Though FCC Is Looking Into Cablevison-Fox Dispute, Its Power to Force a Settlement May Be Limited

Oct 26, 2010  •  Post A Comment

Cablevision on Monday asked the Federal Communications Commission to force Fox to return its stations to its service, returning Fox-station programming to the roughly 3 million New York and Philadelphia-area subscribers who currently can’t receive it, reports the Star-Ledger.

The FCC will review documents filed late on Monday, Oct. 25, 2010, that outlined how each had negotiated in "good faith," the story says. The agency will then determine how and if it can jump in, the article adds, citing FCC spokesman Joshua Cinelli.

But the FCC may lack the ability to do anything to solve the dispute, points out Bloomberg News.  "It would be extraordinary for them to order Fox to put programming back on," says Rebecca Arbogast, an analyst with Stifel Nicolaus & Co.

She says that even if the FCC finds lack of good faith in the talks, the law probably doesn’t allow the agency to order arbitration, the article notes.

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