Federal Register: February 8, 2005 (Volume 70, Number 25)
DOCID: FR Doc 05-2267
FEDERAL COMMUNICATIONS COMMISSION
Federal Communications Commission
CFR Citation: 47 CFR Part 76
Docket ID: [MB Docket No. 05-28; DA 05-169]
ACTION: Common carrier services:
DOCUMENT ACTION: Review of rules and statutory provisions; solicitation of comments.
Inquiry Regarding the Impact of Certain Rules on Competition in the Multichannel Video Programming Distribution Market
DATES: Comments may be filed on or before March 1, 2005, and reply comments may be filed on or before March 16, 2005.
This document solicits public comment on the impact of certain provisions of the Communications Act of 1934, as amended, and Commission rules on competition in the multichannel video programming distribution market. The Commission is required by legislative mandate to submit a report to Congress based on the results of this inquiry no later than September 8, 2005.
Satellite communications—; Multichannel video programming distribution market; competition; review of rules and statutory provisions,
This is a synopsis of the Commission's document in MB Docket No. 0528, DA 05169, released January 25, 2005. The complete text of the document is available for inspection and copying during normal business hours in the FCC Reference Center, 445 12th Street, SW., Washington, DC 20554, and may also be purchased from the Commission's copy contractor, BCPI, Inc., Portals II, 445 12th Street, SW., Room CYB402, Washington, DC 20554. Customers may contact BCPI, Inc. via their Web site, http://www.bcpi.com, or call 1800378 3160.
1. On December 8, 2004, the Satellite Home Viewer Extension and Reauthorization Act of 2004 (SHVERA) was enacted. (The Satellite Home Viewer Extension and Reauthorization Act, Pub. L. 108447; 118 Stat. 2809 (2004). SHVERA was enacted as Title IX of the Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2005.) Section 208 of SHVERA requires the Commission to conduct an inquiry on the impact of specific provisions of the Communications Act of 1934, as amended, and Commission rules on competition in the multichannel video programming distribution (MVPD) market. The Commission is required to submit a report to Congress on the results of its inquiry no later than nine months after SHVERA's enactment (i.e., September 8, 2005).
2. By this document, the Media Bureau (Bureau) initiates the
inquiry required by section 208 and seeks comment for use in preparation of the required report. Section 208 states:
STUDY OF IMPACT ON CABLE TELEVISION SERVICE
(a) STUDY REQUIREDNo later than 9 months after the date of enactment of the Satellite Home Viewer Extension and Reauthorization Act of 2004, the Federal Communications Commission shall complete an inquiry regarding the impact on competition in the multichannel video programming distribution market of the current retransmission consent, network nonduplication, syndicated exclusivity, and sports blackout rules, including the impact of those rules on the ability of rural cable operators to compete with the direct broadcast satellite industry in the provision of digital broadcast television signals to consumers. Such report shall include such recommendations for changes in any statutory provisions relating to such rules as the Commission deems appropriate.
(b) REPORT REQUIREDThe Federal Communications Commission shall submit a report on the results of the inquiry required by subsection (a) to the Committee on Energy and Commerce of the House of Representatives and the Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation of the Senate not later than 9 months after the date of the enactment of this Act. (SHVERA, Pub. L. 108447 sec. 208, 118 Stat. 2809, 342829 (2004).)
The following is a brief explanation of the specific rules the Commission's study must address.
\2\ See 47 CFR 76.101 and 76.103. The Commission's rules provide such protection within a station's 35mile geographic zone, which extends from the reference point of the community of license of the television station. See 47 CFR 73.658(m), 76.53, and 76.101 Note.
3. In addition to these existing rules, SHVERA also authorizes satellite carriers to offer distant digital stations and outofmarket ``significantly viewed'' stations to subscribers under certain circumstances. (See 47 U.S.C. 339 and 340, as amended by Sections 202 and 204 of SHVERA.) Existing statutory provisions permit cable operators to offer such stations. (17 U.S.C 111 (a), (c), and (f).)
4. The Bureau seeks comments, information and analysis on how these rules, individually or collectively, affect competition in the MVPD market. The Bureau also seeks studies that measure the impact of these rules, either individually or collectively, on competition generally. The Bureau further requests comment and analysis on the impact of these rules on the ability of rural cable operators to compete with DBS in the provision of digital broadcast television signals to consumers. In addition, the Bureau requests recommendations for statutory changes regarding these four rules affecting competition in the MVPD market. Procedural Matters
5. Ex Parte Rules. There are no ex parte or disclosure requirements applicable to this proceeding pursuant to 47 CFR 1.1204(b)(1).
6. Comment Information. Pursuant to Sec. Sec. 1.415 and 1.419 of
the Commission's rules, 47 CFR 1.415, 1.419, interested parties may
file comments and reply comments on or before the dates indicated on
the first page of this document. Comments may be filed using: (1) The
Commission's Electronic Comment Filing System (ECFS), (2) the Federal
Government's eRulemaking Portal, or (3) by filing paper copies. See Electronic Filing of Documents in
Rulemaking Proceedings, 63 FR 24121 (1998).
Federal Communications Commission.
William H. Johnson,
Deputy Chief, Media Bureau.
[FR Doc. 052267 Filed 2705; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 671201U
FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT
Marcia Glauberman, Media Bureau, [[Page 6594]]
(202) 4187046, TTY (202) 4187172, or via email at