Tribune Shareholders OK Sinclair Deal As Regulators Stop Clock On Review Process
Tribune Media shareholders have overwhelmingly approved a $3.9 billion deal for the company to be acquired by Sinclair Broadcast Group, one that will make Sinclair the nation’s most powerful local TV broadcaster.
The news comes a day after the FCC’s Media Bureau said it was stopping its 180-day clock on a ruling about the transaction, a fairly standard move as the agency seeks additional comments. It said the clock resumes November 2, the same day comments are… Read
Alfonso Cuarón, Lin-Manuel Miranda Sponsor Disaster Relief For Mexico, Puerto Rico
With videos and web links, Gravity director Alfonso Cuarón and Hamilton mastermind Lin-Manuel Miranda have put their considerable financial and creative muscle behind disaster relief efforts in Mexico and Puerto Rico. Their works go beyond fund-raising and have equally to do with consciousness raising regarding the earthquake and hurricane catastrophes that have ravaged both areas.
In the wake of the devastating earthquakes and powerful aftershocks that recently hit… Read
Barry Diller’s $250M Floating Island In The Hudson Is Sunk
Pier 55, the performance space planned for a floating man-made island in the Hudson River south of Midtown, was declared dead Wednesday by its chief underwriters, IAC chief Barry Diller and his wife, the clothing designer Diane von Furstenberg. Diller pulled the plug on the ambitious project – for which he had enlisted the support of producer Scott Rudin and, for artistic guidance, director George C. Wolfe – after six years of planning, investment and navigating… Read
Brazilian Antitrust Officials Question AT&T’s Bid For Time Warner
UPDATED, 4:50 PM: Mexico’s antitrust authorities today approved the AT&T’s pending merger with Time Warner. "We appreciate the work of both COFECE and IFT to review, analyze and approve the AT&T-Time Warner merger on its merits," said David McAtee, Senior EVP and General Counsel of AT&T Inc. "The merger of our two companies will bring together the world's best premium content with the networks to deliver that content to every screen, however customers want it."
FCC Adds Two Weeks To Comment Period On Net Neutrality Policy Changes
The FCC today gave people who want to comment on its plan to relax enforcement of net neutrality rules an additional two weeks to make their views known — rejecting pleas by open-Internet activists for an extra eight weeks.
Regulators now plan to close the comment period on August 30. The additional time will “allow parties to provide the Commission with more thorough comments, ensuring that the Commission has a complete record on which to develop its decisions,” says… Read
Critics Of Sinclair-Tribune Deal Tell FCC It Would Politicize Local News, Raise Prices
Sinclair Broadcast Group’s $3.9 billion acquisition of Tribune Media will give the company unprecedented power to politicize local TV news, raise pay TV and ad rates, slow the growth of wireless broadband, and determine what new broadcast technologies can succeed, opponents of the deal charged in filings at the FCC ahead of last night’s deadline for critics to file their concerns.
Companies including Dish Network and T-Mobile, cable TV trade organizations, public… Read
FCC Returns To Full Strength As Senate Confirms Republican & Democrat
UPDATE with MPAA statement: The FCC has a full contingent of five commissioners again after the U.S. Senate, in a voice vote today, confirmed Democrat Jessica Rosenworcel and Republican Brendan Carr.
Both already knows their way around the agency.
Rosenworcel was a commissioner from 2012 to the beginning of this year. Her term expired in mid-2015, but the Senate Commerce Committee allowed her to stay until the end of 2016 while it declined to deal with President Barack… Read
Sinclair And Nexstar Vow To Share Spectrum To Help Next-Gen TV Transition
Sinclair Broadcast Group and Nexstar Media Group said today that they will share airwave spectrum in 43 markets where they both have stations to promote a transition to a new broadcast standard — ATSC 3.0 — that supporters say could revolutionize over-the-air TV.
The new standard will make it easier to meld 4K programming and interactive broadband data in over-the-air transmissions. But it will not work on current TV sets.
As a result, companies expect the FCC will allow… Read
NYC Unveils ‘CreateNYC’ 10-Year Plan To Expand And Diversify Arts & Culture
New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio and Cultural Affairs Commissioner Tom Finkelpearl released Wednesday what they dubbed the city’s first-ever comprehensive culture plan. Enfolded in a glossy, 175-page manifesto called CreateNYC, the ambitious, 10-year plan addresses issues ranging from increasing access to arts and culture programing to the farthest reaches of the five boroughs to making the upper ranks of New York cultural institutions more reflective of the city’s… Read
Will Net Neutrality “Day Of Action” Make Internet Rules A 2018 Campaign Issue?
Public relations pros on both sides of the net neutrality debate are earning their pay today.
This is the “Day of Action” for Silicon Valley’s mightiest powers and other supporters of the FCC’s tough net neutrality enforcement rules. Oversight is needed, they say, to ensure that cable and telco internet service providers don't play favorites — for example by providing speedier transmissions for some content providers over others.
Amazon, eBay, Facebook, Google, Microsoft… Read
Appeals Court Upholds FCC Ruling That Limits Local Cable Price Regulation
The U.S. Court of Appeals in D.C. today upheld a 2015 FCC ruling that all but eliminated local cable regulators’ ability to set rates.
The commission determined that the vast majority of operators face "effective competition" from satellite and telco companies. That so-called "rebuttable presumption" stripped local officials of the right from the 1992 Cable Television Consumer Protection and Competition Act to regulate prices where there's insufficient competition.
FCC Chairman Taps Veteran Of Koch-Supported Think Tank To Be Chief Economist
FCC chairman Ajit Pai turned today to a research fellow at a Koch Industries-supported think tank to serve as the agency’s chief economist.
Jerry Ellig has worked since 1996 at the Mercatus Center at George Mason University, which bills itself as “the world's premier university source for market-oriented ideas.”
In a major 2010 story about Charles and David Koch’s influence in what she called the “war against Obama,” The New Yorker‘s Jane Mayer said that controversial… Read