US (United States) Code. Tilte 47. Chapter 5: Wire or radio communication

Codificación normativa de EEUU (Estados Unidos). Legislación federal estadounidense # Telegraphs, telephones and radiotelegraphs

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-CITE-

47 USC Sec. 521 01/06/03

-EXPCITE-

TITLE 47 - TELEGRAPHS, TELEPHONES, AND RADIOTELEGRAPHS

CHAPTER 5 - WIRE OR RADIO COMMUNICATION

SUBCHAPTER V09A - CABLE COMMUNICATIONS

Part I - General Provisions

-HEAD-

Sec. 521. Purposes

-STATUTE-

The purposes of this subchapter are to -

(1) establish a national policy concerning cable

communications;

(2) establish franchise procedures and standards which

encourage the growth and development of cable systems and which

assure that cable systems are responsive to the needs and

interests of the local community;

(3) establish guidelines for the exercise of Federal, State,

and local authority with respect to the regulation of cable

systems;

(4) assure that cable communications provide and are encouraged

to provide the widest possible diversity of information sources

and services to the public;

(5) establish an orderly process for franchise renewal which

protects cable operators against unfair denials of renewal where

the operator's past performance and proposal for future

performance meet the standards established by this subchapter;

and

(6) promote competition in cable communications and minimize

unnecessary regulation that would impose an undue economic burden

on cable systems.

-SOURCE-

(June 19, 1934, ch. 652, title VI, Sec. 601, as added Pub. L.

98-549, Sec. 2, Oct. 30, 1984, 98 Stat. 2780.)

-MISC1-

EFFECTIVE DATE

Section 9(a) of Pub. L. 98-549 provided that: "Except where

otherwise expressly provided, the provisions of this Act [enacting

this subchapter and section 611 of this title, amending sections

152, 224, 309, and 605 of this title, section 2511 of Title 18,

Crimes and Criminal Procedure, and section 1805 of Title 50, War

and National Defense, and enacting provisions set out as notes

under this section and sections 543, 605, and 609 of this title]

and the amendments made thereby shall take effect 60 days after the

date of enactment of this Act [Oct. 30, 1984]."

SHORT TITLE

For short title of Pub. L. 98-549 [enacting this subchapter] as

the "Cable Communications Policy Act of 1984", see section 1(a) of

Pub. L. 98-549, set out as a Short Title of 1984 Amendment note

under section 609 of this title.

CONGRESSIONAL FINDINGS AND POLICY FOR PUB. L. 102-385

Pub. L. 102-385, Sec. 2(a), (b), Oct. 5, 1992, 106 Stat. 1460,

1463, provided that:

"(a) Findings. - The Congress finds and declares the following:

"(1) Pursuant to the Cable Communications Policy Act of 1984

[Pub. L. 98-549, enacting this subchapter and section 611 of this

title, amending sections 152, 224, 309, and 605 of this title,

section 2511 of Title 18, Crimes and Criminal Procedure, and

section 1805 of Title 50, War and National Defense, and enacting

provisions set out as notes under this section and sections 543,

605, and 609 of this title], rates for cable television services

have been deregulated in approximately 97 percent of all

franchises since December 29, 1986. Since rate deregulation,

monthly rates for the lowest priced basic cable service have

increased by 40 percent or more for 28 percent of cable

television subscribers. Although the average number of basic

channels has increased from about 24 to 30, average monthly rates

have increased by 29 percent during the same period. The average

monthly cable rate has increased almost 3 times as much as the

Consumer Price Index since rate deregulation.

"(2) For a variety of reasons, including local franchising

requirements and the extraordinary expense of constructing more

than one cable television system to serve a particular geographic

area, most cable television subscribers have no opportunity to

select between competing cable systems. Without the presence of

another multichannel video programming distributor, a cable

system faces no local competition. The result is undue market

power for the cable operator as compared to that of consumers and

video programmers.

"(3) There has been a substantial increase in the penetration

of cable television systems over the past decade. Nearly

56,000,000 households, over 60 percent of the households with

televisions, subscribe to cable television, and this percentage

is almost certain to increase. As a result of this growth, the

cable television industry has become a dominant nationwide video

medium.

"(4) The cable industry has become highly concentrated. The

potential effects of such concentration are barriers to entry for

new programmers and a reduction in the number of media voices

available to consumers.

"(5) The cable industry has become vertically integrated; cable

operators and cable programmers often have common ownership. As a

result, cable operators have the incentive and ability to favor

their affiliated programmers. This could make it more difficult

for noncable-affiliated programmers to secure carriage on cable

systems. Vertically integrated program suppliers also have the

incentive and ability to favor their affiliated cable operators

over nonaffiliated cable operators and programming distributors

using other technologies.

"(6) There is a substantial governmental and First Amendment

interest in promoting a diversity of views provided through

multiple technology media.

"(7) There is a substantial governmental and First Amendment

interest in ensuring that cable subscribers have access to local

noncommercial educational stations which Congress has authorized,

as expressed in section 396(a)(5) of the Communications Act of

1934 [47 U.S.C. 396(a)(5)]. The distribution of unique

noncommercial, educational programming services advances that

interest.

"(8) The Federal Government has a substantial interest in

making all nonduplicative local public television services

available on cable systems because -

"(A) public television provides educational and informational

programming to the Nation's citizens, thereby advancing the

Government's compelling interest in educating its citizens;

"(B) public television is a local community institution,

supported through local tax dollars and voluntary citizen

contributions in excess of $10,800,000,000 since 1972, that

provides public service programming that is responsive to the

needs and interests of the local community;

"(C) the Federal Government, in recognition of public

television's integral role in serving the educational and

informational needs of local communities, has invested more

than $3,000,000,000 in public broadcasting since 1969; and

"(D) absent carriage requirements there is a substantial

likelihood that citizens, who have supported local public

television services, will be deprived of those services.

"(9) The Federal Government has a substantial interest in

having cable systems carry the signals of local commercial

television stations because the carriage of such signals is

necessary to serve the goals contained in section 307(b) of the

Communications Act of 1934 [47 U.S.C. 307(b)] of providing a

fair, efficient, and equitable distribution of broadcast

services.

"(10) A primary objective and benefit of our Nation's system of

regulation of television broadcasting is the local origination of

programming. There is a substantial governmental interest in

ensuring its continuation.

"(11) Broadcast television stations continue to be an important

source of local news and public affairs programming and other

local broadcast services critical to an informed electorate.

"(12) Broadcast television programming is supported by revenues

generated from advertising broadcast over stations. Such

programming is otherwise free to those who own television sets

and do not require cable transmission to receive broadcast

signals. There is a substantial governmental interest in

promoting the continued availability of such free television

programming, especially for viewers who are unable to afford

other means of receiving programming.

"(13) As a result of the growth of cable television, there has

been a marked shift in market share from broadcast television to

cable television services.

"(14) Cable television systems and broadcast television

stations increasingly compete for television advertising

revenues. As the proportion of households subscribing to cable

television increases, proportionately more advertising revenues

will be reallocated from broadcast to cable television systems.

"(15) A cable television system which carries the signal of a

local television broadcaster is assisting the broadcaster to

increase its viewership, and thereby attract additional

advertising revenues that otherwise might be earned by the cable

system operator. As a result, there is an economic incentive for

cable systems to terminate the retransmission of the broadcast

signal, refuse to carry new signals, or reposition a broadcast

signal to a disadvantageous channel position. There is a

substantial likelihood that absent the reimposition of such a

requirement, additional local broadcast signals will be deleted,

repositioned, or not carried.

"(16) As a result of the economic incentive that cable systems

have to delete, reposition, or not carry local broadcast signals,

coupled with the absence of a requirement that such systems carry

local broadcast signals, the economic viability of free local

broadcast television and its ability to originate quality local

programming will be seriously jeopardized.

"(17) Consumers who subscribe to cable television often do so

to obtain local broadcast signals which they otherwise would not

be able to receive, or to obtain improved signals. Most

subscribers to cable television systems do not or cannot maintain

antennas to receive broadcast television services, do not have

input selector switches to convert from a cable to antenna

reception system, or cannot otherwise receive broadcast

television services. The regulatory system created by the Cable

Communications Policy Act of 1984 was premised upon the continued

existence of mandatory carriage obligations for cable systems,

ensuring that local stations would be protected from

anticompetitive conduct by cable systems.

"(18) Cable television systems often are the single most

efficient distribution system for television programming. A

Government mandate for a substantial societal investment in

alternative distribution systems for cable subscribers, such as

the 'A/B' input selector antenna system, is not an enduring or

feasible method of distribution and is not in the public

interest.

"(19) At the same time, broadcast programming that is carried

remains the most popular programming on cable systems, and a

substantial portion of the benefits for which consumers pay cable

systems is derived from carriage of the signals of network

affiliates, independent television stations, and public

television stations. Also cable programming placed on channels

adjacent to popular off-the-air signals obtains a larger audience

than on other channel positions. Cable systems, therefore, obtain

great benefits from local broadcast signals which, until now,

they have been able to obtain without the consent of the

broadcaster or any copyright liability. This has resulted in an

effective subsidy of the development of cable systems by local

broadcasters. While at one time, when cable systems did not

attempt to compete with local broadcasters for programming,

audience, and advertising, this subsidy may have been

appropriate, it is so no longer and results in a competitive

imbalance between the 2 industries.

"(20) The Cable Communications Policy Act of 1984, in its

amendments to the Communications Act of 1934 [47 U.S.C. 151 et

seq.], limited the regulatory authority of franchising

authorities over cable operators. Franchising authorities are

finding it difficult under the current regulatory scheme to deny

renewals to cable systems that are not adequately serving cable

subscribers.

"(21) Cable systems should be encouraged to carry low-power

television stations licensed to the communities served by those

systems where the low-power station creates and broadcasts, as a

substantial part of its programming day, local programming.

"(b) Statement of Policy. - It is the policy of the Congress in

this Act [enacting sections 334, 335, 534 to 537, 544a, 548, and

555a of this title, amending sections 325, 332, 522, 532, 533, 541

to 544, 546, 551 to 555, and 558 of this title, and enacting

provisions set out as notes under this section and sections 325,

531, 543, and 554 of this title] to -

"(1) promote the availability to the public of a diversity of

views and information through cable television and other video

distribution media;

"(2) rely on the marketplace, to the maximum extent feasible,

to achieve that availability;

"(3) ensure that cable operators continue to expand, where

economically justified, their capacity and the programs offered

over their cable systems;

"(4) where cable television systems are not subject to

effective competition, ensure that consumer interests are

protected in receipt of cable service; and

"(5) ensure that cable television operators do not have undue

market power vis-a-vis video programmers and consumers."

SPORTS PROGRAMMING MIGRATION STUDY AND REPORT

Pub. L. 102-385, Sec. 26, Oct. 5, 1992, 106 Stat. 1502, directed

Federal Communications Commission to investigate and analyze, on a

sport-by-sport basis, trends in migration of local, regional, and

national sports programming from carriage by broadcast stations to

carriage over cable programming networks and pay-per-view systems,

including economic causes and consequences of such trends, and

further directed Commission to submit to Congress interim and final

reports of such study, no later than July 1, 1993, and July 1,

1994, respectively, along with recommendations for legislative or

regulatory activity.

APPLICABILITY OF ANTITRUST LAWS TO PUB. L. 102-385

Pub. L. 102-385, Sec. 27, Oct. 5, 1992, 106 Stat. 1503, provided

that: "Nothing in this Act [enacting sections 334, 335, 534 to 537,

544a, 548, and 555a of this title, amending sections 325, 332, 522,

532, 533, 541 to 544, 546, 551 to 555, and 558 of this title, and

enacting provisions set out as notes under this section and

sections 325, 531, 543, and 554 of this title] or the amendments

made by this Act shall be construed to alter or restrict in any

manner the applicability of any Federal or State antitrust law."

EFFECT OF CABLE COMMUNICATIONS POLICY ACT OF 1984 ON JURISDICTION

OF FEDERAL COMMUNICATIONS COMMISSION RESPECTING WIRE OR RADIO

COMMUNICATIONS THROUGH CABLE SYSTEMS

Section 3(b) of Pub. L. 98-549 provided that: "The provisions of

this Act [enacting this subchapter and section 611 of this title,

amending sections 152, 224, 309, and 605 of this title, section

2511 of Title 18, Crimes and Criminal Procedure, and section 1805

of Title 50, War and National Defense, and enacting provisions set

out as notes under this section and sections 543, 605, and 609 of

this title] and amendments made by this Act shall not be construed

to affect any jurisdiction the Federal Communications Commission

may have under the Communications Act of 1934 [this chapter] with

respect to any communication by wire or radio (other than cable

service, as defined in section 602(5) of such Act [section 522(5)

of this title]) which is provided through a cable system, or

persons or facilities engaged in such communications."

-End-

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47 USC Sec. 522 01/06/03

-EXPCITE-

TITLE 47 - TELEGRAPHS, TELEPHONES, AND RADIOTELEGRAPHS

CHAPTER 5 - WIRE OR RADIO COMMUNICATION

SUBCHAPTER V09A - CABLE COMMUNICATIONS

Part I - General Provisions

-HEAD-

Sec. 522. Definitions

-STATUTE-

For purposes of this subchapter -

(1) the term "activated channels" means those channels

engineered at the headend of a cable system for the provision of

services generally available to residential subscribers of the

cable system, regardless of whether such services actually are

provided, including any channel designated for public,

educational, or governmental use;

(2) the term "affiliate", when used in relation to any person,

means another person who owns or controls, is owned or controlled

by, or is under common ownership or control with, such person;

(3) the term "basic cable service" means any service tier which

includes the retransmission of local television broadcast

signals;

(4) the term "cable channel" or "channel" means a portion of

the electromagnetic frequency spectrum which is used in a cable

system and which is capable of delivering a television channel

(as television channel is defined by the Commission by

regulation);

(5) the term "cable operator" means any person or group of

persons (A) who provides cable service over a cable system and

directly or through one or more affiliates owns a significant

interest in such cable system, or (B) who otherwise controls or

is responsible for, through any arrangement, the management and

operation of such a cable system;

(6) the term "cable service" means -

(A) the one-way transmission to subscribers of (i) video

programming, or (ii) other programming service, and

(B) subscriber interaction, if any, which is required for the

selection or use of such video programming or other programming

service;

(7) the term "cable system" means a facility, consisting of a

set of closed transmission paths and associated signal

generation, reception, and control equipment that is designed to

provide cable service which includes video programming and which

is provided to multiple subscribers within a community, but such

term does not include (A) a facility that serves only to

retransmit the television signals of 1 or more television

broadcast stations; (B) a facility that serves subscribers

without using any public right-of-way; (C) a facility of a common

carrier which is subject, in whole or in part, to the provisions

of subchapter II of this chapter, except that such facility shall

be considered a cable system (other than for purposes of section

541(c) of this title) to the extent such facility is used in the

transmission of video programming directly to subscribers, unless

the extent of such use is solely to provide interactive on-demand

services; (D) an open video system that complies with section 573

of this title; or (E) any facilities of any electric utility used

solely for operating its electric utility system;

(8) the term "Federal agency" means any agency of the United

States, including the Commission;

(9) the term "franchise" means an initial authorization, or

renewal thereof (including a renewal of an authorization which

has been granted subject to section 546 of this title), issued by

a franchising authority, whether such authorization is designated

as a franchise, permit, license, resolution, contract,

certificate, agreement, or otherwise, which authorizes the

construction or operation of a cable system;

(10) the term "franchising authority" means any governmental

entity empowered by Federal, State, or local law to grant a

franchise;

(11) the term "grade B contour" means the field strength of a

television broadcast station computed in accordance with

regulations promulgated by the Commission;

(12) the term "interactive on-demand services" means a service

providing video programming to subscribers over switched networks

on an on-demand, point-to-point basis, but does not include

services providing video programming prescheduled by the

programming provider;

(13) the term "multichannel video programming distributor"

means a person such as, but not limited to, a cable operator, a

multichannel multipoint distribution service, a direct broadcast

satellite service, or a television receive-only satellite program

distributor, who makes available for purchase, by subscribers or

customers, multiple channels of video programming;

(14) the term "other programming service" means information

that a cable operator makes available to all subscribers

generally;

(15) the term "person" means an individual, partnership,

association, joint stock company, trust, corporation, or

governmental entity;

(16) the term "public, educational, or governmental access

facilities" means -

(A) channel capacity designated for public, educational, or

governmental use; and

(B) facilities and equipment for the use of such channel

capacity;

(17) the term "service tier" means a category of cable service

or other services provided by a cable operator and for which a

separate rate is charged by the cable operator;

(18) the term "State" means any State, or political

subdivision, or agency thereof;

(19) the term "usable activated channels" means activated

channels of a cable system, except those channels whose use for

the distribution of broadcast signals would conflict with

technical and safety regulations as determined by the Commission;

and

(20) the term "video programming" means programming provided

by, or generally considered comparable to programming provided

by, a television broadcast station.

-SOURCE-

(June 19, 1934, ch. 652, title VI, Sec. 602, as added Pub. L.

98-549, Sec. 2, Oct. 30, 1984, 98 Stat. 2780; amended Pub. L.

102-385, Sec. 2(c), Oct. 5, 1992, 106 Stat. 1463; Pub. L. 104-104,

title III, Secs. 301(a), 302(b)(2), Feb. 8, 1996, 110 Stat. 114,

124.)

-MISC1-

AMENDMENTS

1996 - Par. (6)(B). Pub. L. 104-104, Sec. 301(a)(1), inserted "or

use" after "the selection".

Par. (7)(B). Pub. L. 104-104, Sec. 301(a)(2), added subpar. (B)

and struck out former subpar. (B) which read as follows: "a

facility that serves only subscribers in 1 or more multiple unit

dwellings under common ownership, control, or management, unless

such facility or facilities uses any public right-of-way;".

Par. (7)(C) to (E). Pub. L. 104-104, Sec. 302(b)(2)(A), which

directed substitution of ", unless the extent of such use is solely

to provide interactive on-demand services; (D) an open video system

that complies with section 573 of this title; or (E)" for ", or

(D)", was executed by making the substitution for "; or (D)" to

reflect the probable intent of Congress.

Pars. (12) to (20). Pub. L. 104-104, Sec. 302(b)(2)(B), (C),

added par. (12) and redesignated former pars. (12) to (19) as (13)

to (20), respectively.

1992 - Pub. L. 102-385 added pars. (1), (12), and (18) and

redesignated former pars. (1) to (10) as (2) to (11), respectively,

former pars. (11) to (15) as (13) to (17), respectively, and former

par. (16) as (19).

EFFECTIVE DATE OF 1992 AMENDMENT

Amendment by Pub. L. 102-385 effective 60 days after Oct. 5,

1992, see section 28 of Pub. L. 102-385, set out as a note under

section 325 of this title.

EFFECTIVE DATE

Section effective 60 days after Oct. 30, 1984, except where

otherwise expressly provided, see section 9(a) of Pub. L. 98-549,

set out as a note under section 521 of this title.

-SECREF-

SECTION REFERRED TO IN OTHER SECTIONS

This section is referred to in sections 153, 271, 303a, 309, 551,

554, 571 of this title; title 17 sections 114, 1202.

-End-

-CITE-

47 USC Part II - Use of Cable Channels and Cable

Ownership Restrictions 01/06/03

-EXPCITE-

TITLE 47 - TELEGRAPHS, TELEPHONES, AND RADIOTELEGRAPHS

CHAPTER 5 - WIRE OR RADIO COMMUNICATION

SUBCHAPTER V09A - CABLE COMMUNICATIONS

Part II - Use of Cable Channels and Cable Ownership Restrictions

-HEAD-

PART II - USE OF CABLE CHANNELS AND CABLE OWNERSHIP RESTRICTIONS

-SECREF-

PART REFERRED TO IN OTHER SECTIONS

This part is referred to in section 571 of this title.

-End-

-CITE-

47 USC Sec. 531 01/06/03

-EXPCITE-

TITLE 47 - TELEGRAPHS, TELEPHONES, AND RADIOTELEGRAPHS

CHAPTER 5 - WIRE OR RADIO COMMUNICATION

SUBCHAPTER V09A - CABLE COMMUNICATIONS

Part II - Use of Cable Channels and Cable Ownership Restrictions

-HEAD-

Sec. 531. Cable channels for public, educational, or governmental

use

-STATUTE-

(a) Authority to establish requirements with respect to designation

or use of channel capacity

A franchising authority may establish requirements in a franchise

with respect to the designation or use of channel capacity for

public, educational, or governmental use only to the extent

provided in this section.

(b) Authority to require designation for public, educational, or

governmental use

A franchising authority may in its request for proposals require

as part of a franchise, and may require as part of a cable

operator's proposal for a franchise renewal, subject to section 546

of this title, that channel capacity be designated for public,

educational, or governmental use, and channel capacity on

institutional networks be designated for educational or

governmental use, and may require rules and procedures for the use

of the channel capacity designated pursuant to this section.

(c) Enforcement authority

A franchising authority may enforce any requirement in any

franchise regarding the providing or use of such channel capacity.

Such enforcement authority includes the authority to enforce any

provisions of the franchise for services, facilities, or equipment

proposed by the cable operator which relate to public, educational,

or governmental use of channel capacity, whether or not required by

the franchising authority pursuant to subsection (b) of this

section.

(d) Promulgation of rules and procedures

In the case of any franchise under which channel capacity is

designated under subsection (b) of this section, the franchising

authority shall prescribe -

(1) rules and procedures under which the cable operator is

permitted to use such channel capacity for the provision of other

services if such channel capacity is not being used for the

purposes designated, and

(2) rules and procedures under which such permitted use shall

cease.

(e) Editorial control by cable operator

Subject to section 544(d) of this title, a cable operator shall

not exercise any editorial control over any public, educational, or

governmental use of channel capacity provided pursuant to this

section, except a cable operator may refuse to transmit any public

access program or portion of a public access program which contains

obscenity, indecency, or nudity.

(f) "Institutional network" defined

For purposes of this section, the term "institutional network"

means a communication network which is constructed or operated by

the cable operator and which is generally available only to

subscribers who are not residential subscribers.

-SOURCE-

(June 19, 1934, ch. 652, title VI, Sec. 611, as added Pub. L.

98-549, Sec. 2, Oct. 30, 1984, 98 Stat. 2782; Pub. L. 104-104,

title V, Sec. 506(a), Feb. 8, 1996, 110 Stat. 136.)

-MISC1-

AMENDMENTS

1996 - Subsec. (e). Pub. L. 104-104 inserted before period at end

", except a cable operator may refuse to transmit any public access

program or portion of a public access program which contains

obscenity, indecency, or nudity".

EFFECTIVE DATE

Section effective 60 days after Oct. 30, 1984, except where

otherwise expressly provided, see section 9(a) of Pub. L. 98-549,

set out as a note under section 521 of this title.

REGULATIONS

Pub. L. 102-385, Sec. 10(c), Oct. 5, 1992, 106 Stat. 1486,

provided that: "Within 180 days following the date of the enactment

of this Act [Oct. 5, 1992], the Federal Communications Commission

shall promulgate such regulations as may be necessary to enable a

cable operator of a cable system to prohibit the use, on such

system, of any channel capacity of any public, educational, or

governmental access facility for any programming which contains

obscene material, sexually explicit conduct, or material soliciting

or promoting unlawful conduct."

-SECREF-

SECTION REFERRED TO IN OTHER SECTIONS

This section is referred to in sections 532, 534, 535, 541, 573

of this title.

-End-

-CITE-

47 USC Sec. 532 01/06/03

-EXPCITE-

TITLE 47 - TELEGRAPHS, TELEPHONES, AND RADIOTELEGRAPHS

CHAPTER 5 - WIRE OR RADIO COMMUNICATION

SUBCHAPTER V09A - CABLE COMMUNICATIONS

Part II - Use of Cable Channels and Cable Ownership Restrictions

-HEAD-

Sec. 532. Cable channels for commercial use

-STATUTE-

(a) Purpose

The purpose of this section is to promote competition in the

delivery of diverse sources of video programming and to assure that

the widest possible diversity of information sources are made

available to the public from cable systems in a manner consistent

with growth and development of cable systems.

(b) Designation of channel capacity for commercial use

(1) A cable operator shall designate channel capacity for

commercial use by persons unaffiliated with the operator in

accordance with the following requirements:

(A) An operator of any cable system with 36 or more (but not

more than 54) activated channels shall designate 10 percent of

such channels which are not otherwise required for use (or the

use of which is not prohibited) by Federal law or regulation.

(B) An operator of any cable system with 55 or more (but not

more than 100) activated channels shall designate 15 percent of

such channels which are not otherwise required for use (or the

use of which is not prohibited) by Federal law or regulation.

(C) An operator of any cable system with more than 100

activated channels shall designate 15 percent of all such

channels.

(D) An operator of any cable system with fewer than 36

activated channels shall not be required to designate channel

capacity for commercial use by persons unaffiliated with the

operator, unless the cable system is required to provide such

channel capacity under the terms of a franchise in effect on

October 30, 1984.

(E) An operator of any cable system in operation on October 30,

1984, shall not be required to remove any service actually being

provided on July 1, 1984, in order to comply with this section,

but shall make channel capacity available for commercial use as

such capacity becomes available until such time as the cable

operator is in full compliance with this section.

(2) Any Federal agency, State, or franchising authority may not

require any cable system to designate channel capacity for

commercial use by unaffiliated persons in excess of the capacity

specified in paragraph (1), except as otherwise provided in this

section.

(3) A cable operator may not be required, as part of a request

for proposals or as part of a proposal for renewal, subject to

section 546 of this title, to designate channel capacity for any

use (other than commercial use by unaffiliated persons under this

section) except as provided in sections 531 and 557 of this title,

but a cable operator may offer in a franchise, or proposal for

renewal thereof, to provide, consistent with applicable law, such

capacity for other than commercial use by such persons.

(4) A cable operator may use any unused channel capacity

designated pursuant to this section until the use of such channel

capacity is obtained, pursuant to a written agreement, by a person

unaffiliated with the operator.

(5) For the purposes of this section, the term "commercial use"

means the provision of video programming, whether or not for

profit.

(6) Any channel capacity which has been designated for public,

educational, or governmental use may not be considered as

designated under this section for commercial use for purpose of

this section.

(c) Use of channel capacity by unaffiliated persons; editorial

control; restriction on service; rules on rates, terms, and

conditions

(1) If a person unaffiliated with the cable operator seeks to use

channel capacity designated pursuant to subsection (b) of this

section for commercial use, the cable operator shall establish,

consistent with the purpose of this section and with rules

prescribed by the Commission under paragraph (4), the price, terms,

and conditions of such use which are at least sufficient to assure

that such use will not adversely affect the operation, financial

condition, or market development of the cable system.

(2) A cable operator shall not exercise any editorial control

over any video programming provided pursuant to this section, or in

any other way consider the content of such programming, except that

a cable operator may refuse to transmit any leased access program

or portion of a leased access program which contains obscenity,

indecency, or nudity and may consider such content to the minimum

extent necessary to establish a reasonable price for the commercial

use of designated channel capacity by an unaffiliated person.

(3) Any cable system channel designated in accordance with this

section shall not be used to provide a cable service that is being

provided over such system on October 30, 1984, if the provision of

such programming is intended to avoid the purpose of this section.

(4)(A) The Commission shall have the authority to -

(i) determine the maximum reasonable rates that a cable

operator may establish pursuant to paragraph (1) for commercial

use of designated channel capacity, including the rate charged

for the billing of rates to subscribers and for the collection of

revenue from subscribers by the cable operator for such use;

(ii) establish reasonable terms and conditions for such use,

including those for billing and collection; and

(iii) establish procedures for the expedited resolution of

disputes concerning rates or carriage under this section.

(B) Within 180 days after October 5, 1992, the Commission shall

establish rules for determining maximum reasonable rates under

subparagraph (A)(i), for establishing terms and conditions under

subparagraph (A)(ii), and for providing procedures under

subparagraph (A)(iii).

(d) Right of action in district court; relief; factors not to be

considered by court

Any person aggrieved by the failure or refusal of a cable

operator to make channel capacity available for use pursuant to

this section may bring an action in the district court of the

United States for the judicial district in which the cable system

is located to compel that such capacity be made available. If the

court finds that the channel capacity sought by such person has not

been made available in accordance with this section, or finds that

the price, terms, or conditions established by the cable operator

are unreasonable, the court may order such system to make available

to such person the channel capacity sought, and further determine

the appropriate price, terms, or conditions for such use consistent

with subsection (c) of this section, and may award actual damages

if it deems such relief appropriate. In any such action, the court

shall not consider any price, term, or condition established

between an operator and an affiliate for comparable services.

(e) Petition to Commission; relief

(1) Any person aggrieved by the failure or refusal of a cable

operator to make channel capacity available pursuant to this

section may petition the Commission for relief under this

subsection upon a showing of prior adjudicated violations of this

section. Records of previous adjudications resulting in a court

determination that the operator has violated this section shall be

considered as sufficient for the showing necessary under this

subsection. If the Commission finds that the channel capacity

sought by such person has not been made available in accordance

with this section, or that the price, terms, or conditions

established by such system are unreasonable under subsection (c) of

this section, the Commission shall, by rule or order, require such

operator to make available such channel capacity under price,

terms, and conditions consistent with subsection (c) of this

section.

