NECTA 2017: Policy Battles Hurt Cable Due to ‘Legacy Baggage’

Newport, R.I.—Executives at top cable operators Comcast and Charter Communications said policy battles, such as over net neutrality, hurt the cable industry’s efforts to improve its reputation with consumers—partly because of “legacy baggage as an industry.”

Speaking the day after Facebook, Google, Twitter and many other tech companies participated in a “day of action” supporting net neutrality policies governing cable companies and other internet service providers, Comcast senior executive VP David Cohen said the “public policy battles that we face are constantly undermining our attempt to be able to tell our story to the consumer.”

On the same panel opening the New England Cable & Telecommunications Association convention here, Michael Powell, president of NCTA-the Internet and Television Association, said that because consumers don’t have good feelings about cable companies, they are more likely to believe warnings that ISPs might deliberately take actions to, say, slow down the traffic that goes to sites that don’t pay extra for priority service.

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Kent Gibbons

Kent has been a journalist, writer and editor at Multichannel News since 1994 and with Broadcasting+Cable since 2010. He is a good point of contact for anything editorial at the publications and for Before joining Multichannel News he had been a newspaper reporter with publications including The Washington Times, The Poughkeepsie (N.Y.) Journal and North County News.