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FCC Delays Tennis Channel v. Comcast Hearing

The FCC has delayed its
hearing on Tennis Channel's complaint against Comcast by four weeks.

The hearing had been
slated for the end of this month, but after Tennis Channel asked for more time,
and Comcast did not oppose, the new dates are now April 15 for trial briefs and
exhibits and April 20 for the beginning of document admission sessions, with
the actual hearing beginning April 25.

The original hearing
date had been March 29.

Tennis Channel argues
that Comcast is favoring its own similarly situated networks Versus and Golf
Channel by placing them on more widely viewed tiers. The complaint stems from
Comcast's decision to keep the Tennis Channel on a premium sports tier rather
than a more broadly distributed programming tier.

Comcast has long argued
that it makes the channel available to nearly every home consistent with its
affiliation agreement.

Tennis filed the
complaint in February 2010. It has been trying to get on Comcast's basic tier
for some time - Comcast declined to reposition the channel when Tennis proposed
it last year, saying it would be "cost-prohibitive." But Comcast's
high-profile play for NBC Universal provided an opportunity for Tennis to
leverage that attention on the deal to try to get wider carriage.