(2) In any case in which the Commission finds that the prior

adjudicated violations of this section constitute a pattern or

practice of violations by an operator, the Commission may also

establish any further rule or order necessary to assure that the

operator provides the diversity of information sources required by

this section.

(3) In any case in which the Commission finds that the prior

adjudicated violations of this section constitute a pattern or

practice of violations by any person who is an operator of more

than one cable system, the Commission may also establish any

further rule or order necessary to assure that such person provides

the diversity of information sources required by this section.

(f) Presumption of reasonableness and good faith

In any action brought under this section in any Federal district

court or before the Commission, there shall be a presumption that

the price, terms, and conditions for use of channel capacity

designated pursuant to subsection (b) of this section are

reasonable and in good faith unless shown by clear and convincing

evidence to the contrary.

(g) Promulgation of rules

Notwithstanding sections 541(c) and 543(a) of this title, at such

time as cable systems with 36 or more activated channels are

available to 70 percent of households within the United States and

are subscribed to by 70 percent of the households to which such

systems are available, the Commission may promulgate any additional

rules necessary to provide diversity of information sources. Any

rules promulgated by the Commission pursuant to this subsection

shall not preempt authority expressly granted to franchising

authorities under this subchapter.

(h) Cable service unprotected by Constitution

Any cable service offered pursuant to this section shall not be

provided, or shall be provided subject to conditions, if such cable

service in the judgment of the franchising authority or the cable

operator is obscene, or is in conflict with community standards in

that it is lewd, lascivious, filthy, or indecent or is otherwise

unprotected by the Constitution of the United States. This

subsection shall permit a cable operator to enforce prospectively a

written and published policy of prohibiting programming that the

cable operator reasonably believes describes or depicts sexual or

excretory activities or organs in a patently offensive manner as

measured by contemporary community standards.

(i) Programming from qualified minority or educational programming

sources

(1) Notwithstanding the provisions of subsections (b) and (c) of

this section, a cable operator required by this section to

designate channel capacity for commercial use may use any such

channel capacity for the provision of programming from a qualified

minority programming source or from any qualified educational

programming source, whether or not such source is affiliated with

the cable operator. The channel capacity used to provide

programming from a qualified minority programming source or from

any qualified educational programming source pursuant to this

subsection may not exceed 33 percent of the channel capacity

designated pursuant to this section. No programming provided over a

cable system on July 1, 1990, may qualify as minority programming

or educational programming on that cable system under this

subsection.

(2) For purposes of this subsection, the term "qualified minority

programming source" means a programming source which devotes

substantially all of its programming to coverage of minority

viewpoints, or to programming directed at members of minority

groups, and which is over 50 percent minority-owned, as the term

"minority" is defined in section 309(i)(3)(C)(ii) of this title.

(3) For purposes of this subsection, the term "qualified

educational programming source" means a programming source which

devotes substantially all of its programming to educational or

instructional programming that promotes public understanding of

mathematics, the sciences, the humanities, and the arts and has a

documented annual expenditure on programming exceeding $15,000,000.

The annual expenditure on programming means all annual costs

incurred by the programming source to produce or acquire programs

which are scheduled to be televised, and specifically excludes

marketing, promotion, satellite transmission and operational costs,

and general administrative costs.

(4) Nothing in this subsection shall substitute for the

requirements to carry qualified noncommercial educational

television stations as specified under section 535 of this title.

(j) Single channel access to indecent programming

(1) Within 120 days following October 5, 1992, the Commission

shall promulgate regulations designed to limit the access of

children to indecent programming, as defined by Commission

regulations, and which cable operators have not voluntarily

prohibited under subsection (h) of this section by -

(A) requiring cable operators to place on a single channel all

indecent programs, as identified by program providers, intended

for carriage on channels designated for commercial use under this

section;

(B) requiring cable operators to block such single channel

unless the subscriber requests access to such channel in writing;

and

(C) requiring programmers to inform cable operators if the

program would be indecent as defined by Commission regulations.

(2) Cable operators shall comply with the regulations promulgated

pursuant to paragraph (1).

-SOURCE-

(June 19, 1934, ch. 652, title VI, Sec. 612, as added Pub. L.

98-549, Sec. 2, Oct. 30, 1984, 98 Stat. 2782; amended Pub. L.

102-385, Secs. 9, 10(a), (b), Oct. 5, 1992, 106 Stat. 1484, 1486;

Pub. L. 104-104, title V, Sec. 506(b), Feb. 8, 1996, 110 Stat.

137.)

-MISC1-

AMENDMENTS

1996 - Subsec. (c)(2). Pub. L. 104-104 substituted "a cable

operator may refuse to transmit any leased access program or

portion of a leased access program which contains obscenity,

indecency, or nudity and" for "an operator".

1992 - Subsec. (a). Pub. L. 102-385, Sec. 9(a), inserted "to

promote competition in the delivery of diverse sources of video

programming and" after "purpose of this section is".

Subsec. (b)(5). Pub. L. 102-385, Sec. 9(d), amended par. (5)

generally. Prior to amendment, par. (5) read as follows: "For the

purposes of this section -

"(A) the term 'activated channels' means those channels

engineered at the headend of the cable system for the provision

of services generally available to residential subscribers of the

cable system, regardless of whether such services actually are

provided, including any channel designated for public,

educational, or governmental use; and

"(B) the term 'commercial use' means the provision of video

programming, whether or not for profit."

Subsec. (c)(1). Pub. L. 102-385, Sec. 9(b)(1), inserted "and with

rules prescribed by the Commission under paragraph (4)" after

"purpose of this section".

Subsec. (c)(4). Pub. L. 102-385, Sec. 9(b)(2), added par. (4).

Subsec. (h). Pub. L. 102-385, Sec. 10(a), inserted "or the cable

operator" after "franchising authority" and inserted at end "This

subsection shall permit a cable operator to enforce prospectively a

written and published policy of prohibiting programming that the

cable operator reasonably believes describes or depicts sexual or

excretory activities or organs in a patently offensive manner as

measured by contemporary community standards."

Subsec. (i). Pub. L. 102-385, Sec. 9(c), added subsec. (i).

Subsec. (j). Pub. L. 102-385, Sec. 10(b), added subsec. (j).

EFFECTIVE DATE OF 1992 AMENDMENT

Amendment by Pub. L. 102-385 effective 60 days after Oct. 5,

1992, see section 28 of Pub. L. 102-385, set out as a note under

section 325 of this title.

EFFECTIVE DATE

Section effective 60 days after Oct. 30, 1984, except where

otherwise expressly provided, see section 9(a) of Pub. L. 98-549,

set out as a note under section 521 of this title.

-SECREF-

SECTION REFERRED TO IN OTHER SECTIONS

This section is referred to in sections 541, 543, 558, 573 of

this title.

-End-

-CITE-

47 USC Sec. 533 01/06/03

-EXPCITE-

TITLE 47 - TELEGRAPHS, TELEPHONES, AND RADIOTELEGRAPHS

CHAPTER 5 - WIRE OR RADIO COMMUNICATION

SUBCHAPTER V09A - CABLE COMMUNICATIONS

Part II - Use of Cable Channels and Cable Ownership Restrictions

-HEAD-

Sec. 533. Ownership restrictions

-STATUTE-

(a) Cable operator holding license for multichannel distribution or

offering satellite service

It shall be unlawful for a cable operator to hold a license for

multichannel multipoint distribution service, or to offer satellite

master antenna television service separate and apart from any

franchised cable service, in any portion of the franchise area

served by that cable operator's cable system. The Commission -

(1) shall waive the requirements of this paragraph for all

existing multichannel multipoint distribution services and

satellite master antenna television services which are owned by a

cable operator on October 5, 1992;

(2) may waive the requirements of this paragraph to the extent

the Commission determines is necessary to ensure that all

significant portions of a franchise area are able to obtain video

programming; and

(3) shall not apply the requirements of this subsection to any

cable operator in any franchise area in which a cable operator is

subject to effective competition as determined under section

543(l) of this title.

(b) Repealed. Pub. L. 104-104, title III, Sec. 302(b)(1), Feb. 8,

1996, 110 Stat. 124

(c) Promulgation of rules

The Commission may prescribe rules with respect to the ownership

or control of cable systems by persons who own or control other

media of mass communications which serve the same community served

by a cable system.

(d) Regulation of ownership by States or franchising authorities

Any State or franchising authority may not prohibit the ownership

or control of a cable system by any person because of such person's

ownership or control of any other media of mass communications or

other media interests. Nothing in this section shall be construed

to prevent any State or franchising authority from prohibiting the

ownership or control of a cable system in a jurisdiction by any

person (1) because of such person's ownership or control of any

other cable system in such jurisdiction; or (2) in circumstances in

which the State or franchising authority determines that the

acquisition of such a cable system may eliminate or reduce

competition in the delivery of cable service in such jurisdiction.

(e) Holding of ownership interests or exercise of editorial control

by States or franchising authorities

(1) Subject to paragraph (2), a State or franchising authority

may hold any ownership interest in any cable system.

(2) Any State or franchising authority shall not exercise any

editorial control regarding the content of any cable service on a

cable system in which such governmental entity holds ownership

interest (other than programming on any channel designated for

educational or governmental use), unless such control is exercised

through an entity separate from the franchising authority.

(f) Enhancement of effective competition

(1) In order to enhance effective competition, the Commission

shall, within one year after October 5, 1992, conduct a proceeding

-

(A) to prescribe rules and regulations establishing reasonable

limits on the number of cable subscribers a person is authorized

to reach through cable systems owned by such person, or in which

such person has an attributable interest;

(B) to prescribe rules and regulations establishing reasonable

limits on the number of channels on a cable system that can be

occupied by a video programmer in which a cable operator has an

attributable interest; and

(C) to consider the necessity and appropriateness of imposing

limitations on the degree to which multichannel video programming

distributors may engage in the creation or production of video

programming.

(2) In prescribing rules and regulations under paragraph (1), the

Commission shall, among other public interest objectives -

(A) ensure that no cable operator or group of cable operators

can unfairly impede, either because of the size of any individual

operator or because of joint actions by a group of operators of

sufficient size, the flow of video programming from the video

programmer to the consumer;

(B) ensure that cable operators affiliated with video

programmers do not favor such programmers in determining carriage

on their cable systems or do not unreasonably restrict the flow

of the video programming of such programmers to other video

distributors;

(C) take particular account of the market structure, ownership

patterns, and other relationships of the cable television

industry, including the nature and market power of the local

franchise, the joint ownership of cable systems and video

programmers, and the various types of non-equity controlling

interests;

(D) account for any efficiencies and other benefits that might

be gained through increased ownership or control;

(E) make such rules and regulations reflect the dynamic nature

of the communications marketplace;

(F) not impose limitations which would bar cable operators from

serving previously unserved rural areas; and

(G) not impose limitations which would impair the development

of diverse and high quality video programming.

(g) Combination of interests under prior law

This section shall not apply to prohibit any combination of any

interests held by any person on July 1, 1984, to the extent of the

interests so held as of such date, if the holding of such interests

was not inconsistent with any applicable Federal or State law or

regulations in effect on that date.

(h) "Media of mass communications" defined

For purposes of this section, the term "media of mass

communications" shall have the meaning given such term under

section 309(i)(3)(C)(i) of this title.

-SOURCE-

(June 19, 1934, ch. 652, title VI, Sec. 613, as added Pub. L.

98-549, Sec. 2, Oct. 30, 1984, 98 Stat. 2785; amended Pub. L.

102-385, Sec. 11, Oct. 5, 1992, 106 Stat. 1486; Pub. L. 103-414,

title III, Sec. 303(a)(22), Oct. 25, 1994, 108 Stat. 4295; Pub. L.

104-104, title II, Sec. 202(i), title III, Secs. 302(b)(1), Feb. 8,

1996, 110 Stat. 112, 124.)

-MISC1-

AMENDMENTS

1996 - Subsec. (a). Pub. L. 104-104, Sec. 202(i), redesignated

par. (2) as subsec. (a) and subpars. (A) and (B) of par. (2) as

pars. (1) and (2) of subsec. (a), respectively, added par. (3), and

struck out former par. (1) which read as follows: "It shall be

unlawful for any person to be a cable operator if such person,

directly or through 1 or more affiliates, owns or controls, the

licensee of a television broadcast station and the predicted grade

B contour of such station covers any portion of the community

served by such operator's cable system."

Subsec. (b). Pub. L. 104-104, Sec. 302(b)(1), struck out subsec.

(b), which related to common carriers, direct video programming, an

exception for rural areas, and waiver.

1994 - Subsec. (b)(2). Pub. L. 103-414 substituted "pole, line,

conduit space" for "pole line conduit space".

1992 - Subsec. (a). Pub. L. 102-385, Sec. 11(a), designated

existing provisions as par. (1) and added par. (2).

Subsec. (d). Pub. L. 102-385, Sec. 11(b), substituted "any other

media" for "any media" and inserted at end "Nothing in this section

shall be construed to prevent any State or franchising authority

from prohibiting the ownership or control of a cable system in a

jurisdiction by any person (1) because of such person's ownership

or control of any other cable system in such jurisdiction; or (2)

in circumstances in which the State or franchising authority

determines that the acquisition of such a cable system may

eliminate or reduce competition in the delivery of cable service in

such jurisdiction."

Subsecs. (f) to (h). Pub. L. 102-385, Sec. 11(c), added subsec.

(f) and redesignated former subsecs. (f) and (g) as (g) and (h),

respectively.

EFFECTIVE DATE OF 1992 AMENDMENT

Amendment by Pub. L. 102-385 effective 60 days after Oct. 5,

1992, see section 28 of Pub. L. 102-385, set out as a note under

section 325 of this title.

EFFECTIVE DATE

Section effective 60 days after Oct. 30, 1984, except where

otherwise expressly provided, see section 9(a) of Pub. L. 98-549,

set out as a note under section 521 of this title.

-SECREF-

SECTION REFERRED TO IN OTHER SECTIONS

This section is referred to in section 573 of this title.

-End-

-CITE-

47 USC Sec. 534 01/06/03

-EXPCITE-

TITLE 47 - TELEGRAPHS, TELEPHONES, AND RADIOTELEGRAPHS

CHAPTER 5 - WIRE OR RADIO COMMUNICATION

SUBCHAPTER V09A - CABLE COMMUNICATIONS

Part II - Use of Cable Channels and Cable Ownership Restrictions

-HEAD-

Sec. 534. Carriage of local commercial television signals

-STATUTE-

(a) Carriage obligations

Each cable operator shall carry, on the cable system of that

operator, the signals of local commercial television stations and

qualified low power stations as provided by this section. Carriage

of additional broadcast television signals on such system shall be

at the discretion of such operator, subject to section 325(b) of

this title.

(b) Signals required

(1) In general

(A) A cable operator of a cable system with 12 or fewer usable

activated channels shall carry the signals of at least three

local commercial television stations, except that if such a

system has 300 or fewer subscribers, it shall not be subject to

any requirements under this section so long as such system does

not delete from carriage by that system any signal of a broadcast

television station.

(B) A cable operator of a cable system with more than 12 usable

activated channels shall carry the signals of local commercial

television stations, up to one-third of the aggregate number of

usable activated channels of such system.

(2) Selection of signals

Whenever the number of local commercial television stations

exceeds the maximum number of signals a cable system is required

to carry under paragraph (1), the cable operator shall have

discretion in selecting which such stations shall be carried on

its cable system, except that -

(A) under no circumstances shall a cable operator carry a

qualified low power station in lieu of a local commercial

television station; and

(B) if the cable operator elects to carry an affiliate of a

broadcast network (as such term is defined by the Commission by

regulation), such cable operator shall carry the affiliate of

such broadcast network whose city of license reference point,

as defined in section 76.53 of title 47, Code of Federal

Regulations (in effect on January 1, 1991), or any successor

regulation thereto, is closest to the principal headend of the

cable system.

(3) Content to be carried

(A) A cable operator shall carry in its entirety, on the cable

system of that operator, the primary video, accompanying audio,

and line 21 closed caption transmission of each of the local

commercial television stations carried on the cable system and,

to the extent technically feasible, program-related material

carried in the vertical blanking interval or on subcarriers.

Retransmission of other material in the vertical blanking

internal or other nonprogram-related material (including teletext

and other subscription and advertiser-supported information

services) shall be at the discretion of the cable operator. Where

appropriate and feasible, operators may delete signal

enhancements, such as ghost-canceling, from the broadcast signal

and employ such enhancements at the system headend or headends.

(B) The cable operator shall carry the entirety of the program

schedule of any television station carried on the cable system

unless carriage of specific programming is prohibited, and other

programming authorized to be substituted, under section 76.67 or

subpart F of part 76 of title 47, Code of Federal Regulations (as

in effect on January 1, 1991), or any successor regulations

thereto.

(4) Signal quality

(A) Nondegradation; technical specifications

The signals of local commercial television stations that a

cable operator carries shall be carried without material

degradation. The Commission shall adopt carriage standards to

ensure that, to the extent technically feasible, the quality of

signal processing and carriage provided by a cable system for

the carriage of local commercial television stations will be no

less than that provided by the system for carriage of any other

type of signal.

(B) Advanced television

At such time as the Commission prescribes modifications of

the standards for television broadcast signals, the Commission

shall initiate a proceeding to establish any changes in the

signal carriage requirements of cable television systems

necessary to ensure cable carriage of such broadcast signals of

local commercial television stations which have been changed to

conform with such modified standards.

(5) Duplication not required

Notwithstanding paragraph (1), a cable operator shall not be

required to carry the signal of any local commercial television

station that substantially duplicates the signal of another local

commercial television station which is carried on its cable

system, or to carry the signals of more than one local commercial

television station affiliated with a particular broadcast network

(as such term is defined by regulation). If a cable operator

elects to carry on its cable system a signal which substantially

duplicates the signal of another local commercial television

station carried on the cable system, or to carry on its system

the signals of more than one local commercial television station

affiliated with a particular broadcast network, all such signals

shall be counted toward the number of signals the operator is

required to carry under paragraph (1).

(6) Channel positioning

Each signal carried in fulfillment of the carriage obligations

of a cable operator under this section shall be carried on the

cable system channel number on which the local commercial

television station is broadcast over the air, or on the channel

on which it was carried on July 19, 1985, or on the channel on

which it was carried on January 1, 1992, at the election of the

station, or on such other channel number as is mutually agreed

upon by the station and the cable operator. Any dispute regarding

the positioning of a local commercial television station shall be

resolved by the Commission.

(7) Signal availability

Signals carried in fulfillment of the requirements of this

section shall be provided to every subscriber of a cable system.

Such signals shall be viewable via cable on all television

receivers of a subscriber which are connected to a cable system

by a cable operator or for which a cable operator provides a

connection. If a cable operator authorizes subscribers to install

additional receiver connections, but does not provide the

subscriber with such connections, or with the equipment and

materials for such connections, the operator shall notify such

subscribers of all broadcast stations carried on the cable system

which cannot be viewed via cable without a converter box and

shall offer to sell or lease such a converter box to such

subscribers at rates in accordance with section 543(b)(3) of this

title.

(8) Identification of signals carried

A cable operator shall identify, upon request by any person,

the signals carried on its system in fulfillment of the

requirements of this section.

(9) Notification

A cable operator shall provide written notice to a local

commercial television station at least 30 days prior to either

deleting from carriage or repositioning that station. No deletion

or repositioning of a local commercial television station shall

occur during a period in which major television ratings services

measure the size of audiences of local television stations. The

notification provisions of this paragraph shall not be used to

undermine or evade the channel positioning or carriage

requirements imposed upon cable operators under this section.

(10) Compensation for carriage

A cable operator shall not accept or request monetary payment

or other valuable consideration in exchange either for carriage

of local commercial television stations in fulfillment of the

requirements of this section or for the channel positioning

rights provided to such stations under this section, except that

-

(A) any such station may be required to bear the costs

associated with delivering a good quality signal or a baseband

video signal to the principal headend of the cable system;

(B) a cable operator may accept payments from stations which

would be considered distant signals under section 111 of title

17 as indemnification for any increased copyright liability

resulting from carriage of such signal; and

(C) a cable operator may continue to accept monetary payment

or other valuable consideration in exchange for carriage or

channel positioning of the signal of any local commercial

television station carried in fulfillment of the requirements

of this section, through, but not beyond, the date of

expiration of an agreement thereon between a cable operator and

a local commercial television station entered into prior to

June 26, 1990.

(c) Low power station carriage obligation

(1) Requirement

If there are not sufficient signals of full power local

commercial television stations to fill the channels set aside

under subsection (b) of this section -

(A) a cable operator of a cable system with a capacity of 35

or fewer usable activated channels shall be required to carry

one qualified low power station; and

(B) a cable operator of a cable system with a capacity of

more than 35 usable activated channels shall be required to

carry two qualified low power stations.

(2) Use of public, educational, or governmental channels

A cable operator required to carry more than one signal of a

qualified low power station under this subsection may do so,

subject to approval by the franchising authority pursuant to

section 531 of this title, by placing such additional station on

public, educational, or governmental channels not in use for

their designated purposes.

(d) Remedies

(1) Complaints by broadcast stations

Whenever a local commercial television station believes that a

cable operator has failed to meet its obligations under this

section, such station shall notify the operator, in writing, of

the alleged failure and identify its reasons for believing that

the cable operator is obligated to carry the signal of such

station or has otherwise failed to comply with the channel

positioning or repositioning or other requirements of this

section. The cable operator shall, within 30 days of such written

notification, respond in writing to such notification and either

commence to carry the signal of such station in accordance with

the terms requested or state its reasons for believing that it is

not obligated to carry such signal or is in compliance with the

channel positioning and repositioning and other requirements of

this section. A local commercial television station that is

denied carriage or channel positioning or repositioning in

accordance with this section by a cable operator may obtain

review of such denial by filing a complaint with the Commission.

Such complaint shall allege the manner in which such cable

operator has failed to meet its obligations and the basis for

such allegations.

(2) Opportunity to respond

The Commission shall afford such cable operator an opportunity

to present data and arguments to establish that there has been no

failure to meet its obligations under this section.

(3) Remedial actions; dismissal

Within 120 days after the date a complaint is filed, the

Commission shall determine whether the cable operator has met its

obligations under this section. If the Commission determines that

the cable operator has failed to meet such obligations, the

Commission shall order the cable operator to reposition the

complaining station or, in the case of an obligation to carry a

station, to commence carriage of the station and to continue such

carriage for at least 12 months. If the Commission determines

that the cable operator has fully met the requirements of this

section, it shall dismiss the complaint.

(e) Input selector switch rules abolished

No cable operator shall be required -

(1) to provide or make available any input selector switch as

defined in section 76.5(mm) of title 47, Code of Federal

Regulations, or any comparable device; or

(2) to provide information to subscribers about input selector

switches or comparable devices.

(f) Regulations by Commission

Within 180 days after October 5, 1992, the Commission shall,

following a rulemaking proceeding, issue regulations implementing

the requirements imposed by this section. Such implementing

regulations shall include necessary revisions to update section

76.51 of title 47 of the Code of Federal Regulations.

(g) Sales presentations and program length commercials

(1) Carriage pending proceeding

Pending the outcome of the proceeding under paragraph (2),

nothing in this chapter shall require a cable operator to carry

on any tier, or prohibit a cable operator from carrying on any

tier, the signal of any commercial television station or video

programming service that is predominantly utilized for the

transmission of sales presentations or program length

commercials.

(2) Proceeding concerning certain stations

Within 270 days after October 5, 1992, the Commission,

notwithstanding prior proceedings to determine whether broadcast

television stations that are predominantly utilized for the

transmission of sales presentations or program length commercials

are serving the public interest, convenience, and necessity,

shall complete a proceeding in accordance with this paragraph to

determine whether broadcast television stations that are

predominantly utilized for the transmission of sales

presentations or program length commercials are serving the

public interest, convenience, and necessity. In conducting such

proceeding, the Commission shall provide appropriate notice and

opportunity for public comment. The Commission shall consider the

viewing of such stations, the level of competing demands for the

spectrum allocated to such stations, and the role of such

stations in providing competition to nonbroadcast services

offering similar programming. In the event that the Commission

concludes that one or more of such stations are serving the

public interest, convenience, and necessity, the Commission shall

qualify such stations as local commercial television stations for

purposes of subsection (a) of this section. In the event that the

Commission concludes that one or more of such stations are not

serving the public interest, convenience, and necessity, the

Commission shall allow the licensees of such stations a

reasonable period within which to provide different programming,

and shall not deny such stations a renewal expectancy solely

because their programming consisted predominantly of sales

presentations or program length commercials.

(h) Definitions

(1) Local commercial television station

(A) In general

For purposes of this section, the term "local commercial

television station" means any full power television broadcast

station, other than a qualified noncommercial educational

television station within the meaning of section 535(l)(1) of

this title, licensed and operating on a channel regularly

assigned to its community by the Commission that, with respect

to a particular cable system, is within the same television

market as the cable system.

(B) Exclusions

The term "local commercial television station" shall not

include -

(i) low power television stations, television translator

stations, and passive repeaters which operate pursuant to

part 74 of title 47, Code of Federal Regulations, or any

successor regulations thereto;

(ii) a television broadcast station that would be

considered a distant signal under section 111 of title 17, if

such station does not agree to indemnify the cable operator

for any increased copyright liability resulting from carriage

on the cable system; or

(iii) a television broadcast station that does not deliver

to the principal headend of a cable system either a signal

level of G6-45dBm for UHF signals or G6-49dBm for VHF

signals at the input terminals of the signal processing

equipment, if such station does not agree to be responsible

for the costs of delivering to the cable system a signal of

good quality or a baseband video signal.

(C) Market determinations

(i) For purposes of this section, a broadcasting station's

market shall be determined by the Commission by regulation or

order using, where available, commercial publications which

delineate television markets based on viewing patterns, except

that, following a written request, the Commission may, with

respect to a particular television broadcast station, include

additional communities within its television market or exclude

communities from such station's television market to better

effectuate the purposes of this section. In considering such

requests, the Commission may determine that particular

communities are part of more than one television market.

(ii) In considering requests filed pursuant to clause (i),

the Commission shall afford particular attention to the value

of localism by taking into account such factors as -

(I) whether the station, or other stations located in the

same area, have been historically carried on the cable system

or systems within such community;

(II) whether the television station provides coverage or

other local service to such community;

(III) whether any other television station that is eligible

to be carried by a cable system in such community in

fulfillment of the requirements of this section provides news

coverage of issues of concern to such community or provides

carriage or coverage of sporting and other events of interest

to the community; and

(IV) evidence of viewing patterns in cable and noncable

households within the areas served by the cable system or

systems in such community.

(iii) A cable operator shall not delete from carriage the

signal of a commercial television station during the pendency

of any proceeding pursuant to this subparagraph.

(iv) Within 120 days after the date on which a request is

filed under this subparagraph (or 120 days after February 8,

1996, if later), the Commission shall grant or deny the

request.

(2) Qualified low power station

The term "qualified low power station" means any television

broadcast station conforming to the rules established for Low

Power Television Stations contained in part 74 of title 47, Code

of Federal Regulations, only if -

(A) such station broadcasts for at least the minimum number

of hours of operation required by the Commission for television

broadcast stations under part 73 of title 47, Code of Federal

Regulations;

(B) such station meets all obligations and requirements

applicable to television broadcast stations under part 73 of

title 47, Code of Federal Regulations, with respect to the

broadcast of nonentertainment programming; programming and

rates involving political candidates, election issues,

controversial issues of public importance, editorials, and

personal attacks; programming for children; and equal

employment opportunity; and the Commission determines that the

provision of such programming by such station would address

local news and informational needs which are not being

adequately served by full power television broadcast stations

because of the geographic distance of such full power stations

from the low power station's community of license;

(C) such station complies with interference regulations

consistent with its secondary status pursuant to part 74 of

title 47, Code of Federal Regulations;

(D) such station is located no more than 35 miles from the

cable system's headend, and delivers to the principal headend

of the cable system an over-the-air signal of good quality, as

determined by the Commission;

(E) the community of license of such station and the

franchise area of the cable system are both located outside of

the largest 160 Metropolitan Statistical Areas, ranked by

population, as determined by the Office of Management and

Budget on June 30, 1990, and the population of such community

of license on such date did not exceed 35,000; and

(F) there is no full power television broadcast station

licensed to any community within the county or other political

subdivision (of a State) served by the cable system.

Nothing in this paragraph shall be construed to change the

secondary status of any low power station as provided in part 74

of title 47, Code of Federal Regulations, as in effect on October

5, 1992.

-SOURCE-

(June 19, 1934, ch. 652, title VI, Sec. 614, as added Pub. L.

102-385, Sec. 4, Oct. 5, 1992, 106 Stat. 1471; amended Pub. L.

104-104, title III, Sec. 301(d)(1), Feb. 8, 1996, 110 Stat. 116.)

-REFTEXT-

REFERENCES IN TEXT

This chapter, referred to in subsec. (g)(1), was in the original

"this Act", meaning act June 19, 1934, ch. 652, 48 Stat. 1064, as

amended, known as the Communications Act of 1934, which is

classified principally to this chapter. For complete classification

of this Act to the Code, see section 609 of this title and Tables.

