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Consumer inquiries, complaints to FCC drop sharply in Q3 ‘09, says report

The FCC tally of informal consumer inquiries and complaints for the third quarter of 2009 shows a dramatic drop in the total number of inquiries.

The quarterly report, released April 2, shows inquiries in all four categories tracked by the commission fell 95 percent from 585,164 in the preceding quarter to 26,605 in Q3 ’09.

Even more dramatic was the decline in inquiries related to radio and television, which fell 99 percent from 563,397 in Q2 to 6307 in the third quarter of last year. The nation’s transition from analog to digital television transmission was completed early in Q2 ‘09. According to the commission tally for the second quarter, 98 percent of these consumer inquiries were related to equipment issues. More than 48 percent of the inquiries recorded in Q3 ’09 related to broadcasting had to do with programming issues.

Overall, complaints also fell in the third quarter, dropping 11 percent from 70,341 in the second quarter to 62,660 in Q3 ‘09. Complaints specifically regarding radio and TV also declined, from 17,047 to 6700 in a quarter-to-quarter comparison.

Inquiries related to cable and satellite service to the commission also fell 13 percent from the second to third quarter of ’09 from 4241 to 3669. However, the number of consumer complaints filed with the commission related to this category actually climbed 22 percent from 2384 to 2910.