NCTA To FCC: Reject Multicast Must-Carry


On the multichannel must-carry issue, the FCC was right the first, and second, time, says Kyle McSlarrow.

Just as the confirmation of new FCC Commissioner Robert McDowell freed FCC Chairman Kevin Martin to start moving a host of items, so has one of those items, his effort to require cable to carry all of a broadcasters digital signals, launched a flood of letters and e-mails.

The most recent came from McSlarrow, president of the National Cable & Telecommunications Association, who wrote Martin and the other FCC commissiosners Thursday to argue against that step.

Pointing out that the FCC has twice ruled that digital must-carry means one channel, not multiple ones, McSlarrow argues that "two bites of the apple is enough," and that if there is something wrong with those two decisions, which he does not believe there is, judicial or legislative remedies are available.

McSlarrow has allies in Joe Barton and Fred Upton, chairmen of the House Energy & Commerce Committee and the House Telecommunications Subcommittee, respectively, who have also written Martin saying the FCC got it right the first two times.