January 10, 2008
On Thursday, January 3, ACA urged the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) to adopt changes to existing regulations to provide independent operators with more flexibility to provide consumers with choices and better value. ACA's filing comes in response to the FCC's request for comments in its rulemaking on the retransmission consent and program access rules.
In its comments, ACA provided evidence that broadcaster and programmer behavior during carriage negotiations cause significant harm to consumers served by small and medium-sized cable providers. As a result, the ACA estimated that 30% of the channels carried on expanded basic and 45% of the channels carried on digital tiers are carried under tying or bundling arrangements imposed as conditions of access to desired channels.
ACA urged the FCC to make four adjustments to current regulations:
"ACA supports moderate but meaningful changes in wholesale programming and retransmission consent practices," explained Matthew M. Polka, ACA's president and CEO. "We do not want to disrupt the programming chain, but simply want the Commission to constrain programmers and broadcasters from using their market power to deny more choices to our customers."
Please use the information below to get in touch with the American Cable Association.