|For Immediate Release
May 13, 2013
Manassas, VA – In advance of a Senate Commerce Committee “State of Video” hearing Tuesday, NRB trumpeted the value of faith programming in American media. In particular, NRB President & CEO Dr. Frank Wright highlighted the vital importance of “Must Carry” laws – rules that enable many local television broadcast stations, including religious stations, to be viewed on pay-TV platforms. He also emphasized care for religious programming in spectrum allocation deliberations.
“Congress and the Supreme Court were right in establishing and upholding today’s ‘Must Carry’ law,” Dr. Wright stated. “Religious TV stations providing valuable content and services for their local communities have blossomed in recent decades. I encourage Senators to recognize the important place of these ministries for TV consumers and to uphold sound and unobtrusive ‘Must Carry’ law.”
Today’s “Must Carry” rights for free, local television were enacted by Congress in 1992 and upheld by the Supreme Court in 1997. Congress then found that cable systems have an “economic incentive” to “delete, reposition, or not carry local broadcast signals” and that, without “Must-Carry” rules, the “viability” of broadcasters “will be seriously jeopardized.”
Regarding spectrum, Dr. Wright declared, “Let us be careful not to auction away wholesome programming from the airwaves.”
In the current FCC incentive auction proceeding, 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.
About NRB The National Religious Broadcasters (NRB) is a non-partisan, international association of Christian communicators whose member organizations represent millions of listeners, viewers, and readers. Our mission is to advance biblical truth; to promote media excellence; and to defend free speech. In addition to promoting standards of excellence, integrity, and accountability, NRB provides networking, educational, ministry, and fellowship opportunities for its members. Learn more at www.nrb.org.
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