Broadcasters ask FCC to block Charter Time Warner Cable merger2015-10-14 01:45 by Daniela
Tags: FCC, Charter, Time Warner Cable
The National Association of Broadcasters (NAB) has asked the FCC not to approve the merger between Charter Communications and Time Warner Cable until the agency reforms broadcast ownership rules. Currently, these rules limit the number of radio and TV stations a single entity can own.
According to broadcasters the consolidation of the cable and satellite business will them at a competitive disadvantage. If the merger gets approved, this would mean that the top four pay-TV providers would control 79% of the national market, in terms of subscribers.
NAB members have sent a petition to the FCC.
"The Commission has no legal or public policy basis for continuing to approve pay-TV mergers that tilt the competitive playing field against local broadcast TV stations subject to asymmetric FCC regulations uniquely disfavoring locally-oriented free television services," reads the petition.
"The FCC has repeatedly failed its congressional mandate to review and update broadcast ownership rules while, on the other hand, approving massive consolidation amongst pay-TV providers," said NAB president and CEO Gordon Smith. "The commission should fulfill its statutory obligation so it can better factor in the effect another combination of behemoth cable companies will have on local broadcast stations and the millions of viewers who rely on our service."
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