Comcast says that while it
continues to view Bloomberg TV as a "respected business partner,"
Bloomberg's allegations that Comcast is not honoring its neighborhooding
condition in the NBCU deal is baseless and an attempt to manipulate the FCC for
its own gain.
Bloomberg had called on Comcast to
start placing its Bloomberg TV adjacent to other news nets, saying not doing so
was in violation of that deal pledge. But Comcast responded that Bloomberg's
charge was based on the faulty assumption that Comcast currently engages in
neighborhooding news or business nets.
Comcast pointed out that its
channel placements preceded the NBCU deal and was not based on any
"discriminatory motive to advantage CNBC or
MSNBC od disadvantage Bloomberg," and said that the FCC did not mean for
Comcast to have to remake channel lineups in 39 state Comcast pointed out that
it has launched Bloomberg TV to 18 million subs over the past five years and
continued to add the channel after the transaction with NBCU.
It also said that Bloomberg's
definition of neighborhooding, which Comcast said is as few as four channels,
is "inconsistent with its own advocacy before the FCC, leads to
nonsensical and incoherent results, and would cause mass consumer confusion and
disruption to other channels."
Comcast asked Bloomberg to
reconsider its plan to file a formal complaint at the FCC and instead,
"resume good faith discussions."
"In the end," said
Comcast, "this entire matter reflects nothing more than an attempt by
Bloomberg--a multi-billion dollar financial services conglomerate that can and
should stand on its own two feet in any negotiation--to manipulate the FCC
process for its own narrow commercial gain."
"It is unfortunate that
Comcast is continuing to ignore the FCC's clear direction. The Commission
told Comcast that it must include independent news channels, such as Bloomberg
TV," said Greg Babyak, head of government affairs at Bloomberg. "In
any news neighborhood that it carries â€˜now or in the future,' the FCC's Order
could not be more clear about what is required of Comcast. Rather than
delays and obfuscations, Comcast should respect the public interest and
implement the FCC's Order immediately."