Replies to Responses/Oppositions Due: 10/29/2014

FCC announces extension of time to file replies to responses and 
oppositions for its review of applications of Comcast, Time Warner Cable,
and Charter Communications 

The FCC explains its delay in the process by citing recent filings submitted by Comcast stating that its acquisition of NBCUniversal has not led to higher prices for NBC national networks and local TV stations.  This is an outcome that runs counter to the FCC's own analysis of the data. The FCC is asking for an independent verification of this claim.  And it wants more detailed answers from Comcast and Time Warner Cable to questions the FCC asked about the merger during this past summer. When the time delay was announced, the FCC was 85 days into a 180-day review process. The FCC expects to restart the clock on October 29.  This is the new deadline for public comments on the deal, and pushes a final recommendation on the merger into 2015.

Many LPTV licensees (including this writer) have reported having hassles and no cooperation from the merger partners during either leased access or retransmission consent conversations. There is a lawsuit filed by an LPTV operator in Florida  which has just been referred back to the FCC from the courts.  
The Coalition submitted comments into the merger proceedings to ask very more data from the merger participants.  Coalition Filing

But we now need other LPTV licensees to step up and provide their experiences with any of the three merger partners in trying to obtain leased access deals, retransmission consent, and basic carriage for either their own original programming or that of the networks they air.

There has been a total of over 80,000 filings into the merger record!  With more than 4,400 in the last month alone.  So to make it easier for you to do this, and for our collective voices to be heard with impact, the Coalition has set up a simple form to input your contact information and share your experiences of trying to work with the merger partners.  

We have about three weeks to do this, so if you want to participate and share your experiences for the record, just go to the form, fill it out, and we will include it as part of the Coalition filing.

We have heard from many LPTV that getting on cable was the way for them to make their local broadcast business successful.  So please take the time to get your real life experiences into the FCC record.

Mike Gravino
LPTV Spectrum Rights Coalition