FCC Hatches Plan to Re-regulate Cable TV

Finds cable giants too dominant in market
By Katherine Thompson,  Newser Staff
Posted Nov 10, 2007 8:53 AM CST
Federal Communications Commission (FCC) Chairman Kevin Martin speaks during a hearing on localism, Wednesday, Oct. 31, 2007, at the FCC headquarters in Washington. Federal regulators on Wednesday, Oct....   (Associated Press)
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(Newser) – The FCC is taking aim at cable television giants, finding that they have become too dominant, and is preparing to impose new regulations that would open the market to competition, the New York Times reports. Among proposals on the table is a cap that would block continued growth by the likes of Comcast and Time Warner. The regs would make it easier for independent programmers and rival video services to get traction.

With its finding that the market has become anti-competitive, the FCC departs from its policy since cable was deregulated in 1996 and bucks the trend in the Bush administration toward further deregulation—including its own plan to relax rules on newspaper, TV, and radio ownership. Champions of the move cite as results a better variety of programming and lower prices for consumers.