(New York, NY) – Today, a broad coalition of non-profit organizations and cable, satellite and telecommunications companies filed a petition for rulemaking asking the Federal Communications Commission to establish a new framework for resolving retransmission consent disputes. The coalition includes companies with over 67 million video subscribers. The filing presented a clear case that the FCC’s regulations for governing retransmission consent, created nearly 20 years ago, are outdated and are harming consumers and driving up prices.
Consumers are increasingly being put in the middle of disputes between programmers and distributors, including recurring threats of going dark, high-stakes public negotiations, and, in the case of ABC’s recent withdrawal of programming from three million Cablevision subscribers, highly-disruptive blackouts.
In today’s filing, the 14 petitioners asked the FCC to implement new dispute resolution mechanisms --such as compulsory arbitration or an expert tribunal -- and require continued carriage of broadcast signals during negotiations or disputes, to help ensure uninterrupted programming for consumers. The petitioners implore the FCC to act expeditiously to help prevent further consumer harm.
The diverse group of petitioners is comprised of the American Cable Association, Bright House Networks, Cablevision, Charter Communications, DIRECTV, DISH Network, Insight Communications, Mediacom Communications, New America Foundation, Organization for the Promotion and Advancement of Small Telecommunications Companies, Public Knowledge, Suddenlink Communications, Time Warner Cable, and Verizon.
About Time Warner Cable
Time Warner Cable is the second-largest cable operator in the U.S., with technologically advanced, well-clustered systems located in five geographic areas — New York State (including New York City), the Carolinas, Ohio, southern California (including Los Angeles) and Texas. Time Warner Cable serves more than 14 million customers who subscribe to one or more of its video, high-speed data and voice services. Time Warner Cable Business Class offers a suite of phone, Internet, Ethernet and cable television services to businesses of all sizes. Time Warner Cable Media Sales, the advertising arm of Time Warner Cable, offers national, regional and local companies innovative advertising solutions that are targeted and affordable. More information about the services of Time Warner Cable is available at www.timewarnercable.com, www.twcbc.com and www.twcmediasales.com.