FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler was asked Tuesday to comment on the story, first reported in B&C/Multichannel News online, that the a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking was in the works that would classify linear over-the-top video providers as Multichannel Video Programming Distributors (MVPDs), subject to access to programming as well as the retrans payment regime.
At a press conference following the FCC's September public meeting, Wheeler was asked to elaborate on the thinking that went into the "proposal going around," and suggested that characterization was a bit of an overstatement. "You guys are good," he said, "and somebody found out that it was an idea that was being kicked around, rather than going around, and that's where it stands."
He also referred to an interview with B&C/Multichannel News earlier this week, where he said he was not ready to plant the flag on the issue, saying he stood by that statement.
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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.