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ACAction Brief - your connection to news and initiatives
 Public Issue – September 16, 2009
 Key Developments  

ACA Chairman Advocates for Small Cable During Washington, D.C., Trip

  Steve Friedman
On a recent visit to Washington, D.C., American Cable Association Chairman Steve Friedman met with officials at the Federal Communications Commission and staff members in the House and Senate for briefings on small cable's regulatory outlook on a range of issues impacting consumers in rural markets who subscribe to video, broadband and phone services offered by ACA members.

Friedman's two-day visit on Sept. 8 – 9 occurred at a time when lawmakers and regulators are devoting considerable time and attention to ways of improving the availability of broadband in rural areas and increasing the number of people who actually subscribe to the service, regardless of where they may live. In its advocacy, ACA has played an important role in helping shape regulators' thinking in terms of understanding the unique needs of small, independent cable operators that have been reliable providers of advanced communications services in rural America for decades. Read More / Comment on Story

ACA Agrees with Economists Hassett and Shapiro that Consumption-Based Billing Promotes Universal Broadband

In connection with an issue of increasing importance to small cable providers, the American Cable Association praised a new study by noted economists Kevin Hassett and Robert Shapiro that quantified the advantages of broadband access providers' being able to offer flexible-pricing models to their customers as the optimal means of keeping the country on track toward achieving the goal of universal broadband access within a reasonable period of time. Read More / Comment on Story

 News Headlines  
  • New SHVERA Draft Bill Ties Local-Into-Local Service To Short-Market Fix (Multichannel News, 9/15)
    A house Judiciary Committee draft of a SHVERA bill (now named the Satellite Home Viewer Digital Television Act) ties local-into-local service to all 210 DMAs to a short-market fix and does not create an opt-out of the compulsory license for stations with single-source licenses.
  • Target: Program Access (Multichannel News, 9/14)
    Cable operators didn't wait long before trying to leverage a federal appeals court's decision in Comcast vs. FCC smacking down the 30% cap on national pay TV subscribership.
  • FCC Report Language Troubles Attorneys (Broadcasting & Cable, 9/14)
    The FCC appears to be playing a little fast and loose with legal precedent as it tees up its broader inquiry into controlling content across a range of media platforms.
  • Scrutiny Grows Over Raycom's Hawaii TV Station Merger (Honolulu Advertiser, 9/13)
    When Raycom Media Inc. completes the merger of news and business operations at KHNL, K5 and KGMB9 next month, it hopes to avoid a rerun of its recent buyout of a Richmond, Va., television station.
  • Some US Areas Stymied By Internet Grant Rules-Lawmakers (The Wall Street Journal, 9/10)
    Lawmakers overseeing a $7.2 billion Internet grant and loan program said Thursday that regulators' criteria could disqualify some parts of the country from grant funding.
  • NTIA Posts Online Database Of Broadband Stimulus Funding Bids (Broadcasting & Cable, 9/9)
    As promised, the National Telecommunications & Information Administration has posted an online database of the bids submitted for the first of the $7.2 million broadband stimulus funding.
  • Obama's Pick Brings New Savvy To FCC (The Hill, 9/9)
    Julius Genachowski has an Amazon Kindle in his office. The new Federal Communications Commission (FCC) chairman keeps it next to the dictionary he inherited from his predecessors—one so dated it doesn't include the words "Internet" or "broadband."
  • Congress Weighs Landmark Change In Web Ad Privacy (Associated Press, 9/7)
    The Web sites we visit, the online links we click, the search queries we conduct, the products we put in virtual shopping carts, the personal details we reveal on social networking pages—all of this can give companies insight into what Internet ads we might be interested in seeing.
  • FTC Asks FCC To Study Internet Competition (National Journal Tech Daily Dose, 9/4)
    The FTC urged the FCC on Friday to take into consideration the consumer protection agency's primary missions of promoting competition and safeguarding consumers in the marketplace as the FCC develops its national broadband plan.
  • FCC Issues Pair Of Reminders To Operators, TV Stations (Multichannel News, 9/3)
    Under its new mantra of communications, communications and more communications, the Federal Communications Commission issued two public reminders Thursday to TV stations and cable operators, one of an upcoming deadline and the other of an ongoing obligation.

For more news, visit the Headlines Page on the ACA website.

 About ACA  

Small markets and rural areas across the country are receiving video, high-speed broadband, and phone services from more than 900 small and medium-sized independent operators represented by the American Cable Association (ACA).

ACA's membership comprises cable, phone, and fiber-to-the-home operators and municipalities, who deliver these affordable basic and advanced services, such as high-definition television, next generation Internet access, and digital phone, to more than 7 million households and businesses, some of whom have no other means of receiving these vital services.

These communications services are considered by most to be essential for individuals, companies, and other entities, like schools and hospitals, and are crucial to America's economic prosperity, particularly in smaller markets and rural areas.

The ACA works to ensure its members are treated fairly in the marketplace and in Washington, so that small and medium-sized independent operators may continue to thrive and deliver affordable video, broadband, and phone services to Main Street America. Through active participation in the legislative and regulatory process, ACA and its members advocate for the interests of their customers, their companies, and their communities to help ensure the continued viability of their hometown's way of life.

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