B’casters Air Concerns Over STAVRA Draft

The chairs of the ABC, CBS, Fox and NBC Affiliate Boards say the current draft of the Satellite Television Access and Viewer Rights Act still includes provisions that are unfair to broadcasters and undermine viewers' free access to local TV programming.

The chairs of the ABC, CBS, Fox and NBC Affiliate Boards in a letter sent Thursday to Sens. Jay Rockefeller (D.-W.Va.) and John Thune (R.-S.D.) expressed their concerns with the Satellite Television Access and Viewer Rights Act.

A day after the Rockefeller and Thune announced that the Senate Commerce Committee had removed the contentious “Local Choice” proposal from STAVRA, the broadcasters said the current draft “still includes several highly controversial provisions that would undermine free access by your constituents and the nation’s television viewers to high quality national network and local broadcast television programming.”

The broadcasters say the bill imposes negotiation limitations on broadcasters but not cable operators. “Most troubling is the provision that grants the FCC new authority over several aspects of the broadcast business which no clear record exists to support, and does so without extending that same regulatory authority to cable and satellite companies with whom local stations compete,” the write.

The broadcasters also say the bill “asserts unprecedented extension of FCC regulatory authority over private marketplace negotiations.”

Broadcasters urge the Committee not to use the renewal of the satellite TV laws “to address extraneous issues that further undermine broadcasters’ programming rights.

“At a minimum, such significant policy changes should be subject to thoughtful discussion and consideration, rather than being rushed through the Committee process,” the broadcasters write.

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Don Thompson says:

September 14, 2014 at 9:42 pm

Levi’s Stadium app allows you to order food/beer to your seat. 16 oz beer costs $10.25, plus $5 delivery fee —————– That’s $68 for a 6-pack o’suds on a per-ounce basis, assuming just one $5 delivery fee ….. I guess all you cashcasters out there would call that “free beer.” ===================== Please follow me on Twitter @TedatACA

    Wagner Pereira says:

    September 15, 2014 at 2:21 am

    Verizon to offer Web TV starting in 2015. ACA members who thought they would never see more competition in their smaller markets begin to feel the heat ===================== Please follow me on Twitter @NotTedatACA

    Michael Ford says:

    September 15, 2014 at 4:08 pm

    If you’re going to compare an app to the cost of a cable bill, shouldn’t you at least mention that you have a 40% plus profit rate with your cablecashers antenna serivce outlets? Not too shabby for an industry that produces nothing.


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