Broadcasters Ask for More Time to Preserve Sweetheart Deal on Retrans

ATVA Responds to Broadcaster Request for Extension on FCC “Good Faith” Comment Period
ATVA Files Comments with FCC

Washington, D.C. – The American Television Alliance (ATVA) today filed comments with the FCC requesting the commission move forward with the proposed comment period ending on December 31, 2015.  The following statement can be attributed to Trent Duffy, ATVA national spokesman:

“After 10 years of skyrocketing retransmission fees, it’s not surprising broadcasters are asking for more time to preserve their sweetheart deal on outdated video regulations.  Broadcasters aren’t blind, and they’re scared of anything that moves toward a fairer, market-driven landscape while chipping away at the rigged system they’ve gorged on for so long.  They’ll do everything they can to confuse the issues and blow up a process that exposes the ridiculous regime that subjects TV fans to be both fleeced and used as pawns.”

“It’s interesting that broadcasters are asking for an extension yet they routinely refuse to grant them when it comes to blacking out consumers. It is a crisis that retransmission fees are up 22,400 percent and consumers cannot afford to wait as broadcasters attempt to run out the clock on reform.”

Retransmission Fees Have Risen 22,400 Percent In Ten Years:

Federal Communications Commission (FCC) Chairman Tom Wheeler has consistently noted the cost of skyrocketing retransmission fees when discussing how the FCC would help protect consumers in light of the changing media landscape:

 “The cost of these retransmission consent agreements has skyrocketed from $28 million in 2005 to $2.4 billion in 2012, a nearly 8,600 percent increase in seven years,” Wheeler said.  https://www.fcc.gov/blog/protecting-television-consumers-protecting-competition

 While that number is correct for the years to which it applies (2005 to 2012) – the increase in retransmission fees from 2005 to 2015 is explosively higher, according to the respected industry analysts at SNL Kagan.

In July, SNL Kagan reported that “retransmission consent fees are expected to climb to $10.3 billion in 2021, up from $6.3 billion in 2015.   http://www.multichannel.com/news/policy/kagan-retrans-fees-rise-103b-2021/391971

This means that retransmission fees have skyrocketed from $28 million in 2005 to $6.3 billion in 2015, a nearly 22,400 percent increase in ten years.  To illustrate the stunning increase, ATVA issued a new infographic comparing the explosive growth in retransmission fees to what other consumer goods like gasoline, bread, milk and eggs would cost if their prices skyrocketed at the same rate.

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The American Television Alliance (ATVA) brings together an unprecedented coalition of consumer groups, cable, satellite, telephone companies, and independent programmers to raise awareness about the risk TV viewers face as broadcasters increasingly threaten service disruptions that would deny viewers access to the programs they and their families enjoy.

For more information about ATVA, visit our website. Follow us on Twitter @ATVAlliance.

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