The FCC’s Enforcement Bureau has told a chief administrative law judge that Comcast should be forced to carry the Tennis Channel the same way the cabler carries its own Golf Channel and Versus networks, setting up a showdown Wednesday at the FCC in which both groups will argue their cases. Tennis Channel filed a complaint last year saying that the indie was assigned a high channel number on Comcast systems compared with Comcast’s similar sports nets, arguing that Comcast did so to favor its own properties. An agency spokesman said that each side will have 30 minutes to present arguments on the matter before Judge Richard L. Sippel tomorrow; there is no deadline for the judge’s decision, which could include upholding the FCC’s request to fine Comcast $375,000 and force it to move Tennis Channel nearer other sports channels. This is not a new fight for Comcast: It also is dealing with a complaint filed by Bloomberg TV regarding the FCC’s “neighborhood clause,” which says similar channels must be grouped together. Bloomberg says Comcast is favoring its NBCUniversal property CNBC by giving it a low channel number compared with Bloomberg’s channel.
Subscribe to Deadline Breaking News Alerts and keep your inbox happy.