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FCC Temporarily Stays Enforcement of Tennis Channel Decision

The FCC has stayed the administrative law judge decision granting Tennis Channel's program carriage complaint against Comcast, but only until the FCC commissioners vote Chairman Julius Genachowski's proposal "addressing the Tennis Channel's petition to compel compliance and Comcast's petition for conditional stay."

Comcast was taking what it could get. "The interim stay granted by the Office of General Counsel regarding the Tennis Channel is a welcome development," said the company in a statement, "and we hope the full Commission will follow suit. There were procedural and substantive flaws in the ALJ decision, and we continue to believe it should not be upheld."

Tennis Channel did not see it that way.

"The commission's general counsel has stated that a procedural disagreement between the parties, about the effectiveness of the ALJ decision favoring Tennis Channel, is presently being considered by the full commission. Today's action is thus simply a continuation of the status quo while the commission decides that procedural question," said Tennis Channel in a statement. "It does not constitute a stay of the judge's decision pending the commission's review of the full case.  We are pleased that the commission continues to move forward in resolving this dispute."

Back in January, Tennis Channel asked the FCC to enforce the December 2011 decision. Comcast followed with a stay request that the FCC Enforcement Bureau recommended the commission not grant..

Now, there will be no decision on the stay until the FCC votes the chairman's item.