Meredith to FCC: Mr. Antenna Claim Is Baseless

(Image credit: Meredith)

Meredith said Mr. Antenna Las Vegas got it all wrong when it said the broadcaster refused to sell it ad time to advertise its over-the-air antennas and that the FCC should reject an informal objection lodged by the company.

Over-the-air TV antenna marketer Mr. Antenna Las Vegas asked the FCC to block the transfer of the license of KVVU-TV Henderson to Gray Television, which is buying the station from Meredith, or alternatively condition the sale.

Mr. Antenna had cited what it claimed was a station policy under Meredith of not selling spot advertising time to the company. "From April 2019 until this year, Mr. Antenna advertised its outdoor antenna products and services on KVVU-TV," it told the commission. "In late June 2021, however, KVVU notified Mr. Antenna that effective July 1, 2021, KVVU would no longer accept advertising from vendors whose products presented a ‘cord-cutting’ alternative to cable service," the company said.

Mr. Antenna had said requiring that "Gray and related entities forbear from denying reasonable requests for airtime from vendors of television antennas should be made a condition of the KVUU sale."

In a response to the FCC to Mr. Antenna's informal challenge, Meredith told the FCC that Mr. Antenna had no legal basis for the challenge. It said its failure to sell over-the-air antenna ads to Mr. Antenna for a brief period of time was due to a miscommunication that it quickly attempted to resolve, offering to sell the time.

Given that, it said, there is no factual support for the complaint.

Meredith has no corporate policy against ads for over-the-air antennas or their installation, it told the FCC. It also said Gray has had no input on Meredith's decisions about what ads to take.

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.