By Jim Barthold, FierceCable, August 11, 2014
Broadcasters, increasingly dependent on retransmission fees paid by pay TV providers--and in turn covered by pay TV subscribers--don't like an idea being floated around the Senate Commerce Committee that would give subscribers the choice of paying for broadcast services individually.
Commerce Committee Chairman Sen. Jay Rockefeller (D.-West Va.) and ranking member Sen. John Thune (R.-S.D.) would like to see a "Local Choice" attachment applied to a revised Satellite Television Extension and Localism Act (STELA).
"Local Choice would empower consumers by allowing them to choose the commercial broadcast content that they want to pay for as part of their pay TV subscription, while ensuring that local broadcasters continue to receive full market value for their content," a Commerce Committee staffer said in a story carried by The Hill.
I still prefer Rep. Eshoo's (D-CA18) "CHOICE" act, but at least the Rockefeller-Thune "Local Choice" proposal is a step in the right direction. And it has the advantage of having a Republican as a sponsor.