HOME > NEWSROOM > ARTICLES > Senate Panel to Look at TV Marketplace

Senate Panel to Look at TV Marketplace

Next Tuesday, May 14, Senators with seats on the Communications Subcommittee of the Senate Commerce Committee will review the “State of Video.” Chairman Mark Pryor (D-AR) has called the hearing as one in a series looking into America’s current communications landscape. With top leaders from the National Association of Broadcasters (NAB), the National Cable & Telecommunications Association, and DISH Network, as well as Public Knowledge, called to testify, ongoing TV debates are likely to be stirred. Among subjects of particular interest to NRB are respect for the importance of “Must Carry” law and spectrum rights.

“Must Carry” law, enacted by Congress in 1992 under the Cable Act and upheld by the Supreme Court in 1997, enables many local television broadcast stations, including religious stations, to be viewed on pay-TV platforms. NRB has affirmed and will continue to affirm the vital importance of “Must Carry” law for religious TV broadcasters. Indeed, efforts to eliminate that law could be fatal to many Christian TV stations and may harm the ability of millions of Americans to continue accessing the religious programming on which they rely.

Regarding spectrum, Congress last year passed legislation authorizing a voluntary incentive spectrum auction. The FCC formally began this proceeding in September 2012 in hopes of finalizing rules in 2013 and completing the auction in 2014. NRB filed public comments encouraging the FCC to purposefully protect the programming choice for Americans, specifically the religious and family programming that NRB Members provide free of charge to local communities. NRB also highlighted the "no-alter" clause in the Spectrum Act for low power television (LPTV) and proposed constructive solutions to keep important religious and family LPTV programming on the air for consumers. NRB continues to urge a process that fairly honors the services and investments of all Christian television broadcasters in their local communities. In addition, NRB supports legislative efforts to enact a much-needed comprehensive accounting of America’s electromagnetic spectrum.

      • Learn more about this upcoming “State of Video” hearing here.
      • Find the NRB Board of Directors’ recent Resolutions on the importance of “Must Carry” law
        and on spectrum.

By Aaron Mercer, Vice President of Government Relations

Published: May 10, 2013

Latest News

NRB Lauds Stand for Religious Freedom in Louisiana

Legislation intended to be a preventative shield for religious freedom in advance of the coming Supreme Court decision on marriage was shelved by a committee in the Louisiana legislature this week.

Commissioner Highlights Uncertainty on Collection of Fines

While the $1 million fine given to iHeartMedia for misusing Emergency Alert System (EAS) tones was the big news out of the FCC Enforcement Bureau this week, FCC Commissioner Michael O’Rielly had another interesting point to make about the agency’s penalties generally.

Senate Adopts Religious Freedom Measure in Trade Bill

The U.S. Senate this week adopted an amendment by U.S. Senator James Lankford (R-OK) that would require the Executive Branch to take religious freedom into consideration when negotiating trade agreements.

House Democrats Push for More On-Air Disclosure

A number of House Democrats have co-sponsored legislation that would require the FCC to increase the amount of information revealed on-air for political ads.

InterVarsity President Alec Hill to Step Down Following Cancer Diagnosis

InterVarsity Christian Fellowship President Alec Hill has been diagnosed with myelodysplasia, a cancer of the bone marrow, and will start treatment on June 10, according to an announcement last Friday.

NRB Milestone Award Honors 50+ Years of Christian Broadcasting: Is Your Organization Eligible?

NRB members who have achieved 50 years or more of continuous broadcast ministry are eligible to be considered for the NRB Milestone Award.

NRB Members: Do You Want to Be Highlighted in NRB Today?

Luis Palau Presents Good News Message to 30+ UN Ambassadors at United Nations HQ

International evangelist Luis Palau recently presented the “good news in the city” message to more than 30 ambassadors at the United Nations during the Ambassadors’ Spring Luncheon Forum. The gathering also included several members from the UN Security Council.

Hearings Highlight Internet Governance Concerns

This week two hearings in the U.S. House of Representatives focused on the future operation and governance of the Internet.

Senate Calls for Release of American Citizens in Iran

This week the U.S. Senate approved a resolution calling for the release of several Americans being held in Iran, among them Pastor Saeed Abedini, a resident of Idaho.

More News