Any fight fans who hoped FCC chmn Kevin Martin would offer a scolding rant against cable, complete with audience gasps, awkward silences and perhaps even a few boos, was a bit disappointed at the Cable Show on Mon. In the opening keynote, the country’s top telecom regulator was actually kinda… nice. "I actually don’t dislike cable," he said. He went on to credit cable for jumpstarting broadband and forcing telcos to slash prices in telephony—all to respond to cable’s competitive threat. "As a regulator, it is this type of competition we are trying to facilitate," he said. But just as the audience started gathering wood for a Kumbaya bonfire in the center of the ballroom, Martin started dropping the bombs that everyone knew was coming. He noted that he has often aided cable when it was a new entrant into broadband and phone, but "I have and will continue to side with the new entrants trying to break into the market where you are the traditional incumbent." Martin then went on to question how cable can oppose multicast must-carry for limiting consumer choice but at the same time force customers to buy large bundles of programming rather than support mandatory a-la-carte. "You can’t have it both ways," he said. "And if you advocate subjecting broadcast channels to consumer choice then why shouldn’t cable channels be similarly subject to free market choices as well." At a press conference following the opening session, NCTA pres/CEO Kyle McSlarrow made sure to thank Martin for coming to Vegas but said he was "puzzled" by the chmn’s point on multicast and a la carte, pointing out that the former involves adding programming and the later involves taking it away from consumers. "There’s an inconsistency there," he said. "We still do have a different opinion." And for a brief, shining moment… it was Camelot.

The Daily

Subscribe

NAB Fires Back Against FCC Complaint

NAB is fighting back after the Baltimore City State’s Attorney’s Office filed an FCC complaint requesting an investigation into the content distributed by Sinclair -owned WBFF-TV. Zy Richardson , the

Read the Full Issue
The Skinny is delivered on Tuesday and focuses on the cable profession. You'll stay in the know on the headlines, topics and special issues you value most. Sign Up

Calendar

Jun 10
The FAXIES Awards – Virtual CelebrationSave the Date! - June 10, 2021
Jul 16
Diversity List – 2021 Nominations Due: July 16, 2021
Sep 10
Most Powerful Women – 2021 Nominations Due: Sept 10, 2021
Dec 7
Most Powerful Women CelebrationSave the Date!
Full Calendar

Jobs

Seeking an INDUSTRY JOB?
VIEW JOBS

Hiring? In conjunction with our sister brand, Cynopsis, we are offering hiring managers a deep pool of media-savvy, skilled candidates at a range of experience levels and sectors, The result will be an even more robust industry job board, to help both employers and job seekers.

Contact John@cynopsis.com for more information.