-MISC1-

AMENDMENTS

1996 - Subsec. (h)(1)(C)(i). Pub. L. 104-104, Sec. 301(d)(1)(A),

substituted "by the Commission by regulation or order using, where

available, commercial publications which delineate television

markets based on viewing patterns," for "in the manner provided in

section 73.3555(d)(3)(i) of title 47, Code of Federal Regulations,

as in effect on May 1, 1991,".

Subsec. (h)(1)(C)(iv). Pub. L. 104-104, Sec. 301(d)(1)(B), added

cl. (iv) and struck out former cl. (iv) which read as follows: "In

the rulemaking proceeding required by subsection (f) of this

section, the Commission shall provide for expedited consideration

of requests filed under this subparagraph."

EFFECTIVE DATE

Section effective 60 days after Oct. 5, 1992, see section 28 of

Pub. L. 102-385, set out as an Effective Date of 1992 Amendment

note under section 325 of this title.

APPLICATION TO PENDING REQUESTS

Section 301(d)(2) of Pub. L. 104-104 provided that: "The

amendment made by paragraph (1) [amending this section] shall apply

to -

"(A) any request pending under section 614(h)(1)(C) of the

Communications Act of 1934 (47 U.S.C. 534(h)(1)(C)) on the date

of enactment of this Act [Feb. 8, 1996]; and

"(B) any request filed under that section after that date."

-SECREF-

SECTION REFERRED TO IN OTHER SECTIONS

This section is referred to in sections 325, 336, 338, 535, 543,

555, 573 of this title.

-End-

-CITE-

47 USC Sec. 535 01/06/03

-EXPCITE-

TITLE 47 - TELEGRAPHS, TELEPHONES, AND RADIOTELEGRAPHS

CHAPTER 5 - WIRE OR RADIO COMMUNICATION

SUBCHAPTER V09A - CABLE COMMUNICATIONS

Part II - Use of Cable Channels and Cable Ownership Restrictions

-HEAD-

Sec. 535. Carriage of noncommercial educational television

-STATUTE-

(a) Carriage obligations

In addition to the carriage requirements set forth in section 534

of this title, each cable operator of a cable system shall carry

the signals of qualified noncommercial educational television

stations in accordance with the provisions of this section.

(b) Requirements to carry qualified stations

(1) General requirement to carry each qualified station

Subject to paragraphs (2) and (3) and subsection (e) of this

section, each cable operator shall carry, on the cable system of

that cable operator, any qualified local noncommercial

educational television station requesting carriage.

(2) Systems with 12 or fewer channels

(A) Notwithstanding paragraph (1), a cable operator of a cable

system with 12 or fewer usable activated channels shall be

required to carry the signal of one qualified local noncommercial

educational television station; except that a cable operator of

such a system shall comply with subsection (c) of this section

and may, in its discretion, carry the signals of other qualified

noncommercial educational television stations.

(B) In the case of a cable system described in subparagraph (A)

which operates beyond the presence of any qualified local

noncommercial educational television station -

(i) the cable operator shall import and carry on that system

the signal of one qualified noncommercial educational

television station;

(ii) the selection for carriage of such a signal shall be at

the election of the cable operator; and

(iii) in order to satisfy the requirements for carriage

specified in this subsection, the cable operator of the system

shall not be required to remove any other programming service

actually provided to subscribers on March 29, 1990; except that

such cable operator shall use the first channel available to

satisfy the requirements of this subparagraph.

(3) Systems with 13 to 36 channels

(A) Subject to subsection (c) of this section, a cable operator

of a cable system with 13 to 36 usable activated channels -

(i) shall carry the signal of at least one qualified local

noncommercial educational television station but shall not be

required to carry the signals of more than three such stations,

and

(ii) may, in its discretion, carry additional such stations.

(B) In the case of a cable system described in this paragraph

which operates beyond the presence of any qualified local

noncommercial educational television station, the cable operator

shall import and carry on that system the signal of at least one

qualified noncommercial educational television station to comply

with subparagraph (A)(i).

(C) The cable operator of a cable system described in this

paragraph which carries the signal of a qualified local

noncommercial educational station affiliated with a State public

television network shall not be required to carry the signal of

any additional qualified local noncommercial educational

television stations affiliated with the same network if the

programming of such additional stations is substantially

duplicated by the programming of the qualified local

noncommercial educational television station receiving carriage.

(D) A cable operator of a system described in this paragraph

which increases the usable activated channel capacity of the

system to more than 36 channels on or after March 29, 1990,

shall, in accordance with the other provisions of this section,

carry the signal of each qualified local noncommercial

educational television station requesting carriage, subject to

subsection (e) of this section.

(c) Continued carriage of existing stations

Notwithstanding any other provision of this section, all cable

operators shall continue to provide carriage to all qualified local

noncommercial educational television stations whose signals were

carried on their systems as of March 29, 1990. The requirements of

this subsection may be waived with respect to a particular cable

operator and a particular such station, upon the written consent of

the cable operator and the station.

(d) Placement of additional signals

A cable operator required to add the signals of qualified local

noncommercial educational television stations to a cable system

under this section may do so, subject to approval by the

franchising authority pursuant to section 531 of this title, by

placing such additional stations on public, educational, or

governmental channels not in use for their designated purposes.

(e) Systems with more than 36 channels

A cable operator of a cable system with a capacity of more than

36 usable activated channels which is required to carry the signals

of three qualified local noncommercial educational television

stations shall not be required to carry the signals of additional

such stations the programming of which substantially duplicates the

programming broadcast by another qualified local noncommercial

educational television station requesting carriage. Substantial

duplication shall be defined by the Commission in a manner that

promotes access to distinctive noncommercial educational television

services.

(f) Waiver of nonduplication rights

A qualified local noncommercial educational television station

whose signal is carried by a cable operator shall not assert any

network nonduplication rights it may have pursuant to section 76.92

of title 47, Code of Federal Regulations, to require the deletion

of programs aired on other qualified local noncommercial

educational television stations whose signals are carried by that

cable operator.

(g) Conditions of carriage

(1) Content to be carried

A cable operator shall retransmit in its entirety the primary

video, accompanying audio, and line 21 closed caption

transmission of each qualified local noncommercial educational

television station whose signal is carried on the cable system,

and, to the extent technically feasible, program-related material

carried in the vertical blanking interval, or on subcarriers,

that may be necessary for receipt of programming by handicapped

persons or for educational or language purposes. Retransmission

of other material in the vertical blanking interval or on

subcarriers shall be within the discretion of the cable operator.

(2) Bandwidth and technical quality

A cable operator shall provide each qualified local

noncommercial educational television station whose signal is

carried in accordance with this section with bandwidth and

technical capacity equivalent to that provided to commercial

television broadcast stations carried on the cable system and

shall carry the signal of each qualified local noncommercial

educational television station without material degradation.

(3) Changes in carriage

The signal of a qualified local noncommercial educational

television station shall not be repositioned by a cable operator

unless the cable operator, at least 30 days in advance of such

repositioning, has provided written notice to the station and all

subscribers of the cable system. For purposes of this paragraph,

repositioning includes (A) assignment of a qualified local

noncommercial educational television station to a cable system

channel number different from the cable system channel number to

which the station was assigned as of March 29, 1990, and (B)

deletion of the station from the cable system. The notification

provisions of this paragraph shall not be used to undermine or

evade the channel positioning or carriage requirements imposed

upon cable operators under this section.

(4) Good quality signal required

Notwithstanding the other provisions of this section, a cable

operator shall not be required to carry the signal of any

qualified local noncommercial educational television station

which does not deliver to the cable system's principal headend a

signal of good quality or a baseband video signal, as may be

defined by the Commission.

(5) Channel positioning

Each signal carried in fulfillment of the carriage obligations

of a cable operator under this section shall be carried on the

cable system channel number on which the qualified local

noncommercial educational television station is broadcast over

the air, or on the channel on which it was carried on July 19,

1985, at the election of the station, or on such other channel

number as is mutually agreed upon by the station and the cable

operator. Any dispute regarding the positioning of a qualified

local noncommercial educational television station shall be

resolved by the Commission.

(h) Availability of signals

Signals carried in fulfillment of the carriage obligations of a

cable operator under this section shall be available to every

subscriber as part of the cable system's lowest priced service tier

that includes the retransmission of local commercial television

broadcast signals.

(i) Payment for carriage prohibited

(1) In general

A cable operator shall not accept monetary payment or other

valuable consideration in exchange for carriage of the signal of

any qualified local noncommercial educational television station

carried in fulfillment of the requirements of this section,

except that such a station may be required to bear the cost

associated with delivering a good quality signal or a baseband

video signal to the principal headend of the cable system.

(2) Distant signal exception

Notwithstanding the provisions of this section, a cable

operator shall not be required to add the signal of a qualified

local noncommercial educational television station not already

carried under the provision of subsection (c) of this section,

where such signal would be considered a distant signal for

copyright purposes unless such station indemnifies the cable

operator for any increased copyright costs resulting from

carriage of such signal.

(j) Remedies

(1) Complaint

Whenever a qualified local noncommercial educational television

station believes that a cable operator of a cable system has

failed to comply with the signal carriage requirements of this

section, the station may file a complaint with the Commission.

Such complaint shall allege the manner in which such cable

operator has failed to comply with such requirements and state

the basis for such allegations.

(2) Opportunity to respond

The Commission shall afford such cable operator an opportunity

to present data, views, and arguments to establish that the cable

operator has complied with the signal carriage requirements of

this section.

(3) Remedial actions; dismissal

Within 120 days after the date a complaint is filed under this

subsection, the Commission shall determine whether the cable

operator has complied with the requirements of this section. If

the Commission determines that the cable operator has failed to

comply with such requirements, the Commission shall state with

particularity the basis for such findings and order the cable

operator to take such remedial action as is necessary to meet

such requirements. If the Commission determines that the cable

operator has fully complied with such requirements, the

Commission shall dismiss the complaint.

(k) Identification of signals

A cable operator shall identify, upon request by any person,

those signals carried in fulfillment of the requirements of this

section.

(l) Definitions

For purposes of this section -

(1) Qualified noncommercial educational television station

The term "qualified noncommercial educational television

station" means any television broadcast station which -

(A)(i) under the rules and regulations of the Commission in

effect on March 29, 1990, is licensed by the Commission as a

noncommercial educational television broadcast station and

which is owned and operated by a public agency, nonprofit

foundation, corporation, or association; and

(ii) has as its licensee an entity which is eligible to

receive a community service grant, or any successor grant

thereto, from the Corporation for Public Broadcasting, or any

successor organization thereto, on the basis of the formula set

forth in section 396(k)(6)(B) of this title; or

(B) is owned and operated by a municipality and transmits

predominantly noncommercial programs for educational purposes.

Such term includes (I) the translator of any noncommercial

educational television station with five watts or higher power

serving the franchise area, (II) a full-service station or

translator if such station or translator is licensed to a channel

reserved for noncommercial educational use pursuant to section

73.606 of title 47, Code of Federal Regulations, or any successor

regulations thereto, and (III) such stations and translators

operating on channels not so reserved as the Commission

determines are qualified as noncommercial educational stations.

(2) Qualified local noncommercial educational television station

The term "qualified local noncommercial educational television

station" means a qualified noncommercial educational television

station -

(A) which is licensed to a principal community whose

reference point, as defined in section 76.53 of title 47, Code

of Federal Regulations (as in effect on March 29, 1990), or any

successor regulations thereto, is within 50 miles of the

principal headend of the cable system; or

(B) whose Grade B service contour, as defined in section

73.683(a) of such title (as in effect on March 29, 1990), or

any successor regulations thereto, encompasses the principal

headend of the cable system.

-SOURCE-

(June 19, 1934, ch. 652, title VI, Sec. 615, as added Pub. L.

102-385, Sec. 5, Oct. 5, 1992, 106 Stat. 1477.)

-MISC1-

EFFECTIVE DATE

Section effective 60 days after Oct. 5, 1992, see section 28 of

Pub. L. 102-385, set out as an Effective Date of 1992 Amendment

note under section 325 of this title.

-SECREF-

SECTION REFERRED TO IN OTHER SECTIONS

This section is referred to in sections 325, 336, 338, 532, 534,

543, 555, 573 of this title.

-End-

-CITE-

47 USC Sec. 536 01/06/03

-EXPCITE-

TITLE 47 - TELEGRAPHS, TELEPHONES, AND RADIOTELEGRAPHS

CHAPTER 5 - WIRE OR RADIO COMMUNICATION

SUBCHAPTER V09A - CABLE COMMUNICATIONS

Part II - Use of Cable Channels and Cable Ownership Restrictions

-HEAD-

Sec. 536. Regulation of carriage agreements

-STATUTE-

(a) Regulations

Within one year after October 5, 1992, the Commission shall

establish regulations governing program carriage agreements and

related practices between cable operators or other multichannel

video programming distributors and video programming vendors. Such

regulations shall -

(1) include provisions designed to prevent a cable operator or

other multichannel video programming distributor from requiring a

financial interest in a program service as a condition for

carriage on one or more of such operator's systems;

(2) include provisions designed to prohibit a cable operator or

other multichannel video programming distributor from coercing a

video programming vendor to provide, and from retaliating against

such a vendor for failing to provide, exclusive rights against

other multichannel video programming distributors as a condition

of carriage on a system;

(3) contain provisions designed to prevent a multichannel video

programming distributor from engaging in conduct the effect of

which is to unreasonably restrain the ability of an unaffiliated

video programming vendor to compete fairly by discriminating in

video programming distribution on the basis of affiliation or

nonaffiliation of vendors in the selection, terms, or conditions

for carriage of video programming provided by such vendors;

(4) provide for expedited review of any complaints made by a

video programming vendor pursuant to this section;

(5) provide for appropriate penalties and remedies for

violations of this subsection, including carriage; and

(6) provide penalties to be assessed against any person filing

a frivolous complaint pursuant to this section.

(b) "Video programming vendor" defined

As used in this section, the term "video programming vendor"

means a person engaged in the production, creation, or wholesale

distribution of video programming for sale.

-SOURCE-

(June 19, 1934, ch. 652, title VI, Sec. 616, as added Pub. L.

102-385, Sec. 12, Oct. 5, 1992, 106 Stat. 1488.)

-MISC1-

EFFECTIVE DATE

Section effective 60 days after Oct. 5, 1992, see section 28 of

Pub. L. 102-385, set out as an Effective Date of 1992 Amendment

note under section 325 of this title.

-SECREF-

SECTION REFERRED TO IN OTHER SECTIONS

This section is referred to in section 573 of this title.

-End-

-CITE-

47 USC Sec. 537 01/06/03

-EXPCITE-

TITLE 47 - TELEGRAPHS, TELEPHONES, AND RADIOTELEGRAPHS

CHAPTER 5 - WIRE OR RADIO COMMUNICATION

SUBCHAPTER V09A - CABLE COMMUNICATIONS

Part II - Use of Cable Channels and Cable Ownership Restrictions

-HEAD-

Sec. 537. Sales of cable systems

-STATUTE-

A franchising authority shall, if the franchise requires

franchising authority approval of a sale or transfer, have 120 days

to act upon any request for approval of such sale or transfer that

contains or is accompanied by such information as is required in

accordance with Commission regulations and by the franchising

authority. If the franchising authority fails to render a final

decision on the request within 120 days, such request shall be

deemed granted unless the requesting party and the franchising

authority agree to an extension of time.

-SOURCE-

(June 19, 1934, ch. 652, title VI, Sec. 617, as added Pub. L.

102-385, Sec. 13, Oct. 5, 1992, 106 Stat. 1489; amended Pub. L.

104-104, title III, Sec. 301(i), Feb. 8, 1996, 110 Stat. 117.)

-MISC1-

AMENDMENTS

1996 - Pub. L. 104-104 redesignated subsec. (e) as entire

section, substituted "A franchising authority" for "Limitation on

Duration of Franchising Authority Power To Disapprove Transfers. -

In the case of any sale or transfer of ownership of any cable

system after the 36-month period following acquisition of such

system, a franchising authority", and struck out subsecs. (a) to

(d) which related to three-year holding period requirement,

treatment of multiple transfers, exceptions to holding requirement,

and waiver authority.

EFFECTIVE DATE

Section effective 60 days after Oct. 5, 1992, see section 28 of

Pub. L. 102-385, set out as an Effective Date of 1992 Amendment

note under section 325 of this title.

-SECREF-

SECTION REFERRED TO IN OTHER SECTIONS

This section is referred to in section 573 of this title.

-End-

-CITE-

47 USC Part III - Franchising and Regulation 01/06/03

-EXPCITE-

TITLE 47 - TELEGRAPHS, TELEPHONES, AND RADIOTELEGRAPHS

CHAPTER 5 - WIRE OR RADIO COMMUNICATION

SUBCHAPTER V09A - CABLE COMMUNICATIONS

Part III - Franchising and Regulation

-HEAD-

PART III - FRANCHISING AND REGULATION

-SECREF-

PART REFERRED TO IN OTHER SECTIONS

This part is referred to in sections 571, 573 of this title.

-End-

-CITE-

47 USC Sec. 541 01/06/03

-EXPCITE-

TITLE 47 - TELEGRAPHS, TELEPHONES, AND RADIOTELEGRAPHS

CHAPTER 5 - WIRE OR RADIO COMMUNICATION

SUBCHAPTER V09A - CABLE COMMUNICATIONS

Part III - Franchising and Regulation

-HEAD-

Sec. 541. General franchise requirements

-STATUTE-

(a) Authority to award franchises; public rights-of-way and

easements; equal access to service; time for provision of

service; assurances

(1) A franchising authority may award, in accordance with the

provisions of this subchapter, 1 or more franchises within its

jurisdiction; except that a franchising authority may not grant an

exclusive franchise and may not unreasonably refuse to award an

additional competitive franchise. Any applicant whose application

for a second franchise has been denied by a final decision of the

franchising authority may appeal such final decision pursuant to

the provisions of section 555 of this title for failure to comply

with this subsection.

(2) Any franchise shall be construed to authorize the

construction of a cable system over public rights-of-way, and

through easements, which is within the area to be served by the

cable system and which have been dedicated for compatible uses,

except that in using such easements the cable operator shall ensure

-

(A) that the safety, functioning, and appearance of the

property and the convenience and safety of other persons not be

adversely affected by the installation or construction of

facilities necessary for a cable system;

(B) that the cost of the installation, construction, operation,

or removal of such facilities be borne by the cable operator or

subscriber, or a combination of both; and

(C) that the owner of the property be justly compensated by the

cable operator for any damages caused by the installation,

construction, operation, or removal of such facilities by the

cable operator.

(3) In awarding a franchise or franchises, a franchising

authority shall assure that access to cable service is not denied

to any group of potential residential cable subscribers because of

the income of the residents of the local area in which such group

resides.

(4) In awarding a franchise, the franchising authority -

(A) shall allow the applicant's cable system a reasonable

period of time to become capable of providing cable service to

all households in the franchise area;

(B) may require adequate assurance that the cable operator will

provide adequate public, educational, and governmental access

channel capacity, facilities, or financial support; and

(C) may require adequate assurance that the cable operator has

the financial, technical, or legal qualifications to provide

cable service.

(b) No cable service without franchise; exception under prior law

(1) Except to the extent provided in paragraph (2) and subsection

(f) of this section, a cable operator may not provide cable service

without a franchise.

(2) Paragraph (1) shall not require any person lawfully providing

cable service without a franchise on July 1, 1984, to obtain a

franchise unless the franchising authority so requires.

(3)(A) If a cable operator or affiliate thereof is engaged in the

provision of telecommunications services -

(i) such cable operator or affiliate shall not be required to

obtain a franchise under this subchapter for the provision of

telecommunications services; and

(ii) the provisions of this subchapter shall not apply to such

cable operator or affiliate for the provision of

telecommunications services.

(B) A franchising authority may not impose any requirement under

this subchapter that has the purpose or effect of prohibiting,

limiting, restricting, or conditioning the provision of a

telecommunications service by a cable operator or an affiliate

thereof.

(C) A franchising authority may not order a cable operator or

affiliate thereof -

(i) to discontinue the provision of a telecommunications

service, or

(ii) to discontinue the operation of a cable system, to the

extent such cable system is used for the provision of a

telecommunications service, by reason of the failure of such

cable operator or affiliate thereof to obtain a franchise or

franchise renewal under this subchapter with respect to the

provision of such telecommunications service.

(D) Except as otherwise permitted by sections 531 and 532 of this

title, a franchising authority may not require a cable operator to

provide any telecommunications service or facilities, other than

institutional networks, as a condition of the initial grant of a

franchise, a franchise renewal, or a transfer of a franchise.

(c) Status of cable system as common carrier or utility

Any cable system shall not be subject to regulation as a common

carrier or utility by reason of providing any cable service.

(d) Informational tariffs; regulation by States; "State" defined

(1) A State or the Commission may require the filing of

informational tariffs for any intrastate communications service

provided by a cable system, other than cable service, that would be

subject to regulation by the Commission or any State if offered by

a common carrier subject, in whole or in part, to subchapter II of

this chapter. Such informational tariffs shall specify the rates,

terms, and conditions for the provision of such service, including

whether it is made available to all subscribers generally, and

shall take effect on the date specified therein.

(2) Nothing in this subchapter shall be construed to affect the

authority of any State to regulate any cable operator to the extent

that such operator provides any communication service other than

cable service, whether offered on a common carrier or private

contract basis.

(3) For purposes of this subsection, the term "State" has the

meaning given it in section 153 of this title.

(e) State regulation of facilities serving subscribers in multiple

dwelling units

Nothing in this subchapter shall be construed to affect the

authority of any State to license or otherwise regulate any

facility or combination of facilities which serves only subscribers

in one or more multiple unit dwellings under common ownership,

control, or management and which does not use any public

right-of-way.

(f) Local or municipal authority as multichannel video programming

distributor

No provision of this chapter shall be construed to -

(1) prohibit a local or municipal authority that is also, or is

affiliated with, a franchising authority from operating as a

multichannel video programming distributor in the franchise area,

notwithstanding the granting of one or more franchises by such

franchising authority; or

(2) require such local or municipal authority to secure a

franchise to operate as a multichannel video programming

distributor.

-SOURCE-

(June 19, 1934, ch. 652, title VI, Sec. 621, as added Pub. L.

98-549, Sec. 2, Oct. 30, 1984, 98 Stat. 2786; amended Pub. L.

102-385, Secs. 7(a)(1), (b), (c), Oct. 5, 1992, 106 Stat. 1483;

Pub. L. 104-104, Sec. 3(d)(3), title III, Sec. 303(a), Feb. 8,

1996, 110 Stat. 61, 124.)

-MISC1-

AMENDMENTS

1996 - Subsec. (b)(3). Pub. L. 104-104, Sec. 303(a), added par.

(3).

Subsec. (d)(3). Pub. L. 104-104, Sec. 3(d)(3), substituted

"section 153" for "section 153(v)".

1992 - Subsec. (a)(1). Pub. L. 102-385, Sec. 7(a)(1), inserted

before period at end "; except that a franchising authority may not

grant an exclusive franchise and may not unreasonably refuse to

award an additional competitive franchise. Any applicant whose

application for a second franchise has been denied by a final

decision of the franchising authority may appeal such final

decision pursuant to the provisions of section 555 of this title

for failure to comply with this subsection".

Subsec. (a)(4). Pub. L. 102-385, Sec. 7(b), added par. (4).

Subsec. (b)(1). Pub. L. 102-385, Sec. 7(c)(1), inserted "and

subsection (f) of this section" after "paragraph (2)".

Subsec. (f). Pub. L. 102-385, Sec. 7(c)(2), added subsec. (f).

EFFECTIVE DATE OF 1992 AMENDMENT

Amendment by Pub. L. 102-385 effective 60 days after Oct. 5,

1992, see section 28 of Pub. L. 102-385, set out as a note under

section 325 of this title.

EFFECTIVE DATE

Section effective 60 days after Oct. 30, 1984, except where

otherwise expressly provided, see section 9(a) of Pub. L. 98-549,

set out as a note under section 521 of this title.

-SECREF-

SECTION REFERRED TO IN OTHER SECTIONS

This section is referred to in sections 522, 532, 555 of this

title.

-End-

-CITE-

47 USC Sec. 542 01/06/03

-EXPCITE-

TITLE 47 - TELEGRAPHS, TELEPHONES, AND RADIOTELEGRAPHS

CHAPTER 5 - WIRE OR RADIO COMMUNICATION

SUBCHAPTER V09A - CABLE COMMUNICATIONS

Part III - Franchising and Regulation

-HEAD-

Sec. 542. Franchise fees

-STATUTE-

(a) Payment under terms of franchise

Subject to the limitation of subsection (b) of this section, any

cable operator may be required under the terms of any franchise to

pay a franchise fee.

(b) Amount of fees per annum

For any twelve-month period, the franchise fees paid by a cable

operator with respect to any cable system shall not exceed 5

percent of such cable operator's gross revenues derived in such

period from the operation of the cable system to provide cable

services. For purposes of this section, the 12-month period shall

be the 12-month period applicable under the franchise for

accounting purposes. Nothing in this subsection shall prohibit a

franchising authority and a cable operator from agreeing that

franchise fees which lawfully could be collected for any such

12-month period shall be paid on a prepaid or deferred basis;

except that the sum of the fees paid during the term of the

franchise may not exceed the amount, including the time value of

money, which would have lawfully been collected if such fees had

been paid per annum.

(c) Itemization of subscriber bills

Each cable operator may identify, consistent with the regulations

prescribed by the Commission pursuant to section 543 of this title,

as a separate line item on each regular bill of each subscriber,

each of the following:

(1) The amount of the total bill assessed as a franchise fee

and the identity of the franchising authority to which the fee is

paid.

(2) The amount of the total bill assessed to satisfy any

requirements imposed on the cable operator by the franchise

agreement to support public, educational, or governmental

channels or the use of such channels.

(3) The amount of any other fee, tax, assessment, or charge of

any kind imposed by any governmental authority on the transaction

between the operator and the subscriber.

(d) Court actions; reflection of costs in rate structures

In any court action under subsection (c) of this section, the

franchising authority shall demonstrate that the rate structure

reflects all costs of the franchise fees.

(e) Decreases passed through to subscribers

Any cable operator shall pass through to subscribers the amount

of any decrease in a franchise fee.

(f) Itemization of franchise fee in bill

A cable operator may designate that portion of a subscriber's

bill attributable to the franchise fee as a separate item on the

bill.

(g) "Franchise fee" defined

For the purposes of this section -

(1) the term "franchise fee" includes any tax, fee, or

assessment of any kind imposed by a franchising authority or

other governmental entity on a cable operator or cable

subscriber, or both, solely because of their status as such;

(2) the term "franchise fee" does not include -

(A) any tax, fee, or assessment of general applicability

(including any such tax, fee, or assessment imposed on both

utilities and cable operators or their services but not

including a tax, fee, or assessment which is unduly

discriminatory against cable operators or cable subscribers);

(B) in the case of any franchise in effect on October 30,

1984, payments which are required by the franchise to be made

by the cable operator during the term of such franchise for, or

in support of the use of, public, educational, or governmental

access facilities;

(C) in the case of any franchise granted after October 30,

1984, capital costs which are required by the franchise to be

incurred by the cable operator for public, educational, or

governmental access facilities;

(D) requirements or charges incidental to the awarding or

enforcing of the franchise, including payments for bonds,

security funds, letters of credit, insurance, indemnification,

penalties, or liquidated damages; or

(E) any fee imposed under title 17.

(h) Uncompensated services; taxes, fees and other assessments;

limitation on fees

(1) Nothing in this chapter shall be construed to limit any

authority of a franchising authority to impose a tax, fee, or other

assessment of any kind on any person (other than a cable operator)

with respect to cable service or other communications service

provided by such person over a cable system for which charges are

assessed to subscribers but not received by the cable operator.

(2) For any 12-month period, the fees paid by such person with

respect to any such cable service or other communications service

shall not exceed 5 percent of such person's gross revenues derived

in such period from the provision of such service over the cable

system.

(i) Regulatory authority of Federal agencies

Any Federal agency may not regulate the amount of the franchise

fees paid by a cable operator, or regulate the use of funds derived

from such fees, except as provided in this section.

-SOURCE-

(June 19, 1934, ch. 652, title VI, Sec. 622, as added Pub. L.

98-549, Sec. 2, Oct. 30, 1984, 98 Stat. 2787; amended Pub. L.

102-385, Sec. 14, Oct. 5, 1992, 106 Stat. 1489; Pub. L. 104-104,

title III, Sec. 303(b), Feb. 8, 1996, 110 Stat. 125.)

-MISC1-

AMENDMENTS

1996 - Subsec. (b). Pub. L. 104-104 inserted "to provide cable

services" before period at end of first sentence.

1992 - Subsec. (c). Pub. L. 102-385 amended subsec. (c)

generally. Prior to amendment, subsec. (c) read as follows: "A

cable operator may pass through to subscribers the amount of any

increase in a franchise fee, unless the franchising authority

demonstrates that the rate structure specified in the franchise

reflects all costs of franchise fees and so notifies the cable

operator in writing."

EFFECTIVE DATE OF 1992 AMENDMENT

Amendment by Pub. L. 102-385 effective 60 days after Oct. 5,

1992, see section 28 of Pub. L. 102-385, set out as a note under

section 325 of this title.

EFFECTIVE DATE

Section effective 60 days after Oct. 30, 1984, except where

otherwise expressly provided, see section 9(a) of Pub. L. 98-549,

set out as a note under section 521 of this title.

