Staffers indicate FCC likely to stay out of retransmission controversy


Many members of the cable and satellite MVPD community have been asking the FCC to get involved in the issue of retransmission consent negotiations. But FCC staff at the cable convention going on Los Angeles indicated that the FCC is not very interested in sticking its nose into the process.

According to the Los Angeles Times, a top advisor to FCC Chairman Julius Genachowski said that the Commission sees it as a market process. The only concern is that cable subscribers not be left in the dark when negotiations become contentious and lead to pulled channel feeds. She noted that only rarely do the negotiations get to that brink.

According to LAT, an advisor to Robert McDowell, who is a strong proponent of free markets, said that there is nothing at all wrong with broadcasters asking for extra cash in a negotiation.

RBR-TVBR observation: The broadcast party line on retransmission is that the system is working just fine as Congress intended. So in this case, no news is definitely good news.