Chairmnan Response Regarding Sports Blackout Rules
June 17, 2014
The Honorable John McCain
United States Senate
241 Russell Senate Office Building
Washington, D.C. 20510
Dear Senator McCain:
Thank you for your letter expressing your views on the Commission's pending
proceeding regarding the sports blackout rule. I appreciate your long-standing interest in this
As you indicate, the Commission proposed to eliminate the sports blackout rules in
December 2013. In addition to assessing whether there is still a need for the rules, we also
sought comment on our authority to eliminate, as well as the impact of such action. As you are
aware, the Commission has acknowledged that repeal of the FCC's rules alone may not end
blackouts, but it would leave carriage issues to privately negotiated arrangements. Comment
periods ended in March, and the Bureau staff is reviewing the record developed.
I share your desire for a quick resolution to this pending proceeding. I have asked the
Media Bureau staff to complete their review and to provide recommendations for the full
Commission's consideration by early fall.
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