-SECREF-

SECTION REFERRED TO IN OTHER SECTIONS

This section is referred to in section 573 of this title.

-End-

-CITE-

47 USC Sec. 543 01/06/03

-EXPCITE-

TITLE 47 - TELEGRAPHS, TELEPHONES, AND RADIOTELEGRAPHS

CHAPTER 5 - WIRE OR RADIO COMMUNICATION

SUBCHAPTER V09A - CABLE COMMUNICATIONS

Part III - Franchising and Regulation

-HEAD-

Sec. 543. Regulation of rates

-STATUTE-

(a) Competition preference; local and Federal regulation

(1) In general

No Federal agency or State may regulate the rates for the

provision of cable service except to the extent provided under

this section and section 532 of this title. Any franchising

authority may regulate the rates for the provision of cable

service, or any other communications service provided over a

cable system to cable subscribers, but only to the extent

provided under this section. No Federal agency, State, or

franchising authority may regulate the rates for cable service of

a cable system that is owned or operated by a local government or

franchising authority within whose jurisdiction that cable system

is located and that is the only cable system located within such

jurisdiction.

(2) Preference for competition

If the Commission finds that a cable system is subject to

effective competition, the rates for the provision of cable

service by such system shall not be subject to regulation by the

Commission or by a State or franchising authority under this

section. If the Commission finds that a cable system is not

subject to effective competition -

(A) the rates for the provision of basic cable service shall

be subject to regulation by a franchising authority, or by the

Commission if the Commission exercises jurisdiction pursuant to

paragraph (6), in accordance with the regulations prescribed by

the Commission under subsection (b) of this section; and

(B) the rates for cable programming services shall be subject

to regulation by the Commission under subsection (c) of this

section.

(3) Qualification of franchising authority

A franchising authority that seeks to exercise the regulatory

jurisdiction permitted under paragraph (2)(A) shall file with the

Commission a written certification that -

(A) the franchising authority will adopt and administer

regulations with respect to the rates subject to regulation

under this section that are consistent with the regulations

prescribed by the Commission under subsection (b) of this

section;

(B) the franchising authority has the legal authority to

adopt, and the personnel to administer, such regulations; and

(C) procedural laws and regulations applicable to rate

regulation proceedings by such authority provide a reasonable

opportunity for consideration of the views of interested

parties.

(4) Approval by Commission

A certification filed by a franchising authority under

paragraph (3) shall be effective 30 days after the date on which

it is filed unless the Commission finds, after notice to the

authority and a reasonable opportunity for the authority to

comment, that -

(A) the franchising authority has adopted or is administering

regulations with respect to the rates subject to regulation

under this section that are not consistent with the regulations

prescribed by the Commission under subsection (b) of this

section;

(B) the franchising authority does not have the legal

authority to adopt, or the personnel to administer, such

regulations; or

(C) procedural laws and regulations applicable to rate

regulation proceedings by such authority do not provide a

reasonable opportunity for consideration of the views of

interested parties.

If the Commission disapproves a franchising authority's

certification, the Commission shall notify the franchising

authority of any revisions or modifications necessary to obtain

approval.

(5) Revocation of jurisdiction

Upon petition by a cable operator or other interested party,

the Commission shall review the regulation of cable system rates

by a franchising authority under this subsection. A copy of the

petition shall be provided to the franchising authority by the

person filing the petition. If the Commission finds that the

franchising authority has acted inconsistently with the

requirements of this subsection, the Commission shall grant

appropriate relief. If the Commission, after the franchising

authority has had a reasonable opportunity to comment, determines

that the State and local laws and regulations are not in

conformance with the regulations prescribed by the Commission

under subsection (b) of this section, the Commission shall revoke

the jurisdiction of such authority.

(6) Exercise of jurisdiction by Commission

If the Commission disapproves a franchising authority's

certification under paragraph (4), or revokes such authority's

jurisdiction under paragraph (5), the Commission shall exercise

the franchising authority's regulatory jurisdiction under

paragraph (2)(A) until the franchising authority has qualified to

exercise that jurisdiction by filing a new certification that

meets the requirements of paragraph (3). Such new certification

shall be effective upon approval by the Commission. The

Commission shall act to approve or disapprove any such new

certification within 90 days after the date it is filed.

(7) Aggregation of equipment costs

(A) In general

The Commission shall allow cable operators, pursuant to any

rules promulgated under subsection (b)(3) of this section, to

aggregate, on a franchise, system, regional, or company level,

their equipment costs into broad categories, such as converter

boxes, regardless of the varying levels of functionality of the

equipment within each such broad category. Such aggregation

shall not be permitted with respect to equipment used by

subscribers who receive only a rate regulated basic service

tier.

(B) Revision to Commission rules; forms

Within 120 days of February 8, 1996, the Commission shall

issue revisions to the appropriate rules and forms necessary to

implement subparagraph (A).

(b) Establishment of basic service tier rate regulations

(1) Commission obligation to subscribers

The Commission shall, by regulation, ensure that the rates for

the basic service tier are reasonable. Such regulations shall be

designed to achieve the goal of protecting subscribers of any

cable system that is not subject to effective competition from

rates for the basic service tier that exceed the rates that would

be charged for the basic service tier if such cable system were

subject to effective competition.

(2) Commission regulations

Within 180 days after October 5, 1992, the Commission shall

prescribe, and periodically thereafter revise, regulations to

carry out its obligations under paragraph (1). In prescribing

such regulations, the Commission -

(A) shall seek to reduce the administrative burdens on

subscribers, cable operators, franchising authorities, and the

Commission;

(B) may adopt formulas or other mechanisms and procedures in

complying with the requirements of subparagraph (A); and

(C) shall take into account the following factors:

(i) the rates for cable systems, if any, that are subject

to effective competition;

(ii) the direct costs (if any) of obtaining, transmitting,

and otherwise providing signals carried on the basic service

tier, including signals and services carried on the basic

service tier pursuant to paragraph (7)(B), and changes in

such costs;

(iii) only such portion of the joint and common costs (if

any) of obtaining, transmitting, and otherwise providing such

signals as is determined, in accordance with regulations

prescribed by the Commission, to be reasonably and properly

allocable to the basic service tier, and changes in such

costs;

(iv) the revenues (if any) received by a cable operator

from advertising from programming that is carried as part of

the basic service tier or from other consideration obtained

in connection with the basic service tier;

(v) the reasonably and properly allocable portion of any

amount assessed as a franchise fee, tax, or charge of any

kind imposed by any State or local authority on the

transactions between cable operators and cable subscribers or

any other fee, tax, or assessment of general applicability

imposed by a governmental entity applied against cable

operators or cable subscribers;

(vi) any amount required, in accordance with paragraph (4),

to satisfy franchise requirements to support public,

educational, or governmental channels or the use of such

channels or any other services required under the franchise;

and

(vii) a reasonable profit, as defined by the Commission

consistent with the Commission's obligations to subscribers

under paragraph (1).

(3) Equipment

The regulations prescribed by the Commission under this

subsection shall include standards to establish, on the basis of

actual cost, the price or rate for -

(A) installation and lease of the equipment used by

subscribers to receive the basic service tier, including a

converter box and a remote control unit and, if requested by

the subscriber, such addressable converter box or other

equipment as is required to access programming described in

paragraph (8); and

(B) installation and monthly use of connections for

additional television receivers.

(4) Costs of franchise requirements

The regulations prescribed by the Commission under this

subsection shall include standards to identify costs attributable

to satisfying franchise requirements to support public,

educational, and governmental channels or the use of such

channels or any other services required under the franchise.

(5) Implementation and enforcement

The regulations prescribed by the Commission under this

subsection shall include additional standards, guidelines, and

procedures concerning the implementation and enforcement of such

regulations, which shall include -

(A) procedures by which cable operators may implement and

franchising authorities may enforce the regulations prescribed

by the Commission under this subsection;

(B) procedures for the expeditious resolution of disputes

between cable operators and franchising authorities concerning

the administration of such regulations;

(C) standards and procedures to prevent unreasonable charges

for changes in the subscriber's selection of services or

equipment subject to regulation under this section, which

standards shall require that charges for changing the service

tier selected shall be based on the cost of such change and

shall not exceed nominal amounts when the system's

configuration permits changes in service tier selection to be

effected solely by coded entry on a computer terminal or by

other similarly simple method; and

(D) standards and procedures to assure that subscribers

receive notice of the availability of the basic service tier

required under this section.

(6) Notice

The procedures prescribed by the Commission pursuant to

paragraph (5)(A) shall require a cable operator to provide 30

days' advance notice to a franchising authority of any increase

proposed in the price to be charged for the basic service tier.

(7) Components of basic tier subject to rate regulation

(A) Minimum contents

Each cable operator of a cable system shall provide its

subscribers a separately available basic service tier to which

subscription is required for access to any other tier of

service. Such basic service tier shall, at a minimum, consist

of the following:

(i) All signals carried in fulfillment of the requirements

of sections 534 and 535 of this title.

(ii) Any public, educational, and governmental access

programming required by the franchise of the cable system to

be provided to subscribers.

(iii) Any signal of any television broadcast station that

is provided by the cable operator to any subscriber, except a

signal which is secondarily transmitted by a satellite

carrier beyond the local service area of such station.

(B) Permitted additions to basic tier

A cable operator may add additional video programming signals

or services to the basic service tier. Any such additional

signals or services provided on the basic service tier shall be

provided to subscribers at rates determined under the

regulations prescribed by the Commission under this subsection.

(8) Buy-through of other tiers prohibited

(A) Prohibition

A cable operator may not require the subscription to any tier

other than the basic service tier required by paragraph (7) as

a condition of access to video programming offered on a per

channel or per program basis. A cable operator may not

discriminate between subscribers to the basic service tier and

other subscribers with regard to the rates charged for video

programming offered on a per channel or per program basis.

(B) Exception; limitation

The prohibition in subparagraph (A) shall not apply to a

cable system that, by reason of the lack of addressable

converter boxes or other technological limitations, does not

permit the operator to offer programming on a per channel or

per program basis in the same manner required by subparagraph

(A). This subparagraph shall not be available to any cable

operator after -

(i) the technology utilized by the cable system is modified

or improved in a way that eliminates such technological

limitation; or

(ii) 10 years after October 5, 1992, subject to

subparagraph (C).

(C) Waiver

If, in any proceeding initiated at the request of any cable

operator, the Commission determines that compliance with the

requirements of subparagraph (A) would require the cable

operator to increase its rates, the Commission may, to the

extent consistent with the public interest, grant such cable

operator a waiver from such requirements for such specified

period as the Commission determines reasonable and appropriate.

(c) Regulation of unreasonable rates

(1) Commission regulations

Within 180 days after October 5, 1992, the Commission shall, by

regulation, establish the following:

(A) criteria prescribed in accordance with paragraph (2) for

identifying, in individual cases, rates for cable programming

services that are unreasonable;

(B) fair and expeditious procedures for the receipt,

consideration, and resolution of complaints from any

franchising authority (in accordance with paragraph (3))

alleging that a rate for cable programming services charged by

a cable operator violates the criteria prescribed under

subparagraph (A), which procedures shall include the minimum

showing that shall be required for a complaint to obtain

Commission consideration and resolution of whether the rate in

question is unreasonable; and

(C) the procedures to be used to reduce rates for cable

programming services that are determined by the Commission to

be unreasonable and to refund such portion of the rates or

charges that were paid by subscribers after the filing of the

first complaint filed with the franchising authority under

paragraph (3) and that are determined to be unreasonable.

(2) Factors to be considered

In establishing the criteria for determining in individual

cases whether rates for cable programming services are

unreasonable under paragraph (1)(A), the Commission shall

consider, among other factors -

(A) the rates for similarly situated cable systems offering

comparable cable programming services, taking into account

similarities in facilities, regulatory and governmental costs,

the number of subscribers, and other relevant factors;

(B) the rates for cable systems, if any, that are subject to

effective competition;

(C) the history of the rates for cable programming services

of the system, including the relationship of such rates to

changes in general consumer prices;

(D) the rates, as a whole, for all the cable programming,

cable equipment, and cable services provided by the system,

other than programming provided on a per channel or per program

basis;

(E) capital and operating costs of the cable system,

including the quality and costs of the customer service

provided by the cable system; and

(F) the revenues (if any) received by a cable operator from

advertising from programming that is carried as part of the

service for which a rate is being established, and changes in

such revenues, or from other consideration obtained in

connection with the cable programming services concerned.

(3) Review of rate changes

The Commission shall review any complaint submitted by a

franchising authority after February 8, 1996, concerning an

increase in rates for cable programming services and issue a

final order within 90 days after it receives such a complaint,

unless the parties agree to extend the period for such review. A

franchising authority may not file a complaint under this

paragraph unless, within 90 days after such increase becomes

effective it receives subscriber complaints.

(4) Sunset of upper tier rate regulation

This subsection shall not apply to cable programming services

provided after March 31, 1999.

(d) Uniform rate structure required

A cable operator shall have a rate structure, for the provision

of cable service, that is uniform throughout the geographic area in

which cable service is provided over its cable system. This

subsection does not apply to (1) a cable operator with respect to

the provision of cable service over its cable system in any

geographic area in which the video programming services offered by

the operator in that area are subject to effective competition, or

(2) any video programming offered on a per channel or per program

basis. Bulk discounts to multiple dwelling units shall not be

subject to this subsection, except that a cable operator of a cable

system that is not subject to effective competition may not charge

predatory prices to a multiple dwelling unit. Upon a prima facie

showing by a complainant that there are reasonable grounds to

believe that the discounted price is predatory, the cable system

shall have the burden of showing that its discounted price is not

predatory.

(e) Discrimination; services for the hearing impaired

Nothing in this subchapter shall be construed as prohibiting any

Federal agency, State, or a franchising authority from -

(1) prohibiting discrimination among subscribers and potential

subscribers to cable service, except that no Federal agency,

State, or franchising authority may prohibit a cable operator

from offering reasonable discounts to senior citizens or other

economically disadvantaged group discounts; or

(2) requiring and regulating the installation or rental of

equipment which facilitates the reception of cable service by

hearing impaired individuals.

(f) Negative option billing prohibited

A cable operator shall not charge a subscriber for any service or

equipment that the subscriber has not affirmatively requested by

name. For purposes of this subsection, a subscriber's failure to

refuse a cable operator's proposal to provide such service or

equipment shall not be deemed to be an affirmative request for such

service or equipment.

(g) Collection of information

The Commission shall, by regulation, require cable operators to

file with the Commission or a franchising authority, as

appropriate, within one year after October 5, 1992, and annually

thereafter, such financial information as may be needed for

purposes of administering and enforcing this section.

(h) Prevention of evasions

Within 180 days after October 5, 1992, the Commission shall, by

regulation, establish standards, guidelines, and procedures to

prevent evasions, including evasions that result from retiering, of

the requirements of this section and shall, thereafter,

periodically review and revise such standards, guidelines, and

procedures.

(i) Small system burdens

In developing and prescribing regulations pursuant to this

section, the Commission shall design such regulations to reduce the

administrative burdens and cost of compliance for cable systems

that have 1,000 or fewer subscribers.

(j) Rate regulation agreements

During the term of an agreement made before July 1, 1990, by a

franchising authority and a cable operator providing for the

regulation of basic cable service rates, where there was not

effective competition under Commission rules in effect on that

date, nothing in this section (or the regulations thereunder) shall

abridge the ability of such franchising authority to regulate rates

in accordance with such an agreement.

(k) Reports on average prices

The Commission shall annually publish statistical reports on the

average rates for basic cable service and other cable programming,

and for converter boxes, remote control units, and other equipment,

of -

(1) cable systems that the Commission has found are subject to

effective competition under subsection (a)(2) of this section,

compared with

(2) cable systems that the Commission has found are not subject

to such effective competition.

(l) Definitions

As used in this section -

(1) The term "effective competition" means that -

(A) fewer than 30 percent of the households in the franchise

area subscribe to the cable service of a cable system;

(B) the franchise area is -

(i) served by at least two unaffiliated multichannel video

programming distributors each of which offers comparable

video programming to at least 50 percent of the households in

the franchise area; and

(ii) the number of households subscribing to programming

services offered by multichannel video programming

distributors other than the largest multichannel video

programming distributor exceeds 15 percent of the households

in the franchise area;

(C) a multichannel video programming distributor operated by

the franchising authority for that franchise area offers video

programming to at least 50 percent of the households in that

franchise area; or

(D) a local exchange carrier or its affiliate (or any

multichannel video programming distributor using the facilities

of such carrier or its affiliate) offers video programming

services directly to subscribers by any means (other than

direct-to-home satellite services) in the franchise area of an

unaffiliated cable operator which is providing cable service in

that franchise area, but only if the video programming services

so offered in that area are comparable to the video programming

services provided by the unaffiliated cable operator in that

area.

(2) The term "cable programming service" means any video

programming provided over a cable system, regardless of service

tier, including installation or rental of equipment used for the

receipt of such video programming, other than (A) video

programming carried on the basic service tier, and (B) video

programming offered on a per channel or per program basis.

(m) Special rules for small companies

(1) In general

Subsections (a), (b), and (c) of this section do not apply to a

small cable operator with respect to -

(A) cable programming services, or

(B) a basic service tier that was the only service tier

subject to regulation as of December 31, 1994,

in any franchise area in which that operator services 50,000 or

fewer subscribers.

(2) "Small cable operator" defined

For purposes of this subsection, the term "small cable

operator" means a cable operator that, directly or through an

affiliate, serves in the aggregate fewer than 1 percent of all

subscribers in the United States and is not affiliated with any

entity or entities whose gross annual revenues in the aggregate

exceed $250,000,000.

(n) Treatment of prior year losses

Notwithstanding any other provision of this section or of section

532 of this title, losses associated with a cable system (including

losses associated with the grant or award of a franchise) that were

incurred prior to September 4, 1992, with respect to a cable system

that is owned and operated by the original franchisee of such

system shall not be disallowed, in whole or in part, in the

determination of whether the rates for any tier of service or any

type of equipment that is subject to regulation under this section

are lawful.

-SOURCE-

(June 19, 1934, ch. 652, title VI, Sec. 623, as added Pub. L.

98-549, Sec. 2, Oct. 30, 1984, 98 Stat. 2788; amended Pub. L.

102-385, Sec. 3(a), Oct. 5, 1992, 106 Stat. 1464; Pub. L. 104-104,

title III, Sec. 301(b), (c), (j), (k)(1), Feb. 8, 1996, 110 Stat.

114, 116, 118.)

-MISC1-

AMENDMENTS

1996 - Subsec. (a)(7). Pub. L. 104-104, Sec. 301(j), added par.

(7).

Subsec. (c)(1)(B). Pub. L. 104-104, Sec. 301(b)(1)(A),

substituted "franchising authority (in accordance with paragraph

(3))" for "subscriber, franchising authority, or other relevant

State or local government entity".

Subsec. (c)(1)(C). Pub. L. 104-104, Sec. 301(b)(1)(B),

substituted "the first complaint filed with the franchising

authority under paragraph (3)" for "such complaint".

Subsec. (c)(3), (4). Pub. L. 104-104, Sec. 301(b)(1)(C), added

pars. (3) and (4) and struck out heading and text of former par.

(3). Text read as follows: "Except during the 180-day period

following the effective date of the regulations prescribed by the

Commission under paragraph (1), the procedures established under

subparagraph (B) of such paragraph shall be available only with

respect to complaints filed within a reasonable period of time

following a change in rates that is initiated after that effective

date, including a change in rates that results from a change in

that system's service tiers."

Subsec. (d). Pub. L. 104-104, Sec. 301(b)(2), inserted at end

"This subsection does not apply to (1) a cable operator with

respect to the provision of cable service over its cable system in

any geographic area in which the video programming services offered

by the operator in that area are subject to effective competition,

or (2) any video programming offered on a per channel or per

program basis. Bulk discounts to multiple dwelling units shall not

be subject to this subsection, except that a cable operator of a

cable system that is not subject to effective competition may not

charge predatory prices to a multiple dwelling unit. Upon a prima

facie showing by a complainant that there are reasonable grounds to

believe that the discounted price is predatory, the cable system

shall have the burden of showing that its discounted price is not

predatory."

Subsec. (l)(1)(D). Pub. L. 104-104, Sec. 301(b)(3), added subpar.

(D).

Subsec. (m). Pub. L. 104-104, Sec. 301(c), added subsec. (m).

Subsec. (n). Pub. L. 104-104, Sec. 301(k)(1), added subsec. (n).

1992 - Pub. L. 102-385 amended section generally, substituting

present provisions for former provisions which related in subsec.

(a) to limitation on regulatory power of Federal agencies, States,

or franchising authorities, in subsec. (b) to promulgation, scope,

content, periodic review, and amendment of regulations, in subsec.

(c) to regulation by franchising authority during initial 2-year

period, in subsec. (d) to automatic granting of rate increase

requests upon agency inaction within 180-day period, in subsec. (e)

to additional increases in rates and to reduction by amount of

increase under franchise provisions, in subsec. (f) to

nondiscrimination and facilitation of reception by hearing-impaired

individuals, in subsec. (g) to continued effectiveness of

limitation or the preemption of regulation under prior State law,

and in subsec. (h) to reports and recommendations to Congress.

EFFECTIVE DATE OF 1996 AMENDMENT

Section 301(k)(2) of Pub. L. 104-104 provided that: "The

amendment made by paragraph (1) [amending this section] shall take

effect on the date of enactment of this Act [Feb. 8, 1996] and

shall be applicable to any rate proposal filed on or after

September 4, 1993, upon which no final action has been taken by

December 1, 1995."

EFFECTIVE DATE OF 1992 AMENDMENT

Section 3(b) of Pub. L. 102-385 provided that: "The amendment

made by subsection (a) [amending this section] shall take effect

180 days after the date of enactment of this Act [Oct. 5, 1992],

except that the authority of the Federal Communications Commission

to prescribe regulations is effective on such date of enactment."

EFFECTIVE DATE

Section effective 60 days after Oct. 30, 1984, except where

otherwise expressly provided, see section 9(a) of Pub. L. 98-549,

set out as a note under section 521 of this title.

RESTORATION, RETIERMENT AND REPRICING OF SERVICE PREVIOUSLY

ELIMINATED, RETIERED, OR REPRICED

Section 9(b) of Pub. L. 98-549 provided that: "Nothing in section

623 or 624 of the Communications Act of 1934 [sections 543 and 544

of this title], as added by this Act, shall be construed to allow a

franchising authority, or a State or any political subdivision of a

State, to require a cable operator to restore, retier, or reprice

any cable service which was lawfully eliminated, retiered, or

repriced as of September 26, 1984."

-SECREF-

SECTION REFERRED TO IN OTHER SECTIONS

This section is referred to in sections 325, 532, 533, 534, 542,

545, 552, 573 of this title.

-End-

-CITE-

47 USC Sec. 544 01/06/03

-EXPCITE-

TITLE 47 - TELEGRAPHS, TELEPHONES, AND RADIOTELEGRAPHS

CHAPTER 5 - WIRE OR RADIO COMMUNICATION

SUBCHAPTER V09A - CABLE COMMUNICATIONS

Part III - Franchising and Regulation

-HEAD-

Sec. 544. Regulation of services, facilities, and equipment

-STATUTE-

(a) Regulation by franchising authority

Any franchising authority may not regulate the services,

facilities, and equipment provided by a cable operator except to

the extent consistent with this subchapter.

(b) Requests for proposals; establishment and enforcement of

requirements

In the case of any franchise granted after the effective date of

this subchapter, the franchising authority, to the extent related

to the establishment or operation of a cable system -

(1) in its request for proposals for a franchise (including

requests for renewal proposals, subject to section 546 of this

title), may establish requirements for facilities and equipment,

but may not, except as provided in subsection (h) of this

section, establish requirements for video programming or other

information services; and

(2) subject to section 545 of this title, may enforce any

requirements contained within the franchise -

(A) for facilities and equipment; and

(B) for broad categories of video programming or other

services.

(c) Enforcement authority respecting franchises effective under

prior law

In the case of any franchise in effect on the effective date of

this subchapter, the franchising authority may, subject to section

545 of this title, enforce requirements contained within the

franchise for the provision of services, facilities, and equipment,

whether or not related to the establishment or operation of a cable

system.

(d) Cable service unprotected by Constitution; blockage of premium

channel upon request

(1) Nothing in this subchapter shall be construed as prohibiting

a franchising authority and a cable operator from specifying, in a

franchise or renewal thereof, that certain cable services shall not

be provided or shall be provided subject to conditions, if such

cable services are obscene or are otherwise unprotected by the

Constitution of the United States.

(2) In order to restrict the viewing of of of (!1) programming

which is obscene or indecent, upon the request of a subscriber, a

cable operator shall provide (by sale or lease) a device by which

the subscriber can prohibit viewing of a particular cable service

during periods selected by that subscriber.

(3)(A) If a cable operator provides a premium channel without

charge to cable subscribers who do not subscribe to such premium

channel, the cable operator shall, not later than 30 days before

such premium channel is provided without charge -

(i) notify all cable subscribers that the cable operator plans

to provide a premium channel without charge;

(ii) notify all cable subscribers when the cable operator plans

to offer a premium channel without charge;

(iii) notify all cable subscribers that they have a right to

request that the channel carrying the premium channel be blocked;

and

(iv) block the channel carrying the premium channel upon the

request of a subscriber.

(B) For the purpose of this section, the term "premium channel"

shall mean any pay service offered on a per channel or per program

basis, which offers movies rated by the Motion Picture Association

of America as X, NC-17, or R.

(e) Technical standards

Within one year after October 5, 1992, the Commission shall

prescribe regulations which establish minimum technical standards

relating to cable systems' technical operation and signal quality.

The Commission shall update such standards periodically to reflect

improvements in technology. No State or franchising authority may

prohibit, condition, or restrict a cable system's use of any type

of subscriber equipment or any transmission technology.

(f) Limitation on regulatory powers of Federal agencies, States, or

franchising authorities; exceptions

(1) Any Federal agency, State, or franchising authority may not

impose requirements regarding the provision or content of cable

services, except as expressly provided in this subchapter.

(2) Paragraph (1) shall not apply to -

(A) any rule, regulation, or order issued under any Federal

law, as such rule, regulation, or order (i) was in effect on

September 21, 1983, or (ii) may be amended after such date if the

rule, regulation, or order as amended is not inconsistent with

the express provisions of this subchapter; and

(B) any rule, regulation, or order under title 17.

(g) Access to emergency information

Notwithstanding any such rule, regulation, or order, each cable

operator shall comply with such standards as the Commission shall

prescribe to ensure that viewers of video programming on cable

systems are afforded the same emergency information as is afforded

by the emergency broadcasting system pursuant to Commission

regulations in subpart G of part 73, title 47, Code of Federal

Regulations.

(h) Notice of changes in and comments on services

A franchising authority may require a cable operator to do any

one or more of the following:

(1) Provide 30 days' advance written notice of any change in

channel assignment or in the video programming service provided

over any such channel.

(2) Inform subscribers, via written notice, that comments on

programming and channel position changes are being recorded by a

designated office of the franchising authority.

(i) Disposition of cable upon termination of service

Within 120 days after October 5, 1992, the Commission shall

prescribe rules concerning the disposition, after a subscriber to a

cable system terminates service, of any cable installed by the

cable operator within the premises of such subscriber.

-SOURCE-

(June 19, 1934, ch. 652, title VI, Sec. 624, as added Pub. L.

98-549, Sec. 2, Oct. 30, 1984, 98 Stat. 2789; amended Pub. L.

102-385, Secs. 15, 16, Oct. 5, 1992, 106 Stat. 1490; Pub. L.

103-414, title III, Secs. 303(a)(23), 304(a)(12), Oct. 25, 1994,

108 Stat. 4295, 4297; Pub. L. 104-104, title III, Sec. 301(e), Feb.

8, 1996, 110 Stat. 116.)

-REFTEXT-

REFERENCES IN TEXT

For "the effective date of this subchapter", referred to in

subsecs. (b) and (c), as 60 days after Oct. 30, 1984, except where

otherwise expressly provided, see section 9(a) of Pub. L. 98-549,

set out as an Effective Date note under section 521 of this title.

-MISC1-

AMENDMENTS

1996 - Subsec. (e). Pub. L. 104-104 substituted "No State or

franchising authority may prohibit, condition, or restrict a cable

system's use of any type of subscriber equipment or any

transmission technology." for "A franchising authority may require

as part of a franchise (including a modification, renewal, or

transfer thereof) provisions for the enforcement of the standards

prescribed under this subsection. A franchising authority may apply

to the Commission for a waiver to impose standards that are more

stringent than the standards prescribed by the Commission under

this subsection."

1994 - Subsec. (d)(2). Pub. L. 103-414, Sec. 304(a)(12), struck

out designation "(A)", inserted "of" after "restrict the viewing",

and struck out subpar. (B) which read as follows: "Subparagraph (A)

shall take effect 180 days after the effective date of this

subchapter."

Pub. L. 103-414, Sec. 303(a)(23), inserted "of" after "restrict

the viewing" in subpar. (A).

1992 - Subsec. (b)(1). Pub. L. 102-385, Sec. 16(c)(1), inserted

", except as provided in subsection (h) of this section," after

"but may not".

