Aereo Decisions and Retransmission Ripples

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4Q 2013 | IN-1017505


The FCC Is Mandated with Supporting the Public Interest Regarding Spectrum


The U.S. Federal Communications Commission (FCC) is mandated with managing regulatory spectrum, and is constrained with maintaining the public interest in spectrum allocation and use (including where to allocate the spectrum, managing interference, etc.) However, this is generally narrowly interpreted in terms of spectrum allocation policy, and the FCC has been reluctant to engage in additional rule-making about content availability, notably, leaving retransmission consent to business relationships between content owners and distributors. Further, the FCC has relatively narrow jurisdiction over the Internet (generally extending to net neutrality); in fact, one could argue the Internet is underregulated and regulation is fragmented, with the Fair Trade Commission (FTC) and FCC.

Landmark retransmission legislation is crafted in the terms of fair use laws (notably, the Sony Betamax cas...

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