Cable Complains To FCC 2nd Time Over WFSB

Cablevision said Friday it has filed a complaint with the FCC against Meredith, owner of WFSB Hartford, stating that the company has not bargained in good faith and asking the commission to step in.

“The FCC should direct Meredith Corporation to immediately cease its bad faith negotiation practices and separate the negotiations for carriage of WFSB in Litchfield and New Haven Counties from those regarding carriage in Fairfield County where there is already another CBS station," the company said in a statement. "This would lead to an agreement to return
CBS programming to Cablevision customers in Litchfield and New Haven Counties."

It is the second Washington gambit employed by Cablevision in an effort to get the FCC involved in the impasse--WFSB was off Cablevision as of Jan. 3 after the two sides could not reach an agreement.

Cablevision last week asked the FCC to block the sale of KMOV to Meredith, arguing Meredith's alleged failure to argue in good faith made it an unfit licensee. At the time, Meredith countered: “Cablevision’s assertions are untrue and reflect its lack of understanding of Connecticut television viewers,” Meredith said in a statement. "Cablevision has refused to even negotiate, and is revealing its true colors by wasting time with baseless press releases meant to mislead Connecticut residents."

Meredith was preparing a response at press time to the latest filing, and accompanying press release.

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.