Subsec. (d)(3). Pub. L. 102-385, Sec. 15, added par. (3).

Subsec. (e). Pub. L. 102-385, Sec. 16(a), amended subsec. (e)

generally. Prior to amendment, subsec. (e) read as follows: "The

Commission may establish technical standards relating to the

facilities and equipment of cable systems which a franchising

authority may require in the franchise."

Subsec. (g). Pub. L. 102-385, Sec. 16(b), added subsec. (g).

Subsec. (h). Pub. L. 102-385, Sec. 16(c)(2), added subsec. (h).

Subsec. (i). Pub. L. 102-385, Sec. 16(d), added subsec. (i).

EFFECTIVE DATE OF 1992 AMENDMENT

Amendment by Pub. L. 102-385 effective 60 days after Oct. 5,

1992, see section 28 of Pub. L. 102-385, set out as a note under

section 325 of this title.

EFFECTIVE DATE

Section effective 60 days after Oct. 30, 1984, except where

otherwise expressly provided, see section 9(a) of Pub. L. 98-549,

set out as a note under section 521 of this title.

RESTORATION, RETIERMENT AND REPRICING OF SERVICE PREVIOUSLY

ELIMINATED, RETIERED, OR REPRICED

Section not to be construed to allow a franchising authority, or

a State or political subdivision thereof, to require a cable

operator to restore, retier or reprice cable service previously

eliminated, retiered, or repriced as of Sept. 26, 1984, see section

9(b) of Pub. L. 98-549, set out as a note under section 543 of this

title.

-SECREF-

SECTION REFERRED TO IN OTHER SECTIONS

This section is referred to in sections 531, 546 of this title.

-FOOTNOTE-

(!1) So in original.

-End-

-CITE-

47 USC Sec. 544a 01/06/03

-EXPCITE-

TITLE 47 - TELEGRAPHS, TELEPHONES, AND RADIOTELEGRAPHS

CHAPTER 5 - WIRE OR RADIO COMMUNICATION

SUBCHAPTER V09A - CABLE COMMUNICATIONS

Part III - Franchising and Regulation

-HEAD-

Sec. 544a. Consumer electronics equipment compatibility

-STATUTE-

(a) Findings

The Congress finds that -

(1) new and recent models of television receivers and video

cassette recorders often contain premium features and functions

that are disabled or inhibited because of cable scrambling,

encoding, or encryption technologies and devices, including

converter boxes and remote control devices required by cable

operators to receive programming;

(2) if these problems are allowed to persist, consumers will be

less likely to purchase, and electronics equipment manufacturers

will be less likely to develop, manufacture, or offer for sale,

television receivers and video cassette recorders with new and

innovative features and functions;

(3) cable operators should use technologies that will prevent

signal thefts while permitting consumers to benefit from such

features and functions in such receivers and recorders; and

(4) compatibility among televisions, video cassette recorders,

and cable systems can be assured with narrow technical standards

that mandate a minimum degree of common design and operation,

leaving all features, functions, protocols, and other product and

service options for selection through open competition in the

market.

(b) Compatible interfaces

(1) Report; regulations

Within 1 year after October 5, 1992, the Commission, in

consultation with representatives of the cable industry and the

consumer electronics industry, shall report to Congress on means

of assuring compatibility between televisions and video cassette

recorders and cable systems, consistent with the need to prevent

theft of cable service, so that cable subscribers will be able to

enjoy the full benefit of both the programming available on cable

systems and the functions available on their televisions and

video cassette recorders. Within 180 days after the date of

submission of the report required by this subsection, the

Commission shall issue such regulations as are necessary to

assure such compatibility.

(2) Scrambling and encryption

In issuing the regulations referred to in paragraph (1), the

Commission shall determine whether and, if so, under what

circumstances to permit cable systems to scramble or encrypt

signals or to restrict cable systems in the manner in which they

encrypt or scramble signals, except that the Commission shall not

limit the use of scrambling or encryption technology where the

use of such technology does not interfere with the functions of

subscribers' television receivers or video cassette recorders.

(c) Rulemaking requirements

(1) Factors to be considered

In prescribing the regulations required by this section, the

Commission shall consider -

(A) the need to maximize open competition in the market for

all features, functions, protocols, and other product and

service options of converter boxes and other cable converters

unrelated to the descrambling or decryption of cable television

signals;

(B) the costs and benefits to consumers of imposing

compatibility requirements on cable operators and television

manufacturers in a manner that, while providing effective

protection against theft or unauthorized reception of cable

service, will minimize interference with or nullification of

the special functions of subscribers' television receivers or

video cassette recorders, including functions that permit the

subscriber -

(i) to watch a program on one channel while simultaneously

using a video cassette recorder to tape a program on another

channel;

(ii) to use a video cassette recorder to tape two

consecutive programs that appear on different channels; and

(iii) to use advanced television picture generation and

display features; and

(C) the need for cable operators to protect the integrity of

the signals transmitted by the cable operator against theft or

to protect such signals against unauthorized reception.

(2) Regulations required

The regulations prescribed by the Commission under this section

shall include such regulations as are necessary -

(A) to specify the technical requirements with which a

television receiver or video cassette recorder must comply in

order to be sold as "cable compatible" or "cable ready";

(B) to require cable operators offering channels whose

reception requires a converter box -

(i) to notify subscribers that they may be unable to

benefit from the special functions of their television

receivers and video cassette recorders, including functions

that permit subscribers -

(I) to watch a program on one channel while

simultaneously using a video cassette recorder to tape a

program on another channel;

(II) to use a video cassette recorder to tape two

consecutive programs that appear on different channels; and

(III) to use advanced television picture generation and

display features; and

(ii) to the extent technically and economically feasible,

to offer subscribers the option of having all other channels

delivered directly to the subscribers' television receivers

or video cassette recorders without passing through the

converter box;

(C) to promote the commercial availability, from cable

operators and retail vendors that are not affiliated with cable

systems, of converter boxes and of remote control devices

compatible with converter boxes;

(D) to ensure that any standards or regulations developed

under the authority of this section to ensure compatibility

between televisions, video cassette recorders, and cable

systems do not affect features, functions, protocols, and other

product and service options other than those specified in

paragraph (1)(B), including telecommunications interface

equipment, home automation communications, and computer network

services;

(E) to require a cable operator who offers subscribers the

option of renting a remote control unit -

(i) to notify subscribers that they may purchase a

commercially available remote control device from any source

that sells such devices rather than renting it from the cable

operator; and

(ii) to specify the types of remote control units that are

compatible with the converter box supplied by the cable

operator; and

(F) to prohibit a cable operator from taking any action that

prevents or in any way disables the converter box supplied by

the cable operator from operating compatibly with commercially

available remote control units.

(d) Review of regulations

The Commission shall periodically review and, if necessary,

modify the regulations issued pursuant to this section in light of

any actions taken in response to such regulations and to reflect

improvements and changes in cable systems, television receivers,

video cassette recorders, and similar technology.

-SOURCE-

(June 19, 1934, ch. 652, title VI, Sec. 624A, as added Pub. L.

102-385, Sec. 17, Oct. 5, 1992, 106 Stat. 1491; amended Pub. L.

104-104, title III, Sec. 301(f), Feb. 8, 1996, 110 Stat. 116.)

-MISC1-

AMENDMENTS

1996 - Subsec. (a)(4). Pub. L. 104-104, Sec. 301(f)(1), added

par. (4).

Subsec. (c)(1)(A) to (C). Pub. L. 104-104, Sec. 301(f)(2), added

subpar. (A) and redesignated former subpars. (A) and (B) as (B) and

(C), respectively.

Subsec. (c)(2)(D) to (F). Pub. L. 104-104, Sec. 301(f)(3), added

subpar. (D) and redesignated former subpars. (D) and (E) as (E) and

(F), respectively.

EFFECTIVE DATE

Section effective 60 days after Oct. 5, 1992, see section 28 of

Pub. L. 102-385, set out as an Effective Date of 1992 Amendment

note under section 325 of this title.

-End-

-CITE-

47 USC Sec. 545 01/06/03

-EXPCITE-

TITLE 47 - TELEGRAPHS, TELEPHONES, AND RADIOTELEGRAPHS

CHAPTER 5 - WIRE OR RADIO COMMUNICATION

SUBCHAPTER V09A - CABLE COMMUNICATIONS

Part III - Franchising and Regulation

-HEAD-

Sec. 545. Modification of franchise obligations

-STATUTE-

(a) Grounds for modification by franchising authority; public

proceeding; time of decision

(1) During the period a franchise is in effect, the cable

operator may obtain from the franchising authority modifications of

the requirements in such franchise -

(A) in the case of any such requirement for facilities or

equipment, including public, educational, or governmental access

facilities or equipment, if the cable operator demonstrates that

(i) it is commercially impracticable for the operator to comply

with such requirement, and (ii) the proposal by the cable

operator for modification of such requirement is appropriate

because of commercial impracticability; or

(B) in the case of any such requirement for services, if the

cable operator demonstrates that the mix, quality, and level of

services required by the franchise at the time it was granted

will be maintained after such modification.

(2) Any final decision by a franchising authority under this

subsection shall be made in a public proceeding. Such decision

shall be made within 120 days after receipt of such request by the

franchising authority, unless such 120 day period is extended by

mutual agreement of the cable operator and the franchising

authority.

(b) Judicial proceedings; grounds for modification by court

(1) Any cable operator whose request for modification under

subsection (a) of this section has been denied by a final decision

of a franchising authority may obtain modification of such

franchise requirements pursuant to the provisions of section 555 of

this title.

(2) In the case of any proposed modification of a requirement for

facilities or equipment, the court shall grant such modification

only if the cable operator demonstrates to the court that -

(A) it is commercially impracticable for the operator to comply

with such requirement; and

(B) the terms of the modification requested are appropriate

because of commercial impracticability.

(3) In the case of any proposed modification of a requirement for

services, the court shall grant such modification only if the cable

operator demonstrates to the court that the mix, quality, and level

of services required by the franchise at the time it was granted

will be maintained after such modification.

(c) Rearrangement, replacement, or removal of service

Notwithstanding subsections (a) and (b) of this section, a cable

operator may, upon 30 days' advance notice to the franchising

authority, rearrange, replace, or remove a particular cable service

required by the franchise if -

(1) such service is no longer available to the operator; or

(2) such service is available to the operator only upon the

payment of a royalty required under section 801(b)(2) of title

17, which the cable operator can document -

(A) is substantially in excess of the amount of such payment

required on the date of the operator's offer to provide such

service, and

(B) has not been specifically compensated for through a rate

increase or other adjustment.

(d) Rearrangement of particular services from one service tier to

another or other offering of service

Notwithstanding subsections (a) and (b) of this section, a cable

operator may take such actions to rearrange a particular service

from one service tier to another, or otherwise offer the service,

if the rates for all of the service tiers involved in such actions

are not subject to regulation under section 543 of this title.

(e) Requirements for services relating to public, educational, or

governmental access

A cable operator may not obtain modification under this section

of any requirement for services relating to public, educational, or

governmental access.

(f) "Commercially impracticable" defined

For purposes of this section, the term "commercially

impracticable" means, with respect to any requirement applicable to

a cable operator, that it is commercially impracticable for the

operator to comply with such requirement as a result of a change in

conditions which is beyond the control of the operator and the

nonoccurrence of which was a basic assumption on which the

requirement was based.

-SOURCE-

(June 19, 1934, ch. 652, title VI, Sec. 625, as added Pub. L.

98-549, Sec. 2, Oct. 30, 1984, 98 Stat. 2790.)

-MISC1-

EFFECTIVE DATE

Section effective 60 days after Oct. 30, 1984, except where

otherwise expressly provided, see section 9(a) of Pub. L. 98-549,

set out as a note under section 521 of this title.

-SECREF-

SECTION REFERRED TO IN OTHER SECTIONS

This section is referred to in sections 544, 555 of this title.

-End-

-CITE-

47 USC Sec. 546 01/06/03

-EXPCITE-

TITLE 47 - TELEGRAPHS, TELEPHONES, AND RADIOTELEGRAPHS

CHAPTER 5 - WIRE OR RADIO COMMUNICATION

SUBCHAPTER V09A - CABLE COMMUNICATIONS

Part III - Franchising and Regulation

-HEAD-

Sec. 546. Renewal

-STATUTE-

(a) Commencement of proceedings; public notice and participation

(1) A franchising authority may, on its own initiative during the

6-month period which begins with the 36th month before the

franchise expiration, commence a proceeding which affords the

public in the franchise area appropriate notice and participation

for the purpose of (A) identifying the future cable-related

community needs and interests, and (B) reviewing the performance of

the cable operator under the franchise during the then current

franchise term. If the cable operator submits, during such 6-month

period, a written renewal notice requesting the commencement of

such a proceeding, the franchising authority shall commence such a

proceeding not later than 6 months after the date such notice is

submitted.

(2) The cable operator may not invoke the renewal procedures set

forth in subsections (b) through (g) of this section unless -

(A) such a proceeding is requested by the cable operator by

timely submission of such notice; or

(B) such a proceeding is commenced by the franchising authority

on its own initiative.

(b) Submission of renewal proposals; contents; time

(1) Upon completion of a proceeding under subsection (a) of this

section, a cable operator seeking renewal of a franchise may, on

its own initiative or at the request of a franchising authority,

submit a proposal for renewal.

(2) Subject to section 544 of this title, any such proposal shall

contain such material as the franchising authority may require,

including proposals for an upgrade of the cable system.

(3) The franchising authority may establish a date by which such

proposal shall be submitted.

(c) Notice of proposal; renewal; preliminary assessment of

nonrenewal; administrative review; issues; notice and opportunity

for hearing; transcript; written decision

(1) Upon submittal by a cable operator of a proposal to the

franchising authority for the renewal of a franchise pursuant to

subsection (b) of this section, the franchising authority shall

provide prompt public notice of such proposal and, during the

4-month period which begins on the date of the submission of the

cable operator's proposal pursuant to subsection (b) of this

section, renew the franchise or, issue a preliminary assessment

that the franchise should not be renewed and, at the request of the

operator or on its own initiative, commence an administrative

proceeding, after providing prompt public notice of such

proceeding, in accordance with paragraph (2) to consider whether -

(A) the cable operator has substantially complied with the

material terms of the existing franchise and with applicable law;

(B) the quality of the operator's service, including signal

quality, response to consumer complaints, and billing practices,

but without regard to the mix or quality of cable services or

other services provided over the system, has been reasonable in

light of community needs;

(C) the operator has the financial, legal, and technical

ability to provide the services, facilities, and equipment as set

forth in the operator's proposal; and

(D) the operator's proposal is reasonable to meet the future

cable-related community needs and interests, taking into account

the cost of meeting such needs and interests.

(2) In any proceeding under paragraph (1), the cable operator

shall be afforded adequate notice and the cable operator and the

franchise authority, or its designee, shall be afforded fair

opportunity for full participation, including the right to

introduce evidence (including evidence related to issues raised in

the proceeding under subsection (a) of this section), to require

the production of evidence, and to question witnesses. A transcript

shall be made of any such proceeding.

(3) At the completion of a proceeding under this subsection, the

franchising authority shall issue a written decision granting or

denying the proposal for renewal based upon the record of such

proceeding, and transmit a copy of such decision to the cable

operator. Such decision shall state the reasons therefor.

(d) Basis for denial

Any denial of a proposal for renewal that has been submitted in

compliance with subsection (b) of this section shall be based on

one or more adverse findings made with respect to the factors

described in subparagraphs (A) through (D) of subsection (c)(1) of

this section, pursuant to the record of the proceeding under

subsection (c) of this section. A franchising authority may not

base a denial of renewal on a failure to substantially comply with

the material terms of the franchise under subsection (c)(1)(A) of

this section or on events considered under subsection (c)(1)(B) of

this section in any case in which a violation of the franchise or

the events considered under subsection (c)(1)(B) of this section

occur after the effective date of this subchapter unless the

franchising authority has provided the operator with notice and the

opportunity to cure, or in any case in which it is documented that

the franchising authority has waived its right to object, or the

cable operator gives written notice of a failure or inability to

cure and the franchising authority fails to object within a

reasonable time after receipt of such notice.

(e) Judicial review; grounds for relief

(1) Any cable operator whose proposal for renewal has been denied

by a final decision of a franchising authority made pursuant to

this section, or has been adversely affected by a failure of the

franchising authority to act in accordance with the procedural

requirements of this section, may appeal such final decision or

failure pursuant to the provisions of section 555 of this title.

(2) The court shall grant appropriate relief if the court finds

that -

(A) any action of the franchising authority, other than

harmless error, is not in compliance with the procedural

requirements of this section; or

(B) in the event of a final decision of the franchising

authority denying the renewal proposal, the operator has

demonstrated that the adverse finding of the franchising

authority with respect to each of the factors described in

subparagraphs (A) through (D) of subsection (c)(1) of this

section on which the denial is based is not supported by a

preponderance of the evidence, based on the record of the

proceeding conducted under subsection (c) of this section.

(f) Finality of administrative decision

Any decision of a franchising authority on a proposal for renewal

shall not be considered final unless all administrative review by

the State has occurred or the opportunity therefor has lapsed.

(g) "Franchise expiration" defined

For purposes of this section, the term "franchise expiration"

means the date of the expiration of the term of the franchise, as

provided under the franchise, as it was in effect on October 30,

1984.

(h) Alternative renewal procedures

Notwithstanding the provisions of subsections (a) through (g) of

this section, a cable operator may submit a proposal for the

renewal of a franchise pursuant to this subsection at any time, and

a franchising authority may, after affording the public adequate

notice and opportunity for comment, grant or deny such proposal at

any time (including after proceedings pursuant to this section have

commenced). The provisions of subsections (a) through (g) of this

section shall not apply to a decision to grant or deny a proposal

under this subsection. The denial of a renewal pursuant to this

subsection shall not affect action on a renewal proposal that is

submitted in accordance with subsections (a) through (g) of this

section.

(i) Effect of renewal procedures upon action to revoke franchise

for cause

Notwithstanding the provisions of subsections (a) through (h) of

this section, any lawful action to revoke a cable operator's

franchise for cause shall not be negated by the subsequent

initiation of renewal proceedings by the cable operator under this

section.

-SOURCE-

(June 19, 1934, ch. 652, title VI, Sec. 626, as added Pub. L.

98-549, Sec. 2, Oct. 30, 1984, 98 Stat. 2791; amended Pub. L.

102-385, Sec. 18, Oct. 5, 1992, 106 Stat. 1493.)

-REFTEXT-

REFERENCES IN TEXT

For "the effective date of this subchapter", referred to in

subsec. (d), as 60 days after Oct. 30, 1984, except where otherwise

expressly provided, see section 9(a) of Pub. L. 98-549, set out as

an Effective Date note under section 521 of this title.

-MISC1-

AMENDMENTS

1992 - Subsec. (a). Pub. L. 102-385, Sec. 18(a), amended subsec.

(a) generally. Prior to amendment, subsec. (a) read as follows:

"During the 6-month period which begins with the 36th month before

the franchise expiration, the franchising authority may on its own

initiative, and shall at the request of the cable operator,

commence proceedings which afford the public in the franchise area

appropriate notice and participation for the purpose of -

"(1) identifying the future cable-related community needs and

interests; and

"(2) reviewing the performance of the cable operator under the

franchise during the then current franchise term."

Subsec. (c)(1). Pub. L. 102-385, Sec. 18(b), inserted "pursuant

to subsection (b) of this section" after "renewal of a franchise"

and substituted "date of the submission of the cable operator's

proposal pursuant to subsection (b) of this section" for

"completion of any proceedings under subsection (a) of this

section".

Subsec. (c)(1)(B). Pub. L. 102-385, Sec. 18(c), substituted "mix

or quality" for "mix, quality, or level".

Subsec. (d). Pub. L. 102-385, Sec. 18(d), inserted "that has been

submitted in compliance with subsection (b) of this section" after

"Any denial of a proposal for renewal" and substituted "or the

cable operator gives written notice of a failure or inability to

cure and the franchising authority fails to object within a

reasonable time after receipt of such notice" for "or has

effectively acquiesced".

Subsec. (e)(2)(A). Pub. L. 102-385, Sec. 18(e), inserted ", other

than harmless error," after "franchising authority".

Subsec. (i). Pub. L. 102-385, Sec. 18(f), added subsec. (i).

EFFECTIVE DATE OF 1992 AMENDMENT

Amendment by Pub. L. 102-385 effective 60 days after Oct. 5,

1992, see section 28 of Pub. L. 102-385, set out as a note under

section 325 of this title.

EFFECTIVE DATE

Section effective 60 days after Oct. 30, 1984, except where

otherwise expressly provided, see section 9(a) of Pub. L. 98-549,

set out as a note under section 521 of this title.

-SECREF-

SECTION REFERRED TO IN OTHER SECTIONS

This section is referred to in sections 522, 531, 532, 544, 555

of this title.

-End-

-CITE-

47 USC Sec. 547 01/06/03

-EXPCITE-

TITLE 47 - TELEGRAPHS, TELEPHONES, AND RADIOTELEGRAPHS

CHAPTER 5 - WIRE OR RADIO COMMUNICATION

SUBCHAPTER V09A - CABLE COMMUNICATIONS

Part III - Franchising and Regulation

-HEAD-

Sec. 547. Conditions of sale

-STATUTE-

(a) If a renewal of a franchise held by a cable operator is

denied and the franchising authority acquires ownership of the

cable system or effects a transfer of ownership of the system to

another person, any such acquisition or transfer shall be -

(1) at fair market value, determined on the basis of the cable

system valued as a going concern but with no value allocated to

the franchise itself, or

(2) in the case of any franchise existing on the effective date

of this subchapter, at a price determined in accordance with the

franchise if such franchise contains provisions applicable to

such an acquisition or transfer.

(b) If a franchise held by a cable operator is revoked for cause

and the franchising authority acquires ownership of the cable

system or effects a transfer of ownership of the system to another

person, any such acquisition or transfer shall be -

(1) at an equitable price, or

(2) in the case of any franchise existing on the effective date

of this subchapter, at a price determined in accordance with the

franchise if such franchise contains provisions applicable to

such an acquisition or transfer.

-SOURCE-

(June 19, 1934, ch. 652, title VI, Sec. 627, as added Pub. L.

98-549, Sec. 2, Oct. 30, 1984, 98 Stat. 2793.)

-REFTEXT-

REFERENCES IN TEXT

For "the effective date of this subchapter", referred to in

subsecs. (a)(2) and (b)(2), as 60 days after Oct. 30, 1984, except

where otherwise expressly provided, see section 9(a) of Pub. L.

98-549, set out as an Effective Date note under section 521 of this

title.

-MISC1-

EFFECTIVE DATE

Section effective 60 days after Oct. 30, 1984, except where

otherwise expressly provided, see section 9(a) of Pub. L. 98-549,

set out as a note under section 521 of this title.

-End-

-CITE-

47 USC Sec. 548 01/06/03

-EXPCITE-

TITLE 47 - TELEGRAPHS, TELEPHONES, AND RADIOTELEGRAPHS

CHAPTER 5 - WIRE OR RADIO COMMUNICATION

SUBCHAPTER V09A - CABLE COMMUNICATIONS

Part III - Franchising and Regulation

-HEAD-

Sec. 548. Development of competition and diversity in video

programming distribution

-STATUTE-

(a) Purpose

The purpose of this section is to promote the public interest,

convenience, and necessity by increasing competition and diversity

in the multichannel video programming market, to increase the

availability of satellite cable programming and satellite broadcast

programming to persons in rural and other areas not currently able

to receive such programming, and to spur the development of

communications technologies.

(b) Prohibition

It shall be unlawful for a cable operator, a satellite cable

programming vendor in which a cable operator has an attributable

interest, or a satellite broadcast programming vendor to engage in

unfair methods of competition or unfair or deceptive acts or

practices, the purpose or effect of which is to hinder

significantly or to prevent any multichannel video programming

distributor from providing satellite cable programming or satellite

broadcast programming to subscribers or consumers.

(c) Regulations required

(1) Proceeding required

Within 180 days after October 5, 1992, the Commission shall, in

order to promote the public interest, convenience, and necessity

by increasing competition and diversity in the multichannel video

programming market and the continuing development of

communications technologies, prescribe regulations to specify

particular conduct that is prohibited by subsection (b) of this

section.

(2) Minimum contents of regulations

The regulations to be promulgated under this section shall -

(A) establish effective safeguards to prevent a cable

operator which has an attributable interest in a satellite

cable programming vendor or a satellite broadcast programming

vendor from unduly or improperly influencing the decision of

such vendor to sell, or the prices, terms, and conditions of

sale of, satellite cable programming or satellite broadcast

programming to any unaffiliated multichannel video programming

distributor;

(B) prohibit discrimination by a satellite cable programming

vendor in which a cable operator has an attributable interest

or by a satellite broadcast programming vendor in the prices,

terms, and conditions of sale or delivery of satellite cable

programming or satellite broadcast programming among or between

cable systems, cable operators, or other multichannel video

programming distributors, or their agents or buying groups;

except that such a satellite cable programming vendor in which

a cable operator has an attributable interest or such a

satellite broadcast programming vendor shall not be prohibited

from -

(i) imposing reasonable requirements for creditworthiness,

offering of service, and financial stability and standards

regarding character and technical quality;

(ii) establishing different prices, terms, and conditions

to take into account actual and reasonable differences in the

cost of creation, sale, delivery, or transmission of

satellite cable programming or satellite broadcast

programming;

(iii) establishing different prices, terms, and conditions

which take into account economies of scale, cost savings, or

other direct and legitimate economic benefits reasonably

attributable to the number of subscribers served by the

distributor; or

(iv) entering into an exclusive contract that is permitted

under subparagraph (D);

(C) prohibit practices, understandings, arrangements, and

activities, including exclusive contracts for satellite cable

programming or satellite broadcast programming between a cable

operator and a satellite cable programming vendor or satellite

broadcast programming vendor, that prevent a multichannel video

programming distributor from obtaining such programming from

any satellite cable programming vendor in which a cable

operator has an attributable interest or any satellite

broadcast programming vendor in which a cable operator has an

attributable interest for distribution to persons in areas not

served by a cable operator as of October 5, 1992; and

(D) with respect to distribution to persons in areas served

by a cable operator, prohibit exclusive contracts for satellite

cable programming or satellite broadcast programming between a

cable operator and a satellite cable programming vendor in

which a cable operator has an attributable interest or a

satellite broadcast programming vendor in which a cable

operator has an attributable interest, unless the Commission

determines (in accordance with paragraph (4)) that such

contract is in the public interest.

(3) Limitations

(A) Geographic limitations

Nothing in this section shall require any person who is

engaged in the national or regional distribution of video

programming to make such programming available in any

geographic area beyond which such programming has been

authorized or licensed for distribution.

(B) Applicability to satellite retransmissions

Nothing in this section shall apply (i) to the signal of any

broadcast affiliate of a national television network or other

television signal that is retransmitted by satellite but that

is not satellite broadcast programming, or (ii) to any internal

satellite communication of any broadcast network or cable

network that is not satellite broadcast programming.

(4) Public interest determinations on exclusive contracts

In determining whether an exclusive contract is in the public

interest for purposes of paragraph (2)(D), the Commission shall

consider each of the following factors with respect to the effect

of such contract on the distribution of video programming in

areas that are served by a cable operator:

(A) the effect of such exclusive contract on the development

of competition in local and national multichannel video

programming distribution markets;

(B) the effect of such exclusive contract on competition from

multichannel video programming distribution technologies other

than cable;

(C) the effect of such exclusive contract on the attraction

of capital investment in the production and distribution of new

satellite cable programming;

(D) the effect of such exclusive contract on diversity of

programming in the multichannel video programming distribution

market; and

(E) the duration of the exclusive contract.

(5) Sunset provision

The prohibition required by paragraph (2)(D) shall cease to be

effective 10 years after October 5, 1992, unless the Commission

finds, in a proceeding conducted during the last year of such

10-year period, that such prohibition continues to be necessary

to preserve and protect competition and diversity in the

distribution of video programming.

(d) Adjudicatory proceeding

Any multichannel video programming distributor aggrieved by

conduct that it alleges constitutes a violation of subsection (b)

of this section, or the regulations of the Commission under

subsection (c) of this section, may commence an adjudicatory

proceeding at the Commission.

(e) Remedies for violations

(1) Remedies authorized

Upon completion of such adjudicatory proceeding, the Commission

shall have the power to order appropriate remedies, including, if

necessary, the power to establish prices, terms, and conditions

of sale of programming to the aggrieved multichannel video

programming distributor.

(2) Additional remedies

The remedies provided in paragraph (1) are in addition to and

not in lieu of the remedies available under subchapter V of this

chapter or any other provision of this chapter.

(f) Procedures

The Commission shall prescribe regulations to implement this

section. The Commission's regulations shall -

(1) provide for an expedited review of any complaints made

pursuant to this section;

(2) establish procedures for the Commission to collect such

data, including the right to obtain copies of all contracts and

documents reflecting arrangements and understandings alleged to

violate this section, as the Commission requires to carry out

this section; and

(3) provide for penalties to be assessed against any person

filing a frivolous complaint pursuant to this section.

(g) Reports

The Commission shall, beginning not later than 18 months after

promulgation of the regulations required by subsection (c) of this

section, annually report to Congress on the status of competition

in the market for the delivery of video programming.

