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Public Knowledge Welcomes STAR Act to Protect Satellite TV Subscribers

November 6, 2019 , , , , , ,

Today, Senate Commerce Chairman Roger Wicker (R-Miss.) introduced the “Satellite Television Access Reauthorization Act of 2019 (STAR Act)” to enable satellite TV subscribers to access broadcast stations to view news, sports, and programming at a fair and competitive price. Public Knowledge welcomes the bill and applauds Sen. Wicker for working to protect the more than 870,000 satellite TV subscribers who are at risk of losing access to broadcast content vital for their communities.

The following can be attributed to Jenna Leventoff, Senior Policy Counsel at Public Knowledge:

“We are glad that Sen. Wicker has introduced legislation that will prevent hundreds of thousands of Americans from watching the ball drop on New Year’s Eve — and then suddenly losing access to the broadcast stations they rely upon for news, sports, and entertainment once the clock strikes midnight. 

“This legislation also reauthorizes the provisions that ensure that broadcasters and video distributors engage in good faith retransmission consent negotiations, provisions that, when properly enforced, help keep prices down and reduce blackouts. 

“While we had advocated for a permanent reauthorization, Sen. Wicker’s proposed five-year reauthorization will protect consumers in the short term and ensure that this issue is revisited again. At that time, if not before, Congress should consider more fundamental changes to video marketplace rules to better align the interests of creators, distributors, and viewers.”

You may view our recent letter urging Congress to provide a permanent solution for satellite TV subscribers for more information.