FCC Grants Waiver for Bloomberg TV Positioning

Comcast Had Supported the Move
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The FCC's Media Bureau has granted Bloomberg a waiver, to allow Comcast to place Bloomberg TV adjacent to Comcast-owned CNBC but outside of so-called "news neighborhoods."

The waiver was unopposed, and supported by Comcast.

As a condition of the NBCU deal, the FCC required Comcast to carry all independent news and business channels adjacent to other news channels in its systems. After a long battle between Comcast and Bloomberg over what constituted a neighborhood and just what Comcast's obligations were under the condition, the FCC clarified the definition.

Bloomberg and Comcast each challenged the FCC decision for different reasons, but ultimately came to a settlement that included putting Bloomberg TV adjacent to CNBC in a handful of markets where that would mean moving out of a news neighborhood, as defined by the FCC as four news channels out of five adjacent channels.

"We find that there is good cause for waiver based on the specific facts presented to us because waiver will promote the parties’ private resolution of this matter in a manner that is consistent with the purpose of the condition i.e., preventing Comcast-NBCU from competitively disadvantaging placement," the Media Bureau said in granting the waiver. "Bloomberg itself is in the best position to determine that a channel position proximate CNBC accomplishes this goal."

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