(h) Exemptions for prior contracts

(1) In general

Nothing in this section shall affect any contract that grants

exclusive distribution rights to any person with respect to

satellite cable programming and that was entered into on or

before June 1, 1990, except that the provisions of subsection

(c)(2)(C) of this section shall apply for distribution to persons

in areas not served by a cable operator.

(2) Limitation on renewals

A contract that was entered into on or before June 1, 1990, but

that is renewed or extended after October 5, 1992, shall not be

exempt under paragraph (1).

(i) Definitions

As used in this section:

(1) The term "satellite cable programming" has the meaning

provided under section 605 of this title, except that such term

does not include satellite broadcast programming.

(2) The term "satellite cable programming vendor" means a

person engaged in the production, creation, or wholesale

distribution for sale of satellite cable programming, but does

not include a satellite broadcast programming vendor.

(3) The term "satellite broadcast programming" means broadcast

video programming when such programming is retransmitted by

satellite and the entity retransmitting such programming is not

the broadcaster or an entity performing such retransmission on

behalf of and with the specific consent of the broadcaster.

(4) The term "satellite broadcast programming vendor" means a

fixed service satellite carrier that provides service pursuant to

section 119 of title 17 with respect to satellite broadcast

programming.

(j) Common carriers

Any provision that applies to a cable operator under this section

shall apply to a common carrier or its affiliate that provides

video programming by any means directly to subscribers. Any such

provision that applies to a satellite cable programming vendor in

which a cable operator has an attributable interest shall apply to

any satellite cable programming vendor in which such common carrier

has an attributable interest. For the purposes of this subsection,

two or fewer common officers or directors shall not by itself

establish an attributable interest by a common carrier in a

satellite cable programming vendor (or its parent company).

-SOURCE-

(June 19, 1934, ch. 652, title VI, Sec. 628, as added Pub. L.

102-385, Sec. 19, Oct. 5, 1992, 106 Stat. 1494; amended Pub. L.

104-104, title III, Sec. 301(h), Feb. 8, 1996, 110 Stat. 117.)

-MISC1-

AMENDMENTS

1996 - Subsec. (j). Pub. L. 104-104 added subsec. (j).

EFFECTIVE DATE

Section effective 60 days after Oct. 5, 1992, see section 28 of

Pub. L. 102-385, set out as an Effective Date of 1992 Amendment

note under section 325 of this title.

-SECREF-

SECTION REFERRED TO IN OTHER SECTIONS

This section is referred to in sections 336, 573 of this title.

-End-

-CITE-

47 USC Sec. 549 01/06/03

-EXPCITE-

TITLE 47 - TELEGRAPHS, TELEPHONES, AND RADIOTELEGRAPHS

CHAPTER 5 - WIRE OR RADIO COMMUNICATION

SUBCHAPTER V09A - CABLE COMMUNICATIONS

Part III - Franchising and Regulation

-HEAD-

Sec. 549. Competitive availability of navigation devices

-STATUTE-

(a) Commercial consumer availability of equipment used to access

services provided by multichannel video programming distributors

The Commission shall, in consultation with appropriate industry

standard-setting organizations, adopt regulations to assure the

commercial availability, to consumers of multichannel video

programming and other services offered over multichannel video

programming systems, of converter boxes, interactive communications

equipment, and other equipment used by consumers to access

multichannel video programming and other services offered over

multichannel video programming systems, from manufacturers,

retailers, and other vendors not affiliated with any multichannel

video programming distributor. Such regulations shall not prohibit

any multichannel video programming distributor from also offering

converter boxes, interactive communications equipment, and other

equipment used by consumers to access multichannel video

programming and other services offered over multichannel video

programming systems, to consumers, if the system operator's charges

to consumers for such devices and equipment are separately stated

and not subsidized by charges for any such service.

(b) Protection of system security

The Commission shall not prescribe regulations under subsection

(a) of this section which would jeopardize security of multichannel

video programming and other services offered over multichannel

video programming systems, or impede the legal rights of a provider

of such services to prevent theft of service.

(c) Waiver

The Commission shall waive a regulation adopted under subsection

(a) of this section for a limited time upon an appropriate showing

by a provider of multichannel video programming and other services

offered over multichannel video programming systems, or an

equipment provider, that such waiver is necessary to assist the

development or introduction of a new or improved multichannel video

programming or other service offered over multichannel video

programming systems, technology, or products. Upon an appropriate

showing, the Commission shall grant any such waiver request within

90 days of any application filed under this subsection, and such

waiver shall be effective for all service providers and products in

that category and for all providers of services and products.

(d) Avoidance of redundant regulations

(1) Commercial availability determinations

Determinations made or regulations prescribed by the Commission

with respect to commercial availability to consumers of converter

boxes, interactive communications equipment, and other equipment

used by consumers to access multichannel video programming and

other services offered over multichannel video programming

systems, before February 8, 1996, shall fulfill the requirements

of this section.

(2) Regulations

Nothing in this section affects section 64.702(e) of the

Commission's regulations (47 C.F.R. 64.702(e)) or other

Commission regulations governing interconnection and competitive

provision of customer premises equipment used in connection with

basic common carrier communications services.

(e) Sunset

The regulations adopted under this section shall cease to apply

when the Commission determines that -

(1) the market for the multichannel video programming

distributors is fully competitive;

(2) the market for converter boxes, and interactive

communications equipment, used in conjunction with that service

is fully competitive; and

(3) elimination of the regulations would promote competition

and the public interest.

(f) Commission's authority

Nothing in this section shall be construed as expanding or

limiting any authority that the Commission may have under law in

effect before February 8, 1996.

-SOURCE-

(June 19, 1934, ch. 652, title VI, Sec. 629, as added Pub. L.

104-104, title III, Sec. 304, Feb. 8, 1996, 110 Stat. 125.)

-End-

-CITE-

47 USC Part IV - Miscellaneous Provisions 01/06/03

-EXPCITE-

TITLE 47 - TELEGRAPHS, TELEPHONES, AND RADIOTELEGRAPHS

CHAPTER 5 - WIRE OR RADIO COMMUNICATION

SUBCHAPTER V09A - CABLE COMMUNICATIONS

Part IV - Miscellaneous Provisions

-HEAD-

PART IV - MISCELLANEOUS PROVISIONS

-SECREF-

PART REFERRED TO IN OTHER SECTIONS

This part is referred to in sections 571, 573 of this title.

-End-

-CITE-

47 USC Sec. 551 01/06/03

-EXPCITE-

TITLE 47 - TELEGRAPHS, TELEPHONES, AND RADIOTELEGRAPHS

CHAPTER 5 - WIRE OR RADIO COMMUNICATION

SUBCHAPTER V09A - CABLE COMMUNICATIONS

Part IV - Miscellaneous Provisions

-HEAD-

Sec. 551. Protection of subscriber privacy

-STATUTE-

(a) Notice to subscriber regarding personally identifiable

information; definitions

(1) At the time of entering into an agreement to provide any

cable service or other service to a subscriber and at least once a

year thereafter, a cable operator shall provide notice in the form

of a separate, written statement to such subscriber which clearly

and conspicuously informs the subscriber of -

(A) the nature of personally identifiable information collected

or to be collected with respect to the subscriber and the nature

of the use of such information;

(B) the nature, frequency, and purpose of any disclosure which

may be made of such information, including an identification of

the types of persons to whom the disclosure may be made;

(C) the period during which such information will be maintained

by the cable operator;

(D) the times and place at which the subscriber may have access

to such information in accordance with subsection (d) of this

section; and

(E) the limitations provided by this section with respect to

the collection and disclosure of information by a cable operator

and the right of the subscriber under subsections (f) and (h) of

this section to enforce such limitations.

In the case of subscribers who have entered into such an agreement

before the effective date of this section, such notice shall be

provided within 180 days of such date and at least once a year

thereafter.

(2) For purposes of this section, other than subsection (h) of

this section -

(A) the term "personally identifiable information" does not

include any record of aggregate data which does not identify

particular persons;

(B) the term "other service" includes any wire or radio

communications service provided using any of the facilities of a

cable operator that are used in the provision of cable service;

and

(C) the term "cable operator" includes, in addition to persons

within the definition of cable operator in section 522 of this

title, any person who (i) is owned or controlled by, or under

common ownership or control with, a cable operator, and (ii)

provides any wire or radio communications service.

(b) Collection of personally identifiable information using cable

system

(1) Except as provided in paragraph (2), a cable operator shall

not use the cable system to collect personally identifiable

information concerning any subscriber without the prior written or

electronic consent of the subscriber concerned.

(2) A cable operator may use the cable system to collect such

information in order to -

(A) obtain information necessary to render a cable service or

other service provided by the cable operator to the subscriber;

or

(B) detect unauthorized reception of cable communications.

(c) Disclosure of personally identifiable information

(1) Except as provided in paragraph (2), a cable operator shall

not disclose personally identifiable information concerning any

subscriber without the prior written or electronic consent of the

subscriber concerned and shall take such actions as are necessary

to prevent unauthorized access to such information by a person

other than the subscriber or cable operator.

(2) A cable operator may disclose such information if the

disclosure is -

(A) necessary to render, or conduct a legitimate business

activity related to, a cable service or other service provided by

the cable operator to the subscriber;

(B) subject to subsection (h) of this section, made pursuant to

a court order authorizing such disclosure, if the subscriber is

notified of such order by the person to whom the order is

directed;

(C) a disclosure of the names and addresses of subscribers to

any cable service or other service, if -

(i) the cable operator has provided the subscriber the

opportunity to prohibit or limit such disclosure, and

(ii) the disclosure does not reveal, directly or indirectly,

the -

(I) extent of any viewing or other use by the subscriber of

a cable service or other service provided by the cable

operator, or

(II) the nature of any transaction made by the subscriber

over the cable system of the cable operator; or

(D) to a government entity as authorized under chapters 119,

121, or 206 of title 18, except that such disclosure shall not

include records revealing cable subscriber selection of video

programming from a cable operator.

(d) Subscriber access to information

A cable subscriber shall be provided access to all personally

identifiable information regarding that subscriber which is

collected and maintained by a cable operator. Such information

shall be made available to the subscriber at reasonable times and

at a convenient place designated by such cable operator. A cable

subscriber shall be provided reasonable opportunity to correct any

error in such information.

(e) Destruction of information

A cable operator shall destroy personally identifiable

information if the information is no longer necessary for the

purpose for which it was collected and there are no pending

requests or orders for access to such information under subsection

(d) of this section or pursuant to a court order.

(f) Civil action in United States district court; damages;

attorney's fees and costs; nonexclusive nature of remedy

(1) Any person aggrieved by any act of a cable operator in

violation of this section may bring a civil action in a United

States district court.

(2) The court may award -

(A) actual damages but not less than liquidated damages

computed at the rate of $100 a day for each day of violation or

$1,000, whichever is higher;

(B) punitive damages; and

(C) reasonable attorneys' fees and other litigation costs

reasonably incurred.

(3) The remedy provided by this section shall be in addition to

any other lawful remedy available to a cable subscriber.

(g) Regulation by States or franchising authorities

Nothing in this subchapter shall be construed to prohibit any

State or any franchising authority from enacting or enforcing laws

consistent with this section for the protection of subscriber

privacy.

(h) Disclosure of information to governmental entity pursuant to

court order

Except as provided in subsection (c)(2)(D) of this section, a

governmental entity may obtain personally identifiable information

concerning a cable subscriber pursuant to a court order only if, in

the court proceeding relevant to such court order -

(1) such entity offers clear and convincing evidence that the

subject of the information is reasonably suspected of engaging in

criminal activity and that the information sought would be

material evidence in the case; and

(2) the subject of the information is afforded the opportunity

to appear and contest such entity's claim.

-SOURCE-

(June 19, 1934, ch. 652, title VI, Sec. 631, as added Pub. L.

98-549, Sec. 2, Oct. 30, 1984, 98 Stat. 2794; amended Pub. L.

102-385, Sec. 20, Oct. 5, 1992, 106 Stat. 1497; Pub. L. 107-56,

title II, Sec. 211, Oct. 26, 2001, 115 Stat. 283.)

-REFTEXT-

REFERENCES IN TEXT

For "the effective date of this section", referred to in subsec.

(a)(1), as 60 days after Oct. 30, 1984, except where otherwise

expressly provided, see section 9(a) of Pub. L. 98-549, set out as

an Effective Date note under section 521 of this title.

-MISC1-

AMENDMENTS

2001 - Subsec. (c)(2)(D). Pub. L. 107-56, Sec. 211(1), added

subpar. (D).

Subsec. (h). Pub. L. 107-56, Sec. 211(2), substituted "Except as

provided in subsection (c)(2)(D) of this section, a governmental

entity" for "A governmental entity" in introductory provisions.

1992 - Subsec. (a)(2). Pub. L. 102-385, Sec. 20(a), amended par.

(2) generally. Prior to amendment, par. (2) read as follows: "For

purposes of this section, the term 'personally identifiable

information' does not include any record of aggregate data which

does not identify particular persons."

Subsec. (c)(1). Pub. L. 102-385, Sec. 20(b), inserted before

period at end "and shall take such actions as are necessary to

prevent unauthorized access to such information by a person other

than the subscriber or cable operator".

EFFECTIVE DATE OF 1992 AMENDMENT

Amendment by Pub. L. 102-385 effective 60 days after Oct. 5,

1992, see section 28 of Pub. L. 102-385, set out as a note under

section 325 of this title.

EFFECTIVE DATE

Section effective 60 days after Oct. 30, 1984, except where

otherwise expressly provided, see section 9(a) of Pub. L. 98-549,

set out as a note under section 521 of this title.

-SECREF-

SECTION REFERRED TO IN OTHER SECTIONS

This section is referred to in section 573 of this title.

-End-

-CITE-

47 USC Sec. 552 01/06/03

-EXPCITE-

TITLE 47 - TELEGRAPHS, TELEPHONES, AND RADIOTELEGRAPHS

CHAPTER 5 - WIRE OR RADIO COMMUNICATION

SUBCHAPTER V09A - CABLE COMMUNICATIONS

Part IV - Miscellaneous Provisions

-HEAD-

Sec. 552. Consumer protection and customer service

-STATUTE-

(a) Franchising authority enforcement

A franchising authority may establish and enforce -

(1) customer service requirements of the cable operator; and

(2) construction schedules and other construction-related

requirements, including construction-related performance

requirements, of the cable operator.

(b) Commission standards

The Commission shall, within 180 days of October 5, 1992,

establish standards by which cable operators may fulfill their

customer service requirements. Such standards shall include, at a

minimum, requirements governing -

(1) cable system office hours and telephone availability;

(2) installations, outages, and service calls; and

(3) communications between the cable operator and the

subscriber (including standards governing bills and refunds).

(c) Subscriber notice

A cable operator may provide notice of service and rate changes

to subscribers using any reasonable written means at its sole

discretion. Notwithstanding section 543(b)(6) of this title or any

other provision of this chapter, a cable operator shall not be

required to provide prior notice of any rate change that is the

result of a regulatory fee, franchise fee, or any other fee, tax,

assessment, or charge of any kind imposed by any Federal agency,

State, or franchising authority on the transaction between the

operator and the subscriber.

(d) Consumer protection laws and customer service agreements

(1) Consumer protection laws

Nothing in this subchapter shall be construed to prohibit any

State or any franchising authority from enacting or enforcing any

consumer protection law, to the extent not specifically preempted

by this subchapter.

(2) Customer service requirement agreements

Nothing in this section shall be construed to preclude a

franchising authority and a cable operator from agreeing to

customer service requirements that exceed the standards

established by the Commission under subsection (b) of this

section. Nothing in this subchapter shall be construed to prevent

the establishment or enforcement of any municipal law or

regulation, or any State law, concerning customer service that

imposes customer service requirements that exceed the standards

set by the Commission under this section, or that addresses

matters not addressed by the standards set by the Commission

under this section.

-SOURCE-

(June 19, 1934, ch. 652, title VI, Sec. 632, as added Pub. L.

98-549, Sec. 2, Oct. 30, 1984, 98 Stat. 2796; amended Pub. L.

102-385, Sec. 8, Oct. 5, 1992, 106 Stat. 1484; Pub. L. 104-104,

title III, Sec. 301(g), Feb. 8, 1996, 110 Stat. 117.)

-MISC1-

AMENDMENTS

1996 - Subsecs. (c), (d). Pub. L. 104-104 added subsec. (c) and

redesignated former subsec. (c) as (d).

1992 - Pub. L. 102-385 amended section generally. Prior to

amendment, section read as follows:

"(a) A franchising authority may require, as part of a franchise

(including a franchise renewal, subject to section 546 of this

title), provisions for enforcement of -

"(1) customer service requirements of the cable operator; and

"(2) construction schedules and other construction-related

requirements of the cable operator.

"(b) A franchising authority may enforce any provision, contained

in any franchise, relating to requirements described in paragraph

(1) or (2) of subsection (a) of this section, to the extent not

inconsistent with this subchapter.

"(c) Nothing in this subchapter shall be construed to prohibit

any State or any franchising authority from enacting or enforcing

any consumer protection law, to the extent not inconsistent with

this subchapter."

EFFECTIVE DATE OF 1992 AMENDMENT

Amendment by Pub. L. 102-385 effective 60 days after Oct. 5,

1992, see section 28 of Pub. L. 102-385, set out as a note under

section 325 of this title.

EFFECTIVE DATE

Section effective 60 days after Oct. 30, 1984, except where

otherwise expressly provided, see section 9(a) of Pub. L. 98-549,

set out as a note under section 521 of this title.

-End-

-CITE-

47 USC Sec. 553 01/06/03

-EXPCITE-

TITLE 47 - TELEGRAPHS, TELEPHONES, AND RADIOTELEGRAPHS

CHAPTER 5 - WIRE OR RADIO COMMUNICATION

SUBCHAPTER V09A - CABLE COMMUNICATIONS

Part IV - Miscellaneous Provisions

-HEAD-

Sec. 553. Unauthorized reception of cable service

-STATUTE-

(a) Unauthorized interception or receipt or assistance in

intercepting or receiving service; "assist in intercepting or

receiving" defined

(1) No person shall intercept or receive or assist in

intercepting or receiving any communications service offered over a

cable system, unless specifically authorized to do so by a cable

operator or as may otherwise be specifically authorized by law.

(2) For the purpose of this section, the term "assist in

intercepting or receiving" shall include the manufacture or

distribution of equipment intended by the manufacturer or

distributor (as the case may be) for unauthorized reception of any

communications service offered over a cable system in violation of

subparagraph (1).

(b) Penalties for willful violation

(1) Any person who willfully violates subsection (a)(1) of this

section shall be fined not more than $1,000 or imprisoned for not

more than 6 months, or both.

(2) Any person who violates subsection (a)(1) of this section

willfully and for purposes of commercial advantage or private

financial gain shall be fined not more than $50,000 or imprisoned

for not more than 2 years, or both, for the first such offense and

shall be fined not more than $100,000 or imprisoned for not more

than 5 years, or both, for any subsequent offense.

(3) For purposes of all penalties and remedies established for

violations of subsection (a)(1) of this section, the prohibited

activity established herein as it applies to each such device shall

be deemed a separate violation.

(c) Civil action in district court; injunctions; damages;

attorney's fees and costs; regulation by States or franchising

authorities

(1) Any person aggrieved by any violation of subsection (a)(1) of

this section may bring a civil action in a United States district

court or in any other court of competent jurisdiction.

(2) The court may -

(A) grant temporary and final injunctions on such terms as it

may deem reasonable to prevent or restrain violations of

subsection (a)(1) of this section;

(B) award damages as described in paragraph (3); and

(C) direct the recovery of full costs, including awarding

reasonable attorneys' fees to an aggrieved party who prevails.

(3)(A) Damages awarded by any court under this section shall be

computed in accordance with either of the following clauses:

(i) the party aggrieved may recover the actual damages suffered

by him as a result of the violation and any profits of the

violator that are attributable to the violation which are not

taken into account in computing the actual damages; in

determining the violator's profits, the party aggrieved shall be

required to prove only the violator's gross revenue, and the

violator shall be required to prove his deductible expenses and

the elements of profit attributable to factors other than the

violation; or

(ii) the party aggrieved may recover an award of statutory

damages for all violations involved in the action, in a sum of

not less than $250 or more than $10,000 as the court considers

just.

(B) In any case in which the court finds that the violation was

committed willfully and for purposes of commercial advantage or

private financial gain, the court in its discretion may increase

the award of damages, whether actual or statutory under

subparagraph (A), by an amount of not more than $50,000.

(C) In any case where the court finds that the violator was not

aware and had no reason to believe that his acts constituted a

violation of this section, the court in its discretion may reduce

the award of damages to a sum of not less than $100.

(D) Nothing in this subchapter shall prevent any State or

franchising authority from enacting or enforcing laws, consistent

with this section, regarding the unauthorized interception or

reception of any cable service or other communications service.

-SOURCE-

(June 19, 1934, ch. 652, title VI, Sec. 633, as added Pub. L.

98-549, Sec. 2, Oct. 30, 1984, 98 Stat. 2796; amended Pub. L.

102-385, Sec. 21, Oct. 5, 1992, 106 Stat. 1498.)

-MISC1-

AMENDMENTS

1992 - Subsec. (b)(2). Pub. L. 102-385, Sec. 21(1), substituted

"$50,000" for "$25,000", "2 years" for "1 year", "$100,000" for

"$50,000", and "5 years" for "2 years".

Subsec. (b)(3). Pub. L. 102-385, Sec. 21(2), added par. (3).

EFFECTIVE DATE OF 1992 AMENDMENT

Amendment by Pub. L. 102-385 effective 60 days after Oct. 5,

1992, see section 28 of Pub. L. 102-385, set out as a note under

section 325 of this title.

EFFECTIVE DATE

Section effective 60 days after Oct. 30, 1984, except where

otherwise expressly provided, see section 9(a) of Pub. L. 98-549,

set out as a note under section 521 of this title.

-SECREF-

SECTION REFERRED TO IN OTHER SECTIONS

This section is referred to in title 18 section 2511.

-End-

-CITE-

47 USC Sec. 554 01/06/03

-EXPCITE-

TITLE 47 - TELEGRAPHS, TELEPHONES, AND RADIOTELEGRAPHS

CHAPTER 5 - WIRE OR RADIO COMMUNICATION

SUBCHAPTER V09A - CABLE COMMUNICATIONS

Part IV - Miscellaneous Provisions

-HEAD-

Sec. 554. Equal employment opportunity

-STATUTE-

(a) Entities within scope of coverage

This section shall apply to any corporation, partnership,

association, joint-stock company, or trust engaged primarily in the

management or operation of any cable system.

(b) Discrimination prohibited

Equal opportunity in employment shall be afforded by each entity

specified in subsection (a) of this section, and no person shall be

discriminated against in employment by such entity because of race,

color, religion, national origin, age, or sex.

(c) Equal opportunity programs; establishment; maintenance;

execution; terms

Any entity specified in subsection (a) of this section shall

establish, maintain, and execute a positive continuing program of

specific practices designed to ensure equal opportunity in every

aspect of its employment policies and practices. Under the terms of

its program, each such entity shall -

(1) define the responsibility of each level of management to

ensure a positive application and vigorous enforcement of its

policy of equal opportunity, and establish a procedure to review

and control managerial and supervisory performance;

(2) inform its employees and recognized employee organizations

of the equal employment opportunity policy and program and enlist

their cooperation;

(3) communicate its equal employment opportunity policy and

program and its employment needs to sources of qualified

applicants without regard to race, color, religion, national

origin, age, or sex, and solicit their recruitment assistance on

a continuing basis;

(4) conduct a continuing program to exclude every form of

prejudice or discrimination based on race, color, religion,

national origin, age, or sex, from its personnel policies and

practices and working conditions; and

(5) conduct a continuing review of job structure and employment

practices and adopt positive recruitment, training, job design,

and other measures needed to ensure genuine equality of

opportunity to participate fully in all its organizational units,

occupations, and levels of responsibility.

(d) Revision of rules; required provisions; annual statistical

report; notice and comment on amendments

(1) Not later than 270 days after the date of enactment of the

Cable Television Consumer Protection and Competition Act of 1992,

and after notice and opportunity for hearing, the Commission shall

prescribe revisions in the rules under this section in order to

implement the amendments made to this section by such Act. Such

revisions shall be designed to promote equality of employment

opportunities for females and minorities in each of the job

categories itemized in paragraph (3).

(2) Such rules shall specify the terms under which an entity

specified in subsection (a) of this section shall, to the extent

possible -

(A) disseminate its equal opportunity program to job

applicants, employees, and those with whom it regularly does

business;

(B) use minority organizations, organizations for women, media,

educational institutions, and other potential sources of minority

and female applicants, to supply referrals whenever jobs are

available in its operation;

(C) evaluate its employment profile and job turnover against

the availability of minorities and women in its franchise area;

(D) undertake to offer promotions of minorities and women to

positions of greater responsibility;

(E) encourage minority and female entrepreneurs to conduct

business with all parts of its operation; and

(F) analyze the results of its efforts to recruit, hire,

promote, and use the services of minorities and women and explain

any difficulties encountered in implementing its equal employment

opportunity program.

(3)(A) Such rules also shall require an entity specified in

subsection (a) of this section with more than 5 full-time employees

to file with the Commission an annual statistical report

identifying by race, sex, and job title the number of employees in

each of the following full-time and part-time job categories:

(i) Corporate officers.

(ii) General Manager.

(iii) Chief Technician.

(iv) Comptroller.

(v) General Sales Manager.

(vi) Production Manager.

(vii) Managers.

(viii) Professionals.

(ix) Technicians.

(x) Sales Personnel.

(xi) Office and Clerical Personnel.

(xii) Skilled Craftspersons.

(xiii) Semiskilled Operatives.

(xiv) Unskilled Laborers.

(xv) Service Workers.

(B) The report required by subparagraph (A) shall be made on

separate forms, provided by the Commission, for full-time and

part-time employees. The Commission's rules shall sufficiently

define the job categories listed in clauses (i) through (vi) of

such subparagraph so as to ensure that only employees who are

principal decisionmakers and who have supervisory authority are

reported for such categories. The Commission shall adopt rules that

define the job categories listed in clauses (vii) through (xv) in a

manner that is consistent with the Commission policies in effect on

June 1, 1990. The Commission shall prescribe the method by which

entities shall be required to compute and report the number of

minorities and women in the job categories listed in clauses (i)

through (x) and the number of minorities and women in the job

categories listed in clauses (i) through (xv) in proportion to the

total number of qualified minorities and women in the relevant

labor market. The report shall include information on hiring,

promotion, and recruitment practices necessary for the Commission

to evaluate the efforts of entities to comply with the provisions

of paragraph (2) of this subsection. The report shall be available

for public inspection at the entity's central location and at every

location where 5 or more full-time employees are regularly assigned

to work. Nothing in this subsection shall be construed as

prohibiting the Commission from collecting or continuing to collect

statistical or other employment information in a manner that it

deems appropriate to carry out this section.

(4) The Commission may amend such rules from time to time to the

extent necessary to carry out the provisions of this section. Any

such amendment shall be made after notice and opportunity for

comment.

(e) Annual certification of compliance; periodic investigation of

employment practices

(1) On an annual basis, the Commission shall certify each entity

described in subsection (a) of this section as in compliance with

this section if, on the basis of information in the possession of

the Commission, including the report filed pursuant to subsection

(d)(3) of this section, such entity was in compliance, during the

annual period involved, with the requirements of subsections (b),

(c), and (d) of this section.

(2) The Commission shall, periodically but not less frequently

than every five years, investigate the employment practices of each

entity described in subsection (a) of this section, in the

aggregate, as well as in individual job categories, and determine

whether such entity is in compliance with the requirements of

subsections (b), (c), and (d) of this section, including whether

such entity's employment practices deny or abridge women and

minorities equal employment opportunities. As part of such

investigation, the Commission shall review whether the entity's

reports filed pursuant to subsection (d)(3) of this section

accurately reflect employee responsibilities in the reported job

classifications.

(f) Substantial failure to comply; penalties; notice to public and

franchising authorities

(1) If the Commission finds after notice and hearing that the

entity involved has willfully or repeatedly without good cause

failed to comply with the requirements of this section, such

failure shall constitute a substantial failure to comply with this

subchapter. The failure to obtain certification under subsection

(e) of this section shall not itself constitute the basis for a

determination of substantial failure to comply with this title. For

purposes of this paragraph, the term "repeatedly", when used with

respect to failures to comply, refers to 3 or more failures during

any 7-year period.

(2) Any person who is determined by the Commission, through an

investigation pursuant to subsection (e) of this section or

otherwise, to have failed to meet or failed to make best efforts to

meet the requirements of this section, or rules under this section,

shall be liable to the United States for a forfeiture penalty of

$500 for each violation. Each day of a continuing violation shall

constitute a separate offense. Any entity defined in subsection (a)

of this section shall not be liable for more than 180 days of

forfeitures which accrued prior to notification by the Commission

of a potential violation. Nothing in this paragraph shall limit the

forfeiture imposed on any person as a result of any violation that

continues subsequent to such notification. In addition, any person

liable for such penalty may also have any license under this

chapter for cable auxiliary relay service suspended until the

Commission determines that the failure involved has been corrected.

