The Spanish Broadcasters Association (SBA) thinks FCC Chairman Kevin Martin’s proposal to grant must-carry status to Class A television stations is an excellent idea. The SBA has a vested interest – the FCC notes that 43% of Class A television stations broadcast in Spanish.
“Minority broadcasters have found their best access into the industry through LPTVs. It is certainly welcome to have the FCC give these broadcasters greater security and better access to the TV distribution channels,” said Amador Bustos, SBA VP and CEO of Bustos Media.
“Chairman Martin’s proposal will ensure that these local broadcasters are carried by the cable and satellite systems services after the digital transition,” added SBA President Ronald J. Gordon. “The proposal will enhance localism, diversity and small business in the broadcasting industry.”
RBR/TVBR observation: Cable operators will not like Martin’s proposal, just as nobody anywhere likes being told what to do by anybody. But in a lot of cases, Class As do get carriage, because they can provide niche programming unavailable on other local broadcast outlets and help cable operators sell subscriptions. We’ll have to see if the notion of increasing diversity on the channel lineup trumps cable’s likely urge to resist this on general principles.