The FCC order, the station groups have to negotiate with AT&T in DirecTV dispute

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The Federal Communications Commission said on Friday it was the stage station groups to the negotiating table over the needs of the local train stations to be provided by AT&T Inc, DirectTV, after some of the consumers have been without access for up to five months.

FILE PHOTO: the logo of The company, AT&T, which is shown on a display on the first floor of the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) in New York city, USA-September 18, 2019 at the latest. REUTERS/Brendan McDermid/File Photo

In June, AT&T filed a bad faith complaint against the nine individual station owners, who have collectively pulled in 20 stations in 17 cities and towns of DIRECTV, DIRECTV and/or U-verse. The nine station groups can be managed and / or controlled by Sinclair Broadcast Group), AT&T said.

One of the owners checks in a three-ABC, CBS, NBC, or FOX affiliates, while others have two, and five owners. AT&T said that it has reached an agreement with three of the nine broadcasting companies referred to in the complaint.

AT&T reached settlements with two of the groups, and the FCC has said that the seven remaining channel groups, “violated the per se good faith negotiation standards,” and cited the repeated delays of the negotiators on the part of owners to agree to the talks. “This is the most obvious example of this delay is that we have seen since the good-faith rules are adopted,” the FCC said.

I said: “the matter is between the licensees and the FCC. We do not have any involvement in the negotiations.”

AT&T told the FCC ruled that the station groups’ behavior is a violation of the rules, it appears that the whole of the retransmission consent process is broken, and the question of immediate reforms.”

The company added it was clear that one of the more blatant examples of how the networks routinely hold consumers hostage in the payment of higher and higher retrans fees, in place of the steward of the public airwaves.”

In October, I said that it had reached a multi-year agreement, DIRECTV, and AT&T TV and U-verse for the continuation of the use of the I ‘ s are the property of the local broadcast stations and other programming services, including the Tennis Channel, as well as a regional sports network, with the Chicago Cubs games starting in 2020.

The dispute comes as Congress considers re-authorization of the Satellite Television Extension and a Locally-Acting (SINGLE), is a law with respect to the transmission of television programmes by satellite companies. If the law is not renewed, the FCC loses the authority to enforce “good faith” in the rules and regulations relating to the transfer approval.

On Wednesday, the Senate Commerce Committee plans to take up the bill introduced by the jury’s chair, and Roger Wicker.

“If Congress does not extend the SINGLE case this year, the broadcaster of TV blackouts will continue to increase in frequency,” AT&T said.

Report by David Shepardson; edited by Steve Orlofsky and Jonathan Oatis

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