Press Release Video Marketplace

Public Knowledge Urges FCC to Ensure a Competitive Set-top Box Marketplace for Consumers

January 19, 2016 , , ,

Today, Public Knowledge and six other public interest groups sent a letter to Federal Communications Commission Chairman Tom Wheeler, urging him to issue a notice of proposed rulemaking to ensure a competitive set-top box marketplace for consumers.

The following can be attributed to Kate Forscey, Government Affairs Associate Counsel at Public Knowledge:

“The time is ripe for the Commission to propose a rule for a modern solution in the video device marketplace. An open set-top box market is key to freeing consumers from unnecessary monthly rental fees, as it would enable them to more easily access online video content alongside their subscription TV programming. The current cable marketplace strong-arms consumers by charging exorbitant box rental fees and limiting competition amongst devices. This situation will only worsen unless the Commission resolves to move forward with a rulemaking.

“Congress directed the FCC in its last satellite reauthorization to initiate a proceeding and devise a proposal that would allow third-party devices to access pay-TV content. Last year, the Commission convened an advisory committee that enabled stakeholders on both sides to issue comments before the committee published its report. We cannot allow more delay tactics by the cable companies to waylay this process any longer. The Commission must move forward on a rulemaking now. The future of consumer choice, innovative technologies, and freedom of expression depends on it.”

You may view this letter here.