contact

midbar_copy

Home / Articles / Blog / Consumer Choice in Online Video Act
int_slide04.jpg
19
November
2013

Consumer Choice in Online Video Act

Several months ago the FCC launched a Notice of Inquiry concerning whether the definition of “Multi-channel Video Programming Distributor” or “MVPD” should be expanded to include online video distributors (“OVDs”) such as Netflix. That action was prompted by Sky Angel’s attempt to file a program access complaint with the FCC. To date, however, the FCC has done nothing more than receive comments from the public.

On November 12, 2013, Senate Commerce Committee Chairman Jay Rockefeller (D-W. VA) unveiled a bill (the “Consumer Choice in Online Video Act”) that would allow online video distributors to elect some of the same rights afforded to traditional MVPDs, including rights under the FCC’s program access rules. Those rules, originally promulgated to assist satellite television providers in competing with cable operators, are intended to ensure that all MVPDs have non-discriminatory access to cable-affiliated programming content. While the bill would not re-define the term “MVPD”, it would give OVDs the right to adopt an MVPD-like model, triggering application of similar rights and obligations conferred on traditional MVPDs under the 1992 Cable Act. According to Rockefeller, the goal is to “largely replicate those types of protections for online services to give them the type of breathing room they need to get access to the consumer and content and ensure that the current market incumbents aren’t preventing the rise of new, innovative services.”

The Rockefeller bill, along with a bill introduced by Senator John McCain a few months ago to force cable operators to offer a la carte video programming to consumers, is just one of many such cable television reform initiatives leading up to extension of the Satellite Television Extension and Localism Act (“STELA”) before the end of year 2013. Rockefeller described his bill as the “ultimate a la carte” legislation that would give consumers the ability to “watch the programming they want to watch, when they want to watch it, how they want to watch it, and pay for only what they actually watch.

The text of the Consumer Choice in Online Video Act may be accessed here:
https://www.govtrack.us/congress/bills/113/s1680/text

Testimonials

"Our 399 unit condo decided to move from a bulk cable service contract to a competitive cable service environment. Carl helped us manage the complicated process of terminating the multiyear bulk contract ...

 

 MBC logo Final jpeg

Member, Board of Directors
Multifamily Broadband Council (MBC) 

In wake of the FCC’s Notice of Inquiry called Improving Competitive Broadband Access to Multiple Tenant Environments, competitive access to multi-tenant properties is again a burning public policy issue. We intend to summarize the controversy in a series of blog entries in the coming weeks.

Recent Articles

FCC Proposed Expansion Of the OTARD Rule

Providers should explore the possible implications of the rule change and share comments with the ... MORE

Question of the Day

Contact Info

Carl Kandutsch Law Office
2520 Avenue K, Suite 700/760
Plano, Texas 75074
Telephone: (214) 427-5354
Mobile: (207) 659-6247
Email: carl@kandutsch.com

Connect with me on linkedin_icon twitter_sm

top100-logo-sm

The Kandutsch Law Office has been selected by Broadband Communities Magazine as one of the nation's "Top 100 Technology Providers" for 2012, 2013, 2014 and 2015   

summary_icon Click Here For a Free Comprehensive Executive Summary

©2014 Carl Kandutsch Law Office
Disclaimer  |  Privacy Policy
Attorney Website Design by The Modern Firm