02.13.2006 10:38 AM
FCC endorses cable a la carte

As expected, the FCC, under chairman Kevin Martin turned the tables on cable à la carte, contending that most cable television customers would save money if allowed to pay for only the channels they want to watch.

That finding comes from a new FCC report released last week. It reverses a finding under Michael Powell’s leadership at the commission. The Powell FCC determined à la carte would result in higher subscription costs. Martin said that the earlier report was flawed.

The new FCC research said cable subscribers would save as much as 13 percent on their cable bills if they could buy only the channels they wanted instead of being forced to pay for hundreds of them. The average household, the commission said, watches only 17 channels.

The cable industry protested the findings of the report, while consumer advocates and congressional supporters praised it. Sen. John McCain (R-AZ), a congressional supporter of à la carte, announced he would introduce legislation this week to require channel choice.

The National Cable & Telecommunications Association (NCTA), the cable industry trade group, protested the finding saying that "is disappointing that the updated report relies on assumptions that are not in line with the reality of the marketplace."

Cable programmers argue that selling bundles of channels allows them to produce a greater variety of programming. If subscribers were allowed to pick only the channels they wanted, the industry said many programs that have small but dedicated followings would have to be shut down.

Back to the top

Post New Comment
If you are already a member, or would like to receive email alerts as new comments are
made, please login or register.

Enter the code shown above:

(Note: If you cannot read the numbers in the above
image, reload the page to generate a new one.)

No Comments Found

Tuesday 03:07 PM
WMUR-TV Says FAA Drone Rules Preclude ENG
The FAA’s current rules and proposed ban on flight over people, requirement of visual line of sight and restriction on nighttime flying, effectively prohibit broadcasters from using UAS for newsgathering. ~ WMUR-TV General Manager Jeff Bartlett

Featured Articles
Exhibitions & Events
Discover TV Technology