Religious Broadcasters’ Views Absent From Hill Video Hearing

Capitol Hill
(Image credit: Gary Arlen)

Religious broadcasters felt left out of last week's state of the video marketplace hearing.

The hearing, in the House Energy & Commerce Committee, featured witnesses representing commercial broadcasters, cable/broadband operators and over-the-top video providers.

In an online roundup for its members, National Religious Broadcasters pointed out that while it sent a letter to the committee in advance of the hearing outlining its issues and had its policy team in the hearing room, no mention was made of religious broadcasting.

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NRB was also not pleased that the hearing's broadcast carriage issue was strictly confined to retransmission consent rather than the must-carry option that most religious broadcasters elect.

One issue the hearing did deal with was children's programming. Leaving religious broadcasters out of that discussion was a missed opportunity, the association suggested. 

“While broadcasters have historically been a trusted source for children’s programming, digital streaming services are not bound to the same standards as traditional formats and open the door for unsuitable content for children,” NRB pointed out in its online hearing takeaway. “Religious broadcasters are important to this aspect of the video marketplace discussion because of their important role in delivering wholesome, family-friendly content.”

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.