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ACA Backs Broad Application of Reverse Effective Competition Presumption

The American Cable Association told the FCC Friday that it is happy to have larger operators included in the FCC's effort to streamline the effective competition process and reverse the presumption that cable systems don't have competition unless proved otherwise— for purposes of deregulation basic cable rates.  

The version of satellite license reauthorization legislation (STELAR) that passed last fall included a mandate that the FCC look at making that process easier. The FCC, given that it has granted virtually all cable requests to deregulate basic rates of late given, principally, the presence of MVPDs Dish and DirecTV, has proposed presuming cable operators are competitive and putting the onus on opponents of that deregulation to prove they are not.  

Critics of the FCC proposal say the Congress was trying to help smaller operators, like ACA members, and did not mean for the FCC to reverse the presumption, and certainly not for all operators.  

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Contributing editor John Eggerton has been an editor and/or writer on media regulation, legislation and policy for over four decades, including covering the FCC, FTC, Congress, the major media trade associations, and the federal courts. In addition to Multichannel News and Broadcasting + Cable, his work has appeared in Radio World, TV Technology, TV Fax, This Week in Consumer Electronics, Variety and the Encyclopedia Britannica.