Kevin Martin made his 1st public appearance as FCC chmn at National yesterday, and he didn’t say much (not surprising for someone only 2 weeks on the job). He plans to follow Michael Powell’s legacy and "try to establish a level playing field in a deregulatory, not a regulatory, environment." But that doesn’t mean there won’t be any rules. As for the hot button, an extension of broadcast decency regulations would have to come from Congress, not the FCC, he told Fox News’ Stuart Varney. "This is an opportunity for the cable industry to speak not just to me, but to the consumer and the parents we hear from." He compared the situation to complaints over the lack of minority hiring in the ’90s, where cable took voluntary steps to increase diversity. — Martin later told reporters he believes family-friendly tiers could be a solution. "I’ve said for a while that I think that trying to find a way for a parent to have more tools to be able to find content that they think is appropriate for their families is important." Cable has been pushing its blocking ability as an answer to indecency concerns. — Hoop Dreams: NCTA chief Kyle McSlarrow watched the NCAA championship with Martin-thankfully, with the chmn being a UNC grad, the Tarheels won (McSlarrow, a Cornell man and soccer player, didn’t have much at stake since he considers himself a Duke fan). McSlarrow said they talked and listened a lot. He called Martin’s public appearance Mon "statesmanlike and wise."

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