An FCC spokesperson confirmed that as of Thursday midday the FCC had still not released its protective orders for how sensitive information would be treated and shared with third parties in the Charter-Time Warner Cable merger review (and other reviews going forward).
The item was voted last week, but the FCC was incorporating the dissents by Republican commissioners before releasing the orders.
Industry players are eager to see just how the FCC has structured the orders and access by third parties to sensitive program carriage agreements and their work products, though the Republicans have already signaled they think the FCC should have separated out the general framework guidance going forward from the specific Charter-TWC orders. That guidance was in response to a court order to better justify why it thought sharing data with hundreds of third parties was necessary.
FCC chairman Tom Wheeler has said the comment cycle and informal 180-day shot clock on the Charter-TWC deal won't start until the orders are released.
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.
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