In comments filed earlier this week, the American Cable Association responded to a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM) issued by the Copyright Office under the authority of the Satellite Television Extension and Localism Act (STELA), tasking the Copyright Office “to craft regulations that will minimize the costs for cable operators, especially smaller ones, in the event copyright owners demand audits of royalty payments submitted by Multichannel Video Programming Distributors (MVPDs).” In part, the NPRM calls on cablecos to absorb the entire cost of audits if found to have underpaid royalties by more than 5 percent, and it also proposes giving MVPDs just two weeks to prepare written responses to audit reports. Comments ACA President and CEO Matthew M. Polka, “Audits are burdensome, particularly for the audited party, and can include a lengthy back-and-forth process that would likely involve a significant amount of operator and auditor time. ACA urges the Copyright Office not to adopt rules that could result in cable operators, especially those that are small, being forced to foot the bill for these programmer-initiated audits”…Commenting on the FCC’s recent granting of the first authorizations to test in the 1,755 MHz-1,780 MHz band to help alleviate the spectrum crunch, Chairman Julius Genachowski notes, “The commission hopes to facilitate commercial mobile broadband services in that band, which would significantly benefit millions of U.S. wireless consumers and help drive the mobile  innovation economy. As we move forward, we will continue to collaborate closely with key government ?agencies, including NTIA and the Department of Defense as well as private-sector partners, to gain greater spectrum efficiency and unlock the many potential benefits of government-commercial spectrum sharing.”

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Charter’s Got Pole Problems

Charter told the FCC last week that broadband providers are having difficulties obtaining access to poles in a timely fashion, which could delay broadband deployment in unserved areas, including for Rural

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