FCC Dismisses WRNN Market Mod Petition

The FCC's Media Bureau has dismissed a market modification request by independent WRNN for lack of sufficient supporting data, but invited the station to resubmit it with the requisite info.

WRNN is an independent station that had been transmitting out of Kingston in upstate New York and is now co-located atop One World Trade Center in Manhattan and licensed to New Rochelle.

WRNN sought to add various communities in the New York DMA, all served by Altice, which would mean Altice would have to carry the station if it invoked must-carry, as do most independents rather than try to negotiate for carriage.

"We find that Licensee’s Petition is lacking in one significant area – a map or maps illustrating all of the relevant community locations along with other geographic features relevant to our decision," the FCC said.

The FCC said WRNN argued that coming up with the maps would be "unduly burdensome," but that FCC said it did not provide an argument for why it was a burden, or even if it was, why that would justify waiving the requirement.

The bureau signaled that it had to adhere to a recent decision requiring "strict adherence" to evidentiary requirements in requests to modify a market. But it dismissed the request without prejudice, which means it can be resubmitted, and the FCC invited it do file the petition again with it had the "necessary evidence."

The bureau back in August granted a market mod petition from WRNN to add communities served by Spectrum Bergen County.

John Eggerton

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.