Whoever knowingly makes any false statement or submits

documentation which he knows to be false, pursuant to an

application for certification under this section shall be in

violation of this section.

(3) The provisions of paragraphs (3) and (4), and the last 2

sentences of paragraph (2), of section 503(b) of this title shall

apply to forfeitures under this subsection.

(4) The Commission shall provide for notice to the public and

appropriate franchising authorities of any penalty imposed under

this section.

(g) Discrimination complaints; investigation; enforcement

Employees or applicants for employment who believe they have been

discriminated against in violation of the requirements of this

section, or rules under this section, or any other interested

person, may file a complaint with the Commission. A complaint by

any such person shall be in writing, and shall be signed and sworn

to by that person. The regulations under subsection (d)(1) of this

section shall specify a program, under authorities otherwise

available to the Commission, for the investigation of complaints

and violations, and for the enforcement of this section.

(h) "Cable operator" defined; owners of multiple unit dwellings

(1) For purposes of this section, the term "cable operator"

includes any operator of any satellite master antenna television

system, including a system described in section 522(7)(A) of this

title and any multichannel video programming distributor.

(2) Such term does not include any operator of a system which, in

the aggregate, serves fewer than 50 subscribers.

(3) In any case in which a cable operator is the owner of a

multiple unit dwelling, the requirements of this section shall only

apply to such cable operator with respect to its employees who are

primarily engaged in cable telecommunications.

(i) Regulatory powers of States and franchising authorities;

nonexclusive nature of remedies and enforcement provisions;

covered franchises

(1) Nothing in this section shall affect the authority of any

State or any franchising authority -

(A) to establish or enforce any requirement which is consistent

with the requirements of this section, including any requirement

which affords equal employment opportunity protection for

employees;

(B) to establish or enforce any provision requiring or

encouraging any cable operator to conduct business with

enterprises which are owned or controlled by members of minority

groups (as defined in section 309(i)(3)(C)(ii) of this title) or

which have their principal operations located within the

community served by the cable operator; or

(C) to enforce any requirement of a franchise in effect on the

effective date of this subchapter.

(2) The remedies and enforcement provisions of this section are

in addition to, and not in lieu of, those available under this or

any other law.

(3) The provisions of this section shall apply to any cable

operator, whether operating pursuant to a franchise granted before,

on, or after October 30, 1984.

-SOURCE-

(June 19, 1934, ch. 652, title VI, Sec. 634, as added Pub. L.

98-549, Sec. 2, Oct. 30, 1984, 98 Stat. 2797; amended Pub. L.

102-385, Sec. 22(b)-(e), Oct. 5, 1992, 106 Stat. 1498, 1499; Pub.

L. 103-414, title III, Sec. 303(a)(24), Oct. 25, 1994, 108 Stat.

4295.)

-REFTEXT-

REFERENCES IN TEXT

The Cable Television Consumer Protection and Competition Act of

1992, referred to in subsec. (d)(1), is Pub. L. 102-385, Oct. 5,

1992, 106 Stat. 1460. For complete classification of this Act to

the Code, see Short Title of 1992 Amendments note set out under

section 609 of this title and Tables.

For "the effective date of this subchapter", referred to in

subsec. (i)(1)(C), as 60 days after Oct. 30, 1984, except where

otherwise expressly provided, see section 9(a) of Pub. L. 98-549,

set out as an Effective Date note under section 521 of this title.

-MISC1-

AMENDMENTS

1994 - Subsec. (h)(1). Pub. L. 103-414 substituted "section

522(7)(A)" for "section 522(6)(A)".

1992 - Subsec. (d)(1). Pub. L. 102-385, Sec. 22(b), amended par.

(1) generally. Prior to amendment, par. (1) read as follows: "Not

later than 270 days after the effective date of this section, and

after notice and opportunity for hearing, the Commission shall

prescribe rules to carry out this section."

Subsec. (d)(3). Pub. L. 102-385, Sec. 22(c), amended par. (3)

generally. Prior to amendment, par. (3) read as follows: "Such

rules also shall require an entity specified in subsection (a) of

this section with more than 5 full-time employees to file with the

Commission an annual statistical report identifying by race and sex

the number of employees in each of the following full-time and

part-time job categories:

"(A) officials and managers;

"(B) professionals;

"(C) technicians;

"(D) sales persons;

"(E) office and clerical personnel;

"(F) skilled craft persons;

"(G) semiskilled operatives;

"(H) unskilled laborers; and

"(I) service workers.

The report shall include the number of minorities and women in the

relevant labor market for each of the above categories. The

statistical report shall be available to the public at the central

office and at every location where more than 5 full-time employees

are regularly assigned to work."

Subsec. (f)(2). Pub. L. 102-385, Sec. 22(d), substituted "$500"

for "$200".

Subsec. (h)(1). Pub. L. 102-385, Sec. 22(e), inserted before

period at end "and any multichannel video programming distributor".

EFFECTIVE DATE OF 1992 AMENDMENT

Amendment by Pub. L. 102-385 effective 60 days after Oct. 5,

1992, see section 28 of Pub. L. 102-385, set out as a note under

section 325 of this title.

EFFECTIVE DATE

Section effective 60 days after Oct. 30, 1984, except where

otherwise expressly provided, see section 9(a) of Pub. L. 98-549,

set out as a note under section 521 of this title.

CONGRESSIONAL FINDINGS: EMPLOYMENT OF WOMEN AND MINORITIES IN

MANAGEMENT POSITIONS IN TELEVISION INDUSTRY

Section 22(a) of Pub. L. 102-385 provided that: "The Congress

finds and declares that -

"(1) despite the existence of regulations governing equal

employment opportunity, females and minorities are not employed

in significant numbers in positions of management authority in

the cable and broadcast television industries;

"(2) increased numbers of females and minorities in positions

of management authority in the cable and broadcast television

industries advances the Nation's policy favoring diversity in the

expression of views in the electronic media; and

"(3) rigorous enforcement of equal employment opportunity rules

and regulations is required in order to effectively deter racial

and gender discrimination."

STUDY AND REPORT ON EFFECT AND OPERATION OF AMENDMENTS BY SECTION

22 OF PUB. L. 102-385

Section 22(g) of Pub. L. 102-385 provided that: "Not later than 2

years after the date of enactment of this Act [Oct. 5, 1992], the

Commission shall submit to the Congress a report pursuant to a

proceeding to review and obtain public comment on the effect and

operation of the amendments made by this section [enacting section

334 of this title and amending this section]. In conducting such

review, the Commission shall consider the effectiveness of its

procedures, regulations, policies, standards, and guidelines in

promoting equality of employment opportunity and promotion

opportunity, and particularly the effectiveness of its procedures,

regulations, policies, standards, and guidelines in promoting the

congressional policy favoring increased employment opportunity for

women and minorities in positions of management authority. The

Commission shall forward to the Congress such legislative

recommendations to improve equal employment opportunity in the

broadcasting and cable industries as it deems necessary."

-SECREF-

SECTION REFERRED TO IN OTHER SECTIONS

This section is referred to in section 573 of this title.

-End-

-CITE-

47 USC Sec. 555 01/06/03

-EXPCITE-

TITLE 47 - TELEGRAPHS, TELEPHONES, AND RADIOTELEGRAPHS

CHAPTER 5 - WIRE OR RADIO COMMUNICATION

SUBCHAPTER V09A - CABLE COMMUNICATIONS

Part IV - Miscellaneous Provisions

-HEAD-

Sec. 555. Judicial proceedings

-STATUTE-

(a) Actions to review determinations by franchising authorities

Any cable operator adversely affected by any final determination

made by a franchising authority under section 541(a)(1), 545 or 546

of this title may commence an action within 120 days after

receiving notice of such determination, which may be brought in -

(1) the district court of the United States for any judicial

district in which the cable system is located; or

(2) in any State court of general jurisdiction having

jurisdiction over the parties.

(b) Available relief

The court may award any appropriate relief consistent with the

provisions of the relevant section described in subsection (a) of

this section and with the provisions of subsection (a) of this

section.

(c) Review of constitutionality of sections 534 and 535

(1) Notwithstanding any other provision of law, any civil action

challenging the constitutionality of section 534 or 535 of this

title or any provision thereof shall be heard by a district court

of three judges convened pursuant to the provisions of section 2284

of title 28.

(2) Notwithstanding any other provision of law, an interlocutory

or final judgment, decree, or order of the court of three judges in

an action under paragraph (1) holding section 534 or 535 of this

title or any provision thereof unconstitutional shall be reviewable

as a matter of right by direct appeal to the Supreme Court. Any

such appeal shall be filed not more than 20 days after entry of

such judgment, decree, or order.

-SOURCE-

(June 19, 1934, ch. 652, title VI, Sec. 635, as added Pub. L.

98-549, Sec. 2, Oct. 30, 1984, 98 Stat. 2800; amended Pub. L.

102-385, Secs. 7(a)(2), 23, 24(b), Oct. 5, 1992, 106 Stat. 1483,

1500, 1501.)

-MISC1-

AMENDMENTS

1992 - Subsec. (a). Pub. L. 102-385, Sec. 7(a)(2), inserted

"541(a)(1)," after "section".

Subsec. (b). Pub. L. 102-385, Sec. 24(b), inserted "and with the

provisions of subsection (a) of this section" after "subsection (a)

of this section".

Subsec. (c). Pub. L. 102-385, Sec. 23, added subsec. (c).

EFFECTIVE DATE OF 1992 AMENDMENT

Amendment by Pub. L. 102-385 effective 60 days after Oct. 5,

1992, see section 28 of Pub. L. 102-385, set out as a note under

section 325 of this title.

EFFECTIVE DATE

Section effective 60 days after Oct. 30, 1984, except where

otherwise expressly provided, see section 9(a) of Pub. L. 98-549,

set out as a note under section 521 of this title.

-SECREF-

SECTION REFERRED TO IN OTHER SECTIONS

This section is referred to in sections 541, 545, 546 of this

title.

-End-

-CITE-

47 USC Sec. 555a 01/06/03

-EXPCITE-

TITLE 47 - TELEGRAPHS, TELEPHONES, AND RADIOTELEGRAPHS

CHAPTER 5 - WIRE OR RADIO COMMUNICATION

SUBCHAPTER V09A - CABLE COMMUNICATIONS

Part IV - Miscellaneous Provisions

-HEAD-

Sec. 555a. Limitation of franchising authority liability

-STATUTE-

(a) Suits for damages prohibited

In any court proceeding pending on or initiated after October 5,

1992, involving any claim against a franchising authority or other

governmental entity, or any official, member, employee, or agent of

such authority or entity, arising from the regulation of cable

service or from a decision of approval or disapproval with respect

to a grant, renewal, transfer, or amendment of a franchise, any

relief, to the extent such relief is required by any other

provision of Federal, State, or local law, shall be limited to

injunctive relief and declaratory relief.

(b) Exception for completed cases

The limitation contained in subsection (a) of this section shall

not apply to actions that, prior to such violation, have been

determined by a final order of a court of binding jurisdiction, no

longer subject to appeal, to be in violation of a cable operator's

rights.

(c) Discrimination claims permitted

Nothing in this section shall be construed as limiting the relief

authorized with respect to any claim against a franchising

authority or other governmental entity, or any official, member,

employee, or agent of such authority or entity, to the extent such

claim involves discrimination on the basis of race, color, sex,

age, religion, national origin, or handicap.

(d) Rule of construction

Nothing in this section shall be construed as creating or

authorizing liability of any kind, under any law, for any action or

failure to act relating to cable service or the granting of a

franchise by any franchising authority or other governmental

entity, or any official, member, employee, or agent of such

authority or entity.

-SOURCE-

(June 19, 1934, ch. 652, title VI, Sec. 635A, as added Pub. L.

102-385, Sec. 24(a), Oct. 5, 1992, 106 Stat. 1500.)

-MISC1-

EFFECTIVE DATE

Section effective 60 days after Oct. 5, 1992, see section 28 of

Pub. L. 102-385, set out as an Effective Date of 1992 Amendment

note under section 325 of this title.

-End-

-CITE-

47 USC Sec. 556 01/06/03

-EXPCITE-

TITLE 47 - TELEGRAPHS, TELEPHONES, AND RADIOTELEGRAPHS

CHAPTER 5 - WIRE OR RADIO COMMUNICATION

SUBCHAPTER V09A - CABLE COMMUNICATIONS

Part IV - Miscellaneous Provisions

-HEAD-

Sec. 556. Coordination of Federal, State, and local authority

-STATUTE-

(a) Regulation by States, political subdivisions, State and local

agencies, and franchising authorities

Nothing in this subchapter shall be construed to affect any

authority of any State, political subdivision, or agency thereof,

or franchising authority, regarding matters of public health,

safety, and welfare, to the extent consistent with the express

provisions of this subchapter.

(b) State jurisdiction with regard to cable services

Nothing in this subchapter shall be construed to restrict a State

from exercising jurisdiction with regard to cable services

consistent with this subchapter.

(c) Preemption

Except as provided in section 557 of this title, any provision of

law of any State, political subdivision, or agency thereof, or

franchising authority, or any provision of any franchise granted by

such authority, which is inconsistent with this chapter shall be

deemed to be preempted and superseded.

(d) "State" defined

For purposes of this section, the term "State" has the meaning

given such term in section 153 of this title.

-SOURCE-

(June 19, 1934, ch. 652, title VI, Sec. 636, as added Pub. L.

98-549, Sec. 2, Oct. 30, 1984, 98 Stat. 2800; amended Pub. L.

104-104, Sec. 3(d)(3), Feb. 8, 1996, 110 Stat. 61.)

-MISC1-

AMENDMENTS

1996 - Subsec. (d). Pub. L. 104-104 substituted "section 153" for

"section 153(v)".

EFFECTIVE DATE

Section effective 60 days after Oct. 30, 1984, except where

otherwise expressly provided, see section 9(a) of Pub. L. 98-549,

set out as a note under section 521 of this title.

-End-

-CITE-

47 USC Sec. 557 01/06/03

-EXPCITE-

TITLE 47 - TELEGRAPHS, TELEPHONES, AND RADIOTELEGRAPHS

CHAPTER 5 - WIRE OR RADIO COMMUNICATION

SUBCHAPTER V09A - CABLE COMMUNICATIONS

Part IV - Miscellaneous Provisions

-HEAD-

Sec. 557. Existing franchises

-STATUTE-

(a) The provisions of -

(1) any franchise in effect on the effective date of this

subchapter, including any such provisions which relate to the

designation, use, or support for the use of channel capacity for

public, educational, or governmental use, and

(2) any law of any State (as defined in section 153 of this

title) in effect on October 30, 1984, or any regulation

promulgated pursuant to such law, which relates to such

designation, use or support of such channel capacity,

shall remain in effect, subject to the express provisions of this

subchapter, and for not longer than the then current remaining term

of the franchise as such franchise existed on such effective date.

(b) For purposes of subsection (a) of this section and other

provisions of this subchapter, a franchise shall be considered in

effect on the effective date of this subchapter if such franchise

was granted on or before such effective date.

-SOURCE-

(June 19, 1934, ch. 652, title VI, Sec. 637, as added Pub. L.

98-549, Sec. 2, Oct. 30, 1984, 98 Stat. 2800; amended Pub. L.

104-104, Sec. 3(d)(3), Feb. 8, 1996, 110 Stat. 61.)

-REFTEXT-

REFERENCES IN TEXT

For "the effective date of this subchapter" and "such effective

date", referred to in subsecs. (a) and (b), as 60 days after Oct.

30, 1984, except where otherwise expressly provided, see section

9(a) of Pub. L. 98-549, set out as an Effective Date note under

section 521 of this title.

-MISC1-

AMENDMENTS

1996 - Subsec. (a)(2). Pub. L. 104-104 substituted "section 153"

for "section 153(v)".

EFFECTIVE DATE

Section effective 60 days after Oct. 30, 1984, except where

otherwise expressly provided, see section 9(a) of Pub. L. 98-549,

set out as a note under section 521 of this title.

-SECREF-

SECTION REFERRED TO IN OTHER SECTIONS

This section is referred to in sections 532, 556 of this title.

-End-

-CITE-

47 USC Sec. 558 01/06/03

-EXPCITE-

TITLE 47 - TELEGRAPHS, TELEPHONES, AND RADIOTELEGRAPHS

CHAPTER 5 - WIRE OR RADIO COMMUNICATION

SUBCHAPTER V09A - CABLE COMMUNICATIONS

Part IV - Miscellaneous Provisions

-HEAD-

Sec. 558. Criminal and civil liability

-STATUTE-

Nothing in this subchapter shall be deemed to affect the criminal

or civil liability of cable programmers or cable operators pursuant

to the Federal, State, or local law of libel, slander, obscenity,

incitement, invasions of privacy, false or misleading advertising,

or other similar laws, except that cable operators shall not incur

any such liability for any program carried on any channel

designated for public, educational, governmental use or on any

other channel obtained under section 532 of this title or under

similar arrangements unless the program involves obscene material.

-SOURCE-

(June 19, 1934, ch. 652, title VI, Sec. 638, as added Pub. L.

98-549, Sec. 2, Oct. 30, 1984, 98 Stat. 2801; amended Pub. L.

102-385, Sec. 10(d), Oct. 5, 1992, 106 Stat. 1486.)

-MISC1-

AMENDMENTS

1992 - Pub. L. 102-385 inserted before period at end "unless the

program involves obscene material".

EFFECTIVE DATE OF 1992 AMENDMENT

Amendment by Pub. L. 102-385 effective 60 days after Oct. 5,

1992, see section 28 of Pub. L. 102-385, set out as a note under

section 325 of this title.

EFFECTIVE DATE

Section effective 60 days after Oct. 30, 1984, except where

otherwise expressly provided, see section 9(a) of Pub. L. 98-549,

set out as a note under section 521 of this title.

-End-

-CITE-

47 USC Sec. 559 01/06/03

-EXPCITE-

TITLE 47 - TELEGRAPHS, TELEPHONES, AND RADIOTELEGRAPHS

CHAPTER 5 - WIRE OR RADIO COMMUNICATION

SUBCHAPTER V09A - CABLE COMMUNICATIONS

Part IV - Miscellaneous Provisions

-HEAD-

Sec. 559. Obscene programming

-STATUTE-

Whoever transmits over any cable system any matter which is

obscene or otherwise unprotected by the Constitution of the United

States shall be fined under title 18 or imprisoned not more than 2

years, or both.

-SOURCE-

(June 19, 1934, ch. 652, title VI, Sec. 639, as added Pub. L.

98-549, Sec. 2, Oct. 30, 1984, 98 Stat. 2801; amended Pub. L.

104-104, title V, Sec. 503, Feb. 8, 1996, 110 Stat. 136.)

-MISC1-

AMENDMENTS

1996 - Pub. L. 104-104 substituted "under title 18" for "not more

than $10,000".

EFFECTIVE DATE

Section effective 60 days after Oct. 30, 1984, except where

otherwise expressly provided, see section 9(a) of Pub. L. 98-549,

set out as a note under section 521 of this title.

-End-

-CITE-

47 USC Sec. 560 01/06/03

-EXPCITE-

TITLE 47 - TELEGRAPHS, TELEPHONES, AND RADIOTELEGRAPHS

CHAPTER 5 - WIRE OR RADIO COMMUNICATION

SUBCHAPTER V09A - CABLE COMMUNICATIONS

Part IV - Miscellaneous Provisions

-HEAD-

Sec. 560. Scrambling of cable channels for nonsubscribers

-STATUTE-

(a) Subscriber request

Upon request by a cable service subscriber, a cable operator

shall, without charge, fully scramble or otherwise fully block the

audio and video programming of each channel carrying such

programming so that one not a subscriber does not receive it.

(b) "Scramble" defined

As used in this section, the term "scramble" means to rearrange

the content of the signal of the programming so that the

programming cannot be viewed or heard in an understandable manner.

-SOURCE-

(June 19, 1934, ch. 652, title VI, Sec. 640, as added Pub. L.

104-104, title V, Sec. 504, Feb. 8, 1996, 110 Stat. 136.)

-End-

-CITE-

47 USC Sec. 561 01/06/03

-EXPCITE-

TITLE 47 - TELEGRAPHS, TELEPHONES, AND RADIOTELEGRAPHS

CHAPTER 5 - WIRE OR RADIO COMMUNICATION

SUBCHAPTER V09A - CABLE COMMUNICATIONS

Part IV - Miscellaneous Provisions

-HEAD-

Sec. 561. Scrambling of sexually explicit adult video service

programming

-STATUTE-

(a) Requirement

In providing sexually explicit adult programming or other

programming that is indecent on any channel of its service

primarily dedicated to sexually-oriented programming, a

multichannel video programming distributor shall fully scramble or

otherwise fully block the video and audio portion of such channel

so that one not a subscriber to such channel or programming does

not receive it.

(b) Implementation

Until a multichannel video programming distributor complies with

the requirement set forth in subsection (a) of this section, the

distributor shall limit the access of children to the programming

referred to in that subsection by not providing such programming

during the hours of the day (as determined by the Commission) when

a significant number of children are likely to view it.

(c) "Scramble" defined

As used in this section, the term "scramble" means to rearrange

the content of the signal of the programming so that the

programming cannot be viewed or heard in an understandable manner.

-SOURCE-

(June 19, 1934, ch. 652, title VI, Sec. 641, as added Pub. L.

104-104, title V, Sec. 505(a), Feb. 8, 1996, 110 Stat. 136.)

-MISC1-

EFFECTIVE DATE

Section 505(b) of Pub. L. 104-104 provided that: "The amendment

made by subsection (a) [enacting this section] shall take effect 30

days after the date of enactment of this Act [Feb. 8, 1996]."

-End-

-CITE-

47 USC Part V - Video Programming Services Provided by

Telephone Companies 01/06/03

-EXPCITE-

TITLE 47 - TELEGRAPHS, TELEPHONES, AND RADIOTELEGRAPHS

CHAPTER 5 - WIRE OR RADIO COMMUNICATION

SUBCHAPTER V09A - CABLE COMMUNICATIONS

Part V - Video Programming Services Provided by Telephone Companies

-HEAD-

PART V - VIDEO PROGRAMMING SERVICES PROVIDED BY TELEPHONE COMPANIES

-End-

-CITE-

47 USC Sec. 571 01/06/03

-EXPCITE-

TITLE 47 - TELEGRAPHS, TELEPHONES, AND RADIOTELEGRAPHS

CHAPTER 5 - WIRE OR RADIO COMMUNICATION

SUBCHAPTER V09A - CABLE COMMUNICATIONS

Part V - Video Programming Services Provided by Telephone Companies

-HEAD-

Sec. 571. Regulatory treatment of video programming services

-STATUTE-

(a) Limitations on cable regulation

(1) Radio-based systems

To the extent that a common carrier (or any other person) is

providing video programming to subscribers using radio

communication, such carrier (or other person) shall be subject to

the requirements of subchapter III of this chapter and section

572 of this title, but shall not otherwise be subject to the

requirements of this subchapter.

(2) Common carriage of video traffic

To the extent that a common carrier is providing transmission

of video programming on a common carrier basis, such carrier

shall be subject to the requirements of subchapter II of this

chapter and section 572 of this title, but shall not otherwise be

subject to the requirements of this subchapter. This paragraph

shall not affect the treatment under section 522(7)(C) of this

title of a facility of a common carrier as a cable system.

(3) Cable systems and open video systems

To the extent that a common carrier is providing video

programming to its subscribers in any manner other than that

described in paragraphs (1) and (2) -

(A) such carrier shall be subject to the requirements of this

subchapter, unless such programming is provided by means of an

open video system for which the Commission has approved a

certification under section 573 of this title; or

(B) if such programming is provided by means of an open video

system for which the Commission has approved a certification

under section 573 of this title, such carrier shall be subject

to the requirements of this part, but shall be subject to parts

I through IV of this subchapter only as provided in 573(c) of

this title.

(4) Election to operate as open video system

A common carrier that is providing video programming in a

manner described in paragraph (1) or (2), or a combination

thereof, may elect to provide such programming by means of an

open video system that complies with section 573 of this title.

If the Commission approves such carrier's certification under

section 573 of this title, such carrier shall be subject to the

requirements of this part, but shall be subject to parts I

through IV of this subchapter only as provided in 573(c) of this

title.

(b) Limitations on interconnection obligations

A local exchange carrier that provides cable service through an

open video system or a cable system shall not be required, pursuant

to subchapter II of this chapter, to make capacity available on a

nondiscriminatory basis to any other person for the provision of

cable service directly to subscribers.

(c) Additional regulatory relief

A common carrier shall not be required to obtain a certificate

under section 214 of this title with respect to the establishment

or operation of a system for the delivery of video programming.

-SOURCE-

(June 19, 1934, ch. 652, title VI, Sec. 651, as added Pub. L.

104-104, title III, Sec. 302(a), Feb. 8, 1996, 110 Stat. 118.)

-End-

-CITE-

47 USC Sec. 572 01/06/03

-EXPCITE-

TITLE 47 - TELEGRAPHS, TELEPHONES, AND RADIOTELEGRAPHS

CHAPTER 5 - WIRE OR RADIO COMMUNICATION

SUBCHAPTER V09A - CABLE COMMUNICATIONS

Part V - Video Programming Services Provided by Telephone Companies

-HEAD-

Sec. 572. Prohibition on buy outs

-STATUTE-

(a) Acquisitions by carriers

No local exchange carrier or any affiliate of such carrier owned

by, operated by, controlled by, or under common control with such

carrier may purchase or otherwise acquire directly or indirectly

more than a 10 percent financial interest, or any management

interest, in any cable operator providing cable service within the

local exchange carrier's telephone service area.

(b) Acquisitions by cable operators

No cable operator or affiliate of a cable operator that is owned

by, operated by, controlled by, or under common ownership with such

cable operator may purchase or otherwise acquire, directly or

indirectly, more than a 10 percent financial interest, or any

management interest, in any local exchange carrier providing

telephone exchange service within such cable operator's franchise

area.

(c) Joint ventures

A local exchange carrier and a cable operator whose telephone

service area and cable franchise area, respectively, are in the

same market may not enter into any joint venture or partnership to

provide video programming directly to subscribers or to provide

telecommunications services within such market.

(d) Exceptions

(1) Rural systems

Notwithstanding subsections (a), (b), and (c) of this section,

a local exchange carrier (with respect to a cable system located

in its telephone service area) and a cable operator (with respect

to the facilities of a local exchange carrier used to provide

telephone exchange service in its cable franchise area) may

obtain a controlling interest in, management interest in, or

enter into a joint venture or partnership with the operator of

such system or facilities for the use of such system or

facilities to the extent that -

(A) such system or facilities only serve incorporated or

unincorporated -

(i) places or territories that have fewer than 35,000

inhabitants; and

(ii) are outside an urbanized area, as defined by the

Bureau of the Census; and

(B) in the case of a local exchange carrier, such system, in

the aggregate with any other system in which such carrier has

an interest, serves less than 10 percent of the households in

the telephone service area of such carrier.

(2) Joint use

Notwithstanding subsection (c) of this section, a local

exchange carrier may obtain, with the concurrence of the cable

operator on the rates, terms, and conditions, the use of that

part of the transmission facilities of a cable system extending

from the last multi-user terminal to the premises of the end

user, if such use is reasonably limited in scope and duration, as

determined by the Commission.

(3) Acquisitions in competitive markets

Notwithstanding subsections (a) and (c) of this section, a

local exchange carrier may obtain a controlling interest in, or

form a joint venture or other partnership with, or provide

financing to, a cable system (hereinafter in this paragraph

referred to as "the subject cable system"), if -

(A) the subject cable system operates in a television market

that is not in the top 25 markets, and such market has more

than 1 cable system operator, and the subject cable system is

not the cable system with the most subscribers in such

television market;

(B) the subject cable system and the cable system with the

most subscribers in such television market held on May 1, 1995,

cable television franchises from the largest municipality in

the television market and the boundaries of such franchises

were identical on such date;

(C) the subject cable system is not owned by or under common

ownership or control of any one of the 50 cable system

operators with the most subscribers as such operators existed

on May 1, 1995; and

(D) the system with the most subscribers in the television

market is owned by or under common ownership or control of any

one of the 10 largest cable system operators as such operators

existed on May 1, 1995.

(4) Exempt cable systems

Subsection (a) of this section does not apply to any cable

system if -

(A) the cable system serves no more than 17,000 cable

subscribers, of which no less than 8,000 live within an urban

area, and no less than 6,000 live within a nonurbanized area as

of June 1, 1995;

(B) the cable system is not owned by, or under common

ownership or control with, any of the 50 largest cable system

operators in existence on June 1, 1995; and

(C) the cable system operates in a television market that was

not in the top 100 television markets as of June 1, 1995.

(5) Small cable systems in nonurban areas

Notwithstanding subsections (a) and (c) of this section, a

local exchange carrier with less than $100,000,000 in annual

operating revenues (or any affiliate of such carrier owned by,

operated by, controlled by, or under common control with such

carrier) may purchase or otherwise acquire more than a 10 percent

financial interest in, or any management interest in, or enter

into a joint venture or partnership with, any cable system within

the local exchange carrier's telephone service area that serves

no more than 20,000 cable subscribers, if no more than 12,000 of

those subscribers live within an urbanized area, as defined by

the Bureau of the Census.

