Time Warner Issued a 'Get Out of Jail Free' Card for Discriminatory Practices
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WASHINGTON DC, February 11, 2009 – Simply stated, the Media Bureau's recent decision regarding Time Warner's spin-off amounts to a 'get out of jail free' card for Time Warner Cable. From program access issues to program carriage issues, this decision will allow Time Warner Cable to continue its discriminatory practices without even the minimal level of recourse to the FCC that had previously existed.
In particular, NAIN is disappointed that the Media Bureau failed to investigate the realities of the transaction, which it could have done by asking a few simple questions -- such as why, if Time Warner's content and cable businesses are truly being separated, is Time Warner Cable moving its offices FROM Stamford, Connecticut, TO office space in Time Warner's New York headquarters. Had it asked such questions, the answers would have revealed that far from representing true deconsolidation in the media industry, the proposed transaction reduces the Commission's ability to police Time Warner Cable's anti-consumer conduct without any real public interest benefits. Those questions also would have illustrated the need for the narrow conditions proposed by NAIN and others to deal with "legacy discrimination" flowing from Time Warner's current vertically integrated operations.
NAIN and its members are considering their legal and other options, and are confident that the FCC and the Media Bureau will ultimately see the need for appropriate remedies to address the continuing threat of discrimination by Time Warner Cable.
About NAIN, the National Association of Independent Networks
The National Association of Independent Networks, NAIN, is a trade organization dedicated to addressing the needs of independent cable programming networks in a positive and proactive way. NAIN advocates for a more competitive programming environment to benefit consumers with lower prices, higher quality programming, greater diversity and more choices. The group is comprised of well established independent cable programming networks along with pre and post launched emerging networks. NAIN represents a wide range of independent programming networks from sports related channels to some of the nation's most well established high definitions to minority focused networks. A partial list of founding members includes the Hispanic Information & Telecommunications Network, The Horror Channel, and WealthTV. For more information, please visit www.NAINonline.org
For more information, contact:
NAIN Activities & PR Coordinator