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Comment Sought On Black Television News Channel Waiver Request

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Released: May 15, 2014


Federal Communications Commission

News Media Information 202 / 418-0500

445 12th St., S.W.


Washington, D.C. 20554

TTY: 1-888-835-5322

DA 14-666

Released: May 15, 2014






Comment Date: June 16, 2014
Reply Comment Date: July 1, 2014

Black Television News Channel (“BTNC”) has filed a request for a three-year waiver of the
requirement that programming carried on the direct broadcast satellite (“DBS”) noncommercial reserved
channels contain no commercials.1 We request comment on the issues raised by BTNC’s waiver request.
Parties must file responses to the waiver request on or before the comment and reply comment dates
listed above. We are assigning this proceeding a Commission docket number,

MB Docket No. 14-77

, in
order to facilitate filing public comments.

All filings must reference this docket number.

Filing Requirements. Parties to this proceeding must file any documents in this proceeding using the
Commission’s Electronic Comment Filing System (ECFS):
People with Disabilities: To request materials in accessible formats for people with disabilities
(braille, large print, electronic files, audio format), send an e-mail to or call the Consumer &
Governmental Affairs Bureau at 202-418-0530 (voice), 202-418-0432 (tty).
Ex Parte Rules. This matter will be treated as a “permit-but-disclose” proceeding in accordance with
the Commission’s ex parte rules.2 Persons making ex parte presentations must file a copy of any written
presentation or a memorandum summarizing any oral presentation within two business days after the
presentation (unless a different deadline applicable to the Sunshine period applies). Persons making oral ex
presentations are reminded that memoranda summarizing the presentation must (1) list all persons
attending or otherwise participating in the meeting at which the ex parte presentation was made, and (2)

1 Black Television News Channel (“BTNC”) Request for Limited, Temporary Waiver of the Commission’s Advertising
Ban on Noncommercial National Educational Programming Suppliers, filed May 15, 2014 at 1 (“Waiver Request”).
See 47 C.F.R. § 25.701 (DBS public interest obligations); 47 U.S.C. § 335(b) (imposing certain public interest
obligations on DBS providers, including a requirement to reserve a percentage of channel capacity for noncommercial
educational or informational programming).
2 See 47 C.F.R. § 1.1206 (“Permit-but-disclose” proceedings”); see also id. §§ 1.1200-1.1216.

summarize all data presented and arguments made during the presentation.3 If the presentation consisted in
whole or in part of the presentation of data or arguments already reflected in the presenter’s written
comments, memoranda or other filings in the proceeding, the presenter may provide citations to such data or
arguments in his or her prior comments, memoranda, or other filings (specifying the relevant page and/or
paragraph numbers where such data or arguments can be found) in lieu of summarizing them in the
memorandum. Documents shown or given to Commission staff during ex parte meetings are deemed to be
written ex parte presentations and must be filed consistent with rule 1.1206(b). In proceedings governed by
rule 1.49(f) or for which the Commission has made available a method of electronic filing, written ex parte
presentations and memoranda summarizing oral ex parte presentations, and all attachments thereto, must be
filed through the electronic comment filing system available for that proceeding, and must be filed in their
native format (e.g., .doc, .xml, .ppt, searchable .pdf). Participants in this proceeding should familiarize
themselves with the Commission’s ex parte rules.
For additional information, contact Evan Baranoff,, of the Media Bureau,
Policy Division, (202) 418-7142. Direct press inquiries to Janice Wise,, of the Media
Bureau, at (202) 418-8165.
- FCC -

3 See id. § 1.1206(b). Memoranda must contain a summary of the substance of the ex parte presentation and not merely
a listing of the subjects discussed. More than a one or two sentence description of the views and arguments presented is
generally required. See id. § 1.1206(b)(1).

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