ACA: Small Cable Ops Can’t Meet FCC Mandate

American Cable Association: Some smaller cable operators don’t have ad-insertion equipment, can’t provide on-air messages about DTV transition.

The American Cable Association said some of its members won't be able to comply with one of the Federal Communications Commission's proposed digital-TV-education mandates.

The commission is considering requiring cable operators to provide on-air messages about the transition to digital. But the ACA said some smaller operators do not have ad-insertion equipment and, thus, are technologically incapable of doing so.

"Independent cable operators recognize their important role in helping to educate their community about the upcoming transition," ACA president Matthew Polka said in announcing the FCC request. "While many independent cable operators can use their systems to educate their subscribers through inserted advertisements, there are many smaller operators that simply do not have the equipment necessary to comply."

The ACA asked the FCC to take that into account and provide a "fair and reasonable exemption" from the requirement for those systems.