Comcast must reposition the Bloomberg Television business news channel into "news neighborhoods" in 106 headends -- spanning the 35 largest U.S. markets -- within 60 days to comply with a condition of the FCC's approval of the NBCUniversal deal, the Media Bureau ordered Wednesday.
Comcast plans to appeal the order to the full Federal Communications Commission, saying the Media Bureau "misinterpreted" the terms of the Comcast-NBCU order.
"We respectfully disagree with the Media Bureau's interpretation of the 'neighborhooding' condition, which so clearly rewrites the history and any permissible underlying rationale for the condition," Comcast vice president of government communications Sena Fitzmaurice said in a statement. "Since by definition, no 'discrimination' against Bloomberg in favor of CNBC could have taken place before the NBCUniversal transaction, any retrospective condition on this subject would have been arbitrary and capricious. And there is simply no support in any record for a four channel definition of a 'neighborhood.'"
The bureau found that Bloomberg Television is an "independent news channel" covered by the "news neighborhooding" condition adopted in the Comcast-NBCU order.