FCC starts clock on Ion/Urban deal


The unique transaction between Ion Media and Urban Television, an entity related to RLJ Companies and BET founder Robert Johnson, would make the two co-licensees of 52 television stations. Since both would be official licensees, they would like split-stream digital must carry for at least two digital channels. The companies requested “waivers, to the extent necessary, of the procedures governing share time agreements” and confirmation of the right of Urban to must-carry status. The FCC took the trouble to announce that public notice was given 11/18/08, starting a 30-day clock for petitions to deny.

RBR/TVBR observation: We suspect if there are any such petitions, they will be coming from the CATV industry, possibly supported by their friends in the satellite business.