable.org/

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