Light Reading

ACA: Little Cable Faces Some Big Issues

Jeff Baumgartner

As the president and CEO of the American Cable Association (ACA) , Matthew Polka is looking out for the little guy, relatively speaking, ensuring that cable's independent operators get a fair shake on Capitol Hill.

Ahead of The Independent Show, set for next week in Florida, Light Reading Cable caught up with Polka to discuss the biggest issues facing the ACA and its 850-plus members. Given the recent battles between cable operators and broadcasters, retransmission consent and the rising price of programming are right at the top of the list.

And it turns out that Polka and many smaller MSOs are rooting for Aereo Inc. as it dukes it out with the broadcasters in court, believing that a victory for the Barry Diller-backed startup could give cable operators some much-needed leverage when negotiating retransmission deals.


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User Rank: Light Beer
12/5/2012 | 5:27:08 PM
re: ACA: Little Cable Faces Some Big Issues

As a cable subscriber, I have always felt "cheated" by the requirement that the cable operator be required to pay a fee to rebroadcast OTA signals (which I have to pay, with markup, to my service provider).  If the OTA service is provided free to OTA users with off-air antennas, anyone should be able to use the signal at no charge; given they do not modify its content; no chage to any portion of the content, including advertising).  

The FCC should require that the cable operator (or any other carrier) that regenerates the OTA signal be required to report the number of subscribers with access to the programming.  This is much more granular of reporting than what is available from OTA households.  This would allow the programmer to recieve revenues from advertisers for CATV subscribers with access to their programming.


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