FCC Seeks Comment on Modifying the Rules Governing Significant Viewed Stations

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The Federal Communications Commission (FCC or Commission) seeks comment, in a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM), on its methodology for determining whether a television broadcast station is “significantly viewed” outside of its local market and therefore may be carried by cable and satellite operators. Under the Commission’s current rules, cable and satellite providers must demonstrate that a broadcast station is significantly viewed, based on independent audience surveys of over-the-air television homes, to be able to carry more than one station that duplicates the content on the local station. Recently, there have been changes to how the over-the-air viewership data is measured. Thus, the Commission seeks comment on whether the current measurement structure is outdated and whether there should be other modifications to this methodology.

Interested parties may file comments 30 days after publication of the NPRM in the Federal Register, which has yet to occur, and may file reply comments 60 days after publication in the Federal Register.

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