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Cable opposes Ion’s bid for must-carry

Mon, 01/05/2009 - 7:40am
Brian Santo

The Viacom-Time Warner argument is not the only carriage issue to arise at the beginning of 2009. Ion Media and Urban Television wish to create a new over-the-air TV network aimed at minorities, and they are proposing a novel approach of shared licensing.

That they also want the FCC to grant must-carry status to those stations has elicited the opposition of the cable industry.

The two companies’ sole purpose, the NCTA argues, is to get the FCC to declare “that multicast streams on Ion stations are entitled to must-carry status on cable systems – a conclusion the Commission has already rejected a number of times.”

The whole point of Ion’s proposal, the NCTA charges, is to gain the must-carry rights that it can then assign to Urban Television under the novel shared license plan.

The NCTA is urging the FCC to reject the plan out of hand.

Backers of the proposal include Rainbow/PUSH, the NAACP, the Urban League and the National Association of Black Owned Broadcasters.

Urban Television is run by Robert Johnson, the owner of BET.

More Broadband Briefs:

• Viacom-TWC tussle on shifting ground 

• Cable opposes Ion's bid for must-carry 

• Broadstripe descends into Chapter 11 

• Digital TV subsidy program running out of money 

• Concurrent upgrades server software for advanced ads 

• Intel, Adobe team up to bring Flash to TVs 

• LG high-def TVs to stream Netflix videos directly 

• Verizon, Alltel deal will close Friday 

• Dutch MSO picks Arris' DOCSIS 3.0-certified EMTA 

• Broadband Briefs for 01/05/09 

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