(6) Waivers

The Commission may waive the restrictions of subsections (!1)

(a), (b), or (c) of this section only if -

(A) the Commission determines that, because of the nature of

the market served by the affected cable system or facilities

used to provide telephone exchange service -

(i) the affected cable operator or local exchange carrier

would be subjected to undue economic distress by the

enforcement of such provisions;

(ii) the system or facilities would not be economically

viable if such provisions were enforced; or

(iii) the anticompetitive effects of the proposed

transaction are clearly outweighed in the public interest by

the probable effect of the transaction in meeting the

convenience and needs of the community to be served; and

(B) the local franchising authority approves of such waiver.

(e) "Telephone service area" defined

For purposes of this section, the term "telephone service area"

when used in connection with a common carrier subject in whole or

in part to subchapter II of this chapter means the area within

which such carrier provided telephone exchange service as of

January 1, 1993, but if any common carrier after such date

transfers its telephone exchange service facilities to another

common carrier, the area to which such facilities provide telephone

exchange service shall be treated as part of the telephone service

area of the acquiring common carrier and not of the selling common

carrier.

-SOURCE-

(June 19, 1934, ch. 652, title VI, Sec. 652, as added Pub. L.

104-104, title III, Sec. 302(a), Feb. 8, 1996, 110 Stat. 119.)

-SECREF-

SECTION REFERRED TO IN OTHER SECTIONS

This section is referred to in section 571 of this title.

-FOOTNOTE-

(!1) So in original. Probably should be "subsection".

-End-

-CITE-

47 USC Sec. 573 01/06/03

-EXPCITE-

TITLE 47 - TELEGRAPHS, TELEPHONES, AND RADIOTELEGRAPHS

CHAPTER 5 - WIRE OR RADIO COMMUNICATION

SUBCHAPTER V09A - CABLE COMMUNICATIONS

Part V - Video Programming Services Provided by Telephone Companies

-HEAD-

Sec. 573. Establishment of open video systems

-STATUTE-

(a) Open video systems

(1) Certificates of compliance

A local exchange carrier may provide cable service to its cable

service subscribers in its telephone service area through an open

video system that complies with this section. To the extent

permitted by such regulations as the Commission may prescribe

consistent with the public interest, convenience, and necessity,

an operator of a cable system or any other person may provide

video programming through an open video system that complies with

this section. An operator of an open video system shall qualify

for reduced regulatory burdens under subsection (c) of this

section if the operator of such system certifies to the

Commission that such carrier complies with the Commission's

regulations under subsection (b) of this section and the

Commission approves such certification. The Commission shall

publish notice of the receipt of any such certification and shall

act to approve or disapprove any such certification within 10

days after receipt of such certification.

(2) Dispute resolution

The Commission shall have the authority to resolve disputes

under this section and the regulations prescribed thereunder. Any

such dispute shall be resolved within 180 days after notice of

such dispute is submitted to the Commission. At that time or

subsequently in a separate damages proceeding, the Commission

may, in the case of any violation of this section, require

carriage, award damages to any person denied carriage, or any

combination of such sanctions. Any aggrieved party may seek any

other remedy available under this chapter.

(b) Commission actions

(1) Regulations required

Within 6 months after February 8, 1996, the Commission shall

complete all actions necessary (including any reconsideration) to

prescribe regulations that -

(A) except as required pursuant to section 531, 534, or 535

of this title, prohibit an operator of an open video system

from discriminating among video programming providers with

regard to carriage on its open video system, and ensure that

the rates, terms, and conditions for such carriage are just and

reasonable, and are not unjustly or unreasonably

discriminatory;

(B) if demand exceeds the channel capacity of the open video

system, prohibit an operator of an open video system and its

affiliates from selecting the video programming services for

carriage on more than one-third of the activated channel

capacity on such system, but nothing in this subparagraph shall

be construed to limit the number of channels that the carrier

and its affiliates may offer to provide directly to

subscribers;

(C) permit an operator of an open video system to carry on

only one channel any video programming service that is offered

by more than one video programming provider (including the

local exchange carrier's video programming affiliate):

Provided, That subscribers have ready and immediate access to

any such video programming service;

(D) extend to the distribution of video programming over open

video systems the Commission's regulations concerning sports

exclusivity (47 C.F.R. 76.67), network nonduplication (47

C.F.R. 76.92 et seq.), and syndicated exclusivity (47 C.F.R.

76.151 et seq.); and

(E)(i) prohibit an operator of an open video system from

unreasonably discriminating in favor of the operator or its

affiliates with regard to material or information (including

advertising) provided by the operator to subscribers for the

purposes of selecting programming on the open video system, or

in the way such material or information is presented to

subscribers;

(ii) require an operator of an open video system to ensure

that video programming providers or copyright holders (or both)

are able suitably and uniquely to identify their programming

services to subscribers;

(iii) if such identification is transmitted as part of the

programming signal, require the carrier to transmit such

identification without change or alteration; and

(iv) prohibit an operator of an open video system from

omitting television broadcast stations or other unaffiliated

video programming services carried on such system from any

navigational device, guide, or menu.

(2) Consumer access

Subject to the requirements of paragraph (1) and the

regulations thereunder, nothing in this section prohibits a

common carrier or its affiliate from negotiating mutually

agreeable terms and conditions with over-the-air broadcast

stations and other unaffiliated video programming providers to

allow consumer access to their signals on any level or screen of

any gateway, menu, or other program guide, whether provided by

the carrier or its affiliate.

(c) Reduced regulatory burdens for open video systems

(1) In general

Any provision that applies to a cable operator under -

(A) sections 533 (other than subsection (a) thereof), 536,

543(f), 548, 551, and 554 of this title, shall apply,

(B) sections 531, 534, and 535 of this title, and section 325

of this title, shall apply in accordance with the regulations

prescribed under paragraph (2), and

(C) sections 532 and 537 of this title, and parts III and IV

of this subchapter (other than sections 543(f), 548, 551, and

554 of this title), shall not apply,

to any operator of an open video system for which the Commission

has approved a certification under this section.

(2) Implementation

(A) Commission action

In the rulemaking proceeding to prescribe the regulations

required by subsection (b)(1) of this section, the Commission

shall, to the extent possible, impose obligations that are no

greater or lesser than the obligations contained in the

provisions described in paragraph (1)(B) of this subsection.

The Commission shall complete all action (including any

reconsideration) to prescribe such regulations no later than 6

months after February 8, 1996.

(B) Fees

An operator of an open video system under this part may be

subject to the payment of fees on the gross revenues of the

operator for the provision of cable service imposed by a local

franchising authority or other governmental entity, in lieu of

the franchise fees permitted under section 542 of this title.

The rate at which such fees are imposed shall not exceed the

rate at which franchise fees are imposed on any cable operator

transmitting video programming in the franchise area, as

determined in accordance with regulations prescribed by the

Commission. An operator of an open video system may designate

that portion of a subscriber's bill attributable to the fee

under this subparagraph as a separate item on the bill.

(3) Regulatory streamlining

With respect to the establishment and operation of an open

video system, the requirements of this section shall apply in

lieu of, and not in addition to, the requirements of subchapter

II of this chapter.

(4) Treatment as cable operator

Nothing in this chapter precludes a video programming provider

making use of an open video system from being treated as an

operator of a cable system for purposes of section 111 of title

17.

(d) "Telephone service area" defined

For purposes of this section, the term "telephone service area"

when used in connection with a common carrier subject in whole or

in part to subchapter II of this chapter means the area within

which such carrier is offering telephone exchange service.

-SOURCE-

(June 19, 1934, ch. 652, title VI, Sec. 653, as added Pub. L.

104-104, title III, Sec. 302(a), Feb. 8, 1996, 110 Stat. 121.)

-SECREF-

SECTION REFERRED TO IN OTHER SECTIONS

This section is referred to in sections 522, 571 of this title.

-End-

-CITE-

47 USC SUBCHAPTER VI - MISCELLANEOUS PROVISIONS 01/06/03

-EXPCITE-

TITLE 47 - TELEGRAPHS, TELEPHONES, AND RADIOTELEGRAPHS

CHAPTER 5 - WIRE OR RADIO COMMUNICATION

SUBCHAPTER VI - MISCELLANEOUS PROVISIONS

-HEAD-

SUBCHAPTER VI - MISCELLANEOUS PROVISIONS

-End-

-CITE-

47 USC Sec. 601 01/06/03

-EXPCITE-

TITLE 47 - TELEGRAPHS, TELEPHONES, AND RADIOTELEGRAPHS

CHAPTER 5 - WIRE OR RADIO COMMUNICATION

SUBCHAPTER VI - MISCELLANEOUS PROVISIONS

-HEAD-

Sec. 601. Interstate Commerce Commission and Postmaster General;

duties, powers, and functions transferred to Commission

-STATUTE-

(a) All duties, powers, and functions of the Interstate Commerce

Commission under sections 9 to 15 of this title, relating to

operation of telegraph lines by railroad and telegraph companies

granted Government aid in the construction of their lines, are

imposed upon and vested in the Commission: Provided, That such

transfer of duties, powers, and functions shall not be construed to

affect the duties, powers, functions, or jurisdiction of the

Interstate Commerce Commission under, or to interfere with or

prevent the enforcement of, subtitle IV of title 49.

(b) All duties, powers, and functions of the Postmaster General

with respect to telegraph companies and telegraph lines under any

existing provision of law are imposed upon and vested in the

Commission.

-SOURCE-

(June 19, 1934, ch. 652, title VII, Sec. 701, formerly title VI,

Sec. 601, 48 Stat. 1101; renumbered title VII, Sec. 701, Pub. L.

98-549, Sec. 6(a), Oct. 30, 1984, 98 Stat. 2804.)

-COD-

CODIFICATION

In subsec. (a), "subtitle IV of title 49" substituted for "the

Interstate Commerce Act and all Acts amendatory thereof or

supplemental thereto [49 U.S.C. 1 et seq.]" on authority of Pub. L.

95-473, Sec. 3(b), Oct. 17, 1978, 92 Stat. 1466, the first section

of which enacted subtitle IV (Sec. 10101 et seq.) of Title 49,

Transportation.

-TRANS-

TRANSFER OF FUNCTIONS

Office of Postmaster General of Post Office Department abolished

and functions, powers, and duties of Postmaster General transferred

to United States Postal Service by Pub. L. 91-375, Sec. 4(a), Aug.

12, 1970, 84 Stat. 773, set out as a note under section 201 of

Title 39, Postal Service.

ABOLITION OF INTERSTATE COMMERCE COMMISSION AND TRANSFER OF

FUNCTIONS

Interstate Commerce Commission abolished and functions of

Commission transferred, except as otherwise provided in Pub. L.

104-88, to Surface Transportation Board effective Jan. 1, 1996, by

section 702 of Title 49, Transportation, and section 101 of Pub. L.

104-88, set out as a note under section 701 of Title 49. References

to Interstate Commerce Commission deemed to refer to Surface

Transportation Board, a member or employee of the Board, or

Secretary of Transportation, as appropriate, see section 205 of

Pub. L. 104-88, set out as a note under section 701 of Title 49.

-End-

-CITE-

47 USC Secs. 602, 603 01/06/03

-EXPCITE-

TITLE 47 - TELEGRAPHS, TELEPHONES, AND RADIOTELEGRAPHS

CHAPTER 5 - WIRE OR RADIO COMMUNICATION

SUBCHAPTER VI - MISCELLANEOUS PROVISIONS

-HEAD-

Secs. 602, 603. Repealed. Pub. L. 103-414, title III, Sec.

304(a)(13), Oct. 25, 1994, 108 Stat. 4297

-MISC1-

Section 602, acts June 19, 1934, ch. 652, title VII, Sec. 702(a),

(b), formerly title VI, Sec. 602(a), (b), 48 Stat. 1102; May 20,

1937, ch. 229, Sec. 15, 50 Stat. 197; Mar. 18, 1940, ch. 66, 54

Stat. 54; renumbered title VII, Sec. 702(a), (b), Oct. 30, 1984,

Pub. L. 98-549, Sec. 6(a), 98 Stat. 2804, repealed certain prior

provisions relating to communications and directed Commission to

study and report, not later than Jan. 1, 1941, on radio

requirements necessary for ships navigating Great Lakes and inland

waters of the United States.

Section 603, act June 19, 1934, ch. 652, title VII, Sec. 703,

formerly title VI, Sec. 603, 48 Stat. 1102; renumbered title VII,

Sec. 703, Oct. 30, 1984, Pub. L. 98-549, Sec. 6(a), 98 Stat. 2804,

related to transfers from Federal Radio Commission, Interstate

Commerce Commission, and Postmaster General.

-End-

-CITE-

47 USC Sec. 604 01/06/03

-EXPCITE-

TITLE 47 - TELEGRAPHS, TELEPHONES, AND RADIOTELEGRAPHS

CHAPTER 5 - WIRE OR RADIO COMMUNICATION

SUBCHAPTER VI - MISCELLANEOUS PROVISIONS

-HEAD-

Sec. 604. Effect of transfer

-STATUTE-

(a) Orders, determinations, rules, regulations, permits, contracts,

licenses, and privileges

All orders, determinations, rules, regulations, permits,

contracts, licenses, and privileges which have been issued, made,

or granted by the Interstate Commerce Commission, the Federal Radio

Commission, or the Postmaster General, under any provision of law

repealed or amended by this chapter or in the exercise of duties,

powers, or functions transferred to the Commission by this chapter,

and which are in effect at the time this section takes effect,

shall continue in effect until modified, terminated, superseded, or

repealed by the Commission or by operation of law.

(b) Availability of records

All records transferred to the Commission under this chapter

shall be available for use by the Commission to the same extent as

if such records were originally records of the Commission. All

final valuations and determinations of depreciation charges by the

Interstate Commerce Commission with respect to common carriers

engaged in radio or wire communication, and all orders of the

Interstate Commerce Commission with respect to such valuations and

determinations, shall have the same force and effect as though made

by the Commission under this chapter.

-SOURCE-

(June 19, 1934, ch. 652, title VII, Sec. 704, formerly title VI,

Sec. 604, 48 Stat. 1103; renumbered title VII, Sec. 704, Pub. L.

98-549, Sec. 6(a), Oct. 30, 1984, 98 Stat. 2804; amended Pub. L.

103-414, title III, Sec. 304(a)(14), Oct. 25, 1994, 108 Stat.

4297.)

-REFTEXT-

REFERENCES IN TEXT

This chapter, referred to in text, was in the original "this

Act", meaning act June 19, 1934, ch. 652, 48 Stat. 1064, as

amended, known as the Communications Act of 1934, which is

classified principally to this chapter. For complete classification

of this Act to the Code, see section 609 of this title and Tables.

-MISC1-

AMENDMENTS

1994 - Subsecs. (b), (c). Pub. L. 103-414 redesignated subsec.

(c) as (b) and struck out former subsec. (b) which read as follows:

"Any proceeding, hearing, or investigation commenced or pending

before the Federal Radio Commission, the Interstate Commerce

Commission, or the Postmaster General, at the time of the

organization of the Commission, shall be continued by the

Commission in the same manner as though originally commenced before

the Commission, if such proceeding, hearing, or investigation (1)

involves the administration of duties, powers, and functions

transferred to the Commission by this chapter, or (2) involves the

exercise of jurisdiction similar to that granted to the Commission

under the provisions of this chapter."

Subsec. (d). Pub. L. 103-414, Sec. 303(a)(14)(A), struck out

subsec. (d) which read as follows: "The provisions of this chapter

shall not affect suits commenced prior to the date of the

organization of the Commission; and all such suits shall be

continued, proceedings therein had, appeals therein taken and

judgments therein rendered, in the same manner and with the same

effect as if this chapter had not been passed. No suit, action, or

other proceeding lawfully commenced by or against any agency or

officer of the United States, in relation to the discharge of

official duties, shall abate by reason of any transfer of

authority, power, and duties from such agency or officer to the

Commission under the provisions of this chapter, but the court,

upon motion or supplemental petition filed at any time within

twelve months after such transfer, showing the necessity for a

survival of such suit, action, or other proceeding to obtain a

settlement of the questions involved, may allow the same to be

maintained by or against the Commission."

-TRANS-

TRANSFER OF FUNCTIONS

Office of Postmaster General of Post Office Department abolished

and functions, powers, and duties of Postmaster General transferred

to United States Postal Service by Pub. L. 91-375, Sec. 4(a), Aug.

12, 1970, 84 Stat. 773, set out as a note under section 201 of

Title 39, Postal Service.

ABOLITION OF INTERSTATE COMMERCE COMMISSION AND TRANSFER OF

FUNCTIONS

Interstate Commerce Commission abolished and functions of

Commission transferred, except as otherwise provided in Pub. L.

104-88, to Surface Transportation Board effective Jan. 1, 1996, by

section 702 of Title 49, Transportation, and section 101 of Pub. L.

104-88, set out as a note under section 701 of Title 49. References

to Interstate Commerce Commission deemed to refer to Surface

Transportation Board, a member or employee of the Board, or

Secretary of Transportation, as appropriate, see section 205 of

Pub. L. 104-88, set out as a note under section 701 of Title 49.

-End-

-CITE-

47 USC Sec. 605 01/06/03

-EXPCITE-

TITLE 47 - TELEGRAPHS, TELEPHONES, AND RADIOTELEGRAPHS

CHAPTER 5 - WIRE OR RADIO COMMUNICATION

SUBCHAPTER VI - MISCELLANEOUS PROVISIONS

-HEAD-

Sec. 605. Unauthorized publication or use of communications

-STATUTE-

(a) Practices prohibited

Except as authorized by chapter 119, title 18, no person

receiving, assisting in receiving, transmitting, or assisting in

transmitting, any interstate or foreign communication by wire or

radio shall divulge or publish the existence, contents, substance,

purport, effect, or meaning thereof, except through authorized

channels of transmission or reception, (1) to any person other than

the addressee, his agent, or attorney, (2) to a person employed or

authorized to forward such communication to its destination, (3) to

proper accounting or distributing officers of the various

communicating centers over which the communication may be passed,

(4) to the master of a ship under whom he is serving, (5) in

response to a subpena issued by a court of competent jurisdiction,

or (6) on demand of other lawful authority. No person not being

authorized by the sender shall intercept any radio communication

and divulge or publish the existence, contents, substance, purport,

effect, or meaning of such intercepted communication to any person.

No person not being entitled thereto shall receive or assist in

receiving any interstate or foreign communication by radio and use

such communication (or any information therein contained) for his

own benefit or for the benefit of another not entitled thereto. No

person having received any intercepted radio communication or

having become acquainted with the contents, substance, purport,

effect, or meaning of such communication (or any part thereof)

knowing that such communication was intercepted, shall divulge or

publish the existence, contents, substance, purport, effect, or

meaning of such communication (or any part thereof) or use such

communication (or any information therein contained) for his own

benefit or for the benefit of another not entitled thereto. This

section shall not apply to the receiving, divulging, publishing, or

utilizing the contents of any radio communication which is

transmitted by any station for the use of the general public, which

relates to ships, aircraft, vehicles, or persons in distress, or

which is transmitted by an amateur radio station operator or by a

citizens band radio operator.

(b) Exceptions

The provisions of subsection (a) of this section shall not apply

to the interception or receipt by any individual, or the assisting

(including the manufacture or sale) of such interception or

receipt, of any satellite cable programming for private viewing if

-

(1) the programming involved is not encrypted; and

(2)(A) a marketing system is not established under which -

(i) an agent or agents have been lawfully designated for the

purpose of authorizing private viewing by individuals, and

(ii) such authorization is available to the individual

involved from the appropriate agent or agents; or

(B) a marketing system described in subparagraph (A) is

established and the individuals receiving such programming has

obtained authorization for private viewing under that system.

(c) Scrambling of Public Broadcasting Service programming

No person shall encrypt or continue to encrypt satellite

delivered programs included in the National Program Service of the

Public Broadcasting Service and intended for public viewing by

retransmission by television broadcast stations; except that as

long as at least one unencrypted satellite transmission of any

program subject to this subsection is provided, this subsection

shall not prohibit additional encrypted satellite transmissions of

the same program.

(d) Definitions

For purposes of this section -

(1) the term "satellite cable programming" means video

programming which is transmitted via satellite and which is

primarily intended for the direct receipt by cable operators for

their retransmission to cable subscribers;

(2) the term "agent", with respect to any person, includes an

employee of such person;

(3) the term "encrypt", when used with respect to satellite

cable programming, means to transmit such programming in a form

whereby the aural and visual characteristics (or both) are

modified or altered for the purpose of preventing the

unauthorized receipt of such programming by persons without

authorized equipment which is designed to eliminate the effects

of such modification or alteration;

(4) the term "private viewing" means the viewing for private

use in an individual's dwelling unit by means of equipment, owned

or operated by such individual, capable of receiving satellite

cable programming directly from a satellite;

(5) the term "private financial gain" shall not include the

gain resulting to any individual for the private use in such

individual's dwelling unit of any programming for which the

individual has not obtained authorization for that use; and

(6) the term "any person aggrieved" shall include any person

with proprietary rights in the intercepted communication by wire

or radio, including wholesale or retail distributors of satellite

cable programming, and, in the case of a violation of paragraph

(4) of subsection (e) of this section, shall also include any

person engaged in the lawful manufacture, distribution, or sale

of equipment necessary to authorize or receive satellite cable

programming.

(e) Penalties; civil actions; remedies; attorney's fees and costs;

computation of damages; regulation by State and local authorities

(1) Any person who willfully violates subsection (a) of this

section shall be fined not more than $2,000 or imprisoned for not

more than 6 months, or both.

(2) Any person who violates subsection (a) of this section

willfully and for purposes of direct or indirect commercial

advantage or private financial gain shall be fined not more than

$50,000 or imprisoned for not more than 2 years, or both, for the

first such conviction and shall be fined not more than $100,000 or

imprisoned for not more than 5 years, or both, for any subsequent

conviction.

(3)(A) Any person aggrieved by any violation of subsection (a) of

this section or paragraph (4) of this subsection may bring a civil

action in a United States district court or in any other court of

competent jurisdiction.

(B) The court -

(i) may grant temporary and final injunctions on such terms as

it may deem reasonable to prevent or restrain violations of

subsection (a) of this section;

(ii) may award damages as described in subparagraph (C); and

(iii) shall direct the recovery of full costs, including

awarding reasonable attorneys' fees to an aggrieved party who

prevails.

(C)(i) Damages awarded by any court under this section shall be

computed, at the election of the aggrieved party, in accordance

with either of the following subclauses;

(I) the party aggrieved may recover the actual damages suffered

by him as a result of the violation and any profits of the

violator that are attributable to the violation which are not

taken into account in computing the actual damages; in

determining the violator's profits, the party aggrieved shall be

required to prove only the violator's gross revenue, and the

violator shall be required to prove his deductible expenses and

the elements of profit attributable to factors other than the

violation; or

(II) the party aggrieved may recover an award of statutory

damages for each violation of subsection (a) of this section

involved in the action in a sum of not less than $1,000 or more

than $10,000, as the court considers just, and for each violation

of paragraph (4) of this subsection involved in the action an

aggrieved party may recover statutory damages in a sum not less

than $10,000, or more than $100,000, as the court considers just.

(ii) In any case in which the court finds that the violation was

committed willfully and for purposes of direct or indirect

commercial advantage or private financial gain, the court in its

discretion may increase the award of damages, whether actual or

statutory, by an amount of not more than $100,000 for each

violation of subsection (a) of this section.

(iii) In any case where the court finds that the violator was not

aware and had no reason to believe that his acts constituted a

violation of this section, the court in its discretion may reduce

the award of damages to a sum of not less than $250.

(4) Any person who manufactures, assembles, modifies, imports,

exports, sells, or distributes any electronic, mechanical, or other

device or equipment, knowing or having reason to know that the

device or equipment is primarily of assistance in the unauthorized

decryption of satellite cable programming, or direct-to-home

satellite services, or is intended for any other activity

prohibited by subsection (a) of this section, shall be fined not

more than $500,000 for each violation, or imprisoned for not more

than 5 years for each violation, or both. For purposes of all

penalties and remedies established for violations of this

paragraph, the prohibited activity established herein as it applies

to each such device shall be deemed a separate violation.

(5) The penalties under this subsection shall be in addition to

those prescribed under any other provision of this subchapter.

(6) Nothing in this subsection shall prevent any State, or

political subdivision thereof, from enacting or enforcing any laws

with respect to the importation, sale, manufacture, or distribution

of equipment by any person with the intent of its use to assist in

the interception or receipt of radio communications prohibited by

subsection (a) of this section.

(f) Rights, obligations, and liabilities under other laws

unaffected

Nothing in this section shall affect any right, obligation, or

liability under title 17, any rule, regulation, or order

thereunder, or any other applicable Federal, State, or local law.

(g) Universal encryption standard

The Commission shall initiate an inquiry concerning the need for

a universal encryption standard that permits decryption of

satellite cable programming intended for private viewing. In

conducting such inquiry, the Commission shall take into account -

(1) consumer costs and benefits of any such standard, including

consumer investment in equipment in operation;

(2) incorporation of technological enhancements, including

advanced television formats;

(3) whether any such standard would effectively prevent present

and future unauthorized decryption of satellite cable

programming;

(4) the costs and benefits of any such standard on other

authorized users of encrypted satellite cable programming,

including cable systems and satellite master antenna television

systems;

(5) the effect of any such standard on competition in the

manufacture of decryption equipment; and

(6) the impact of the time delay associated with the Commission

procedures necessary for establishment of such standards.

(h) Rulemaking for encryption standard

If the Commission finds, based on the information gathered from

the inquiry required by subsection (g) of this section, that a

universal encryption standard is necessary and in the public

interest, the Commission shall initiate a rulemaking to establish

such a standard.

-SOURCE-

(June 19, 1934, ch. 652, title VII, Sec. 705, formerly title VI,

Sec. 605, 48 Stat. 1103; Pub. L. 90-351, title III, Sec. 803, June

19, 1968, 82 Stat. 223; Pub. L. 97-259, title I, Sec. 126, Sept.

13, 1982, 96 Stat. 1099; renumbered title VII, Sec. 705, and

amended Pub. L. 98-549, Secs. 5(a), 6(a), Oct. 30, 1984, 98 Stat.

2802, 2804; Pub. L. 100-626, Sec. 11, Nov. 7, 1988, 102 Stat. 3211;

Pub. L. 100-667, title II, Secs. 204, 205, Nov. 16, 1988, 102 Stat.

3958, 3959; Pub. L. 103-414, title III, Secs. 303(a)(25)-(28),

304(a)(15), Oct. 25, 1994, 108 Stat. 4295-4297; Pub. L. 104-104,

title II, Sec. 205(a), Feb. 8, 1996, 110 Stat. 114.)

-MISC1-

AMENDMENTS

1996 - Subsec. (e)(4). Pub. L. 104-104 inserted "or

direct-to-home satellite services," after "programming,".

1994 - Subsec. (d)(6). Pub. L. 103-414, Sec. 303(a)(25),

substituted "subsection (e)" for "subsection (d)".

Subsec. (e)(3)(A). Pub. L. 103-414, Sec. 303(a)(26), substituted

"paragraph (4) of this subsection" for "paragraph (4) of subsection

(d) of this section".

Subsec. (f). Pub. L. 103-414, Sec. 303(a)(27), redesignated

subsec. (f), relating to universal encryption standard, as (g).

Subsec. (g). Pub. L. 103-414, Sec. 304(a)(15), which directed

substitution of "The Commission" for "within 6 months after

November 16, 1988, the Federal Communications Commission", was

executed by making the substitution in text which read "Within 6

months" rather than "within 6 months" in introductory provisions to

reflect the probable intent of Congress.

Pub. L. 103-414, Sec. 303(a)(27), redesignated subsec. (f),

relating to universal encryption standard, as (g). Former subsec.

(g) redesignated (h).

Subsec. (h). Pub. L. 103-414, Sec. 303(a)(27), (28), redesignated

subsec. (g) as (h) and substituted "subsection (g)" for "subsection

(f)".

1988 - Subsecs. (c), (d). Pub. L. 100-626 added subsec. (c) and

redesignated former subsec. (c) as (d). Former subsec. (d)

redesignated (e).

Subsec. (d)(6). Pub. L. 100-667, Sec. 205(1), which directed the

addition of par. (6) to subsec. (c), was executed to subsec. (d) to

reflect the probable intent of Congress and the intervening

redesignation of subsec. (c) as (d) by Pub. L. 100-626.

Subsec. (e). Pub. L. 100-667, Sec. 205(2)-(12), which directed

the amendment of subsec. (d)(1) to (4) of this section, was

executed to subsec. (e)(1) to (4) of this section, see below, to

reflect the probable intent of Congress and the intervening

redesignation of subsec. (d) as (e) by Pub. L. 100-626.

Pub. L. 100-626 redesignated subsec. (d) as (e). Former subsec.

(e) redesignated (f).

Subsec. (e)(1). Pub. L. 100-667, Sec. 205(2), substituted

"$2,000" for "$1,000".

Subsec. (e)(2). Pub. L. 100-667, Sec. 205(3), substituted

"$50,000 or imprisoned for not more than 2 years, or both, for the

first such conviction and shall be fined not more than $100,000 or

imprisoned for not more than 5 years" for "$25,000 or imprisoned

for not more than 1 year, or both, for the first such conviction

and shall be fined not more than $50,000 or imprisoned for not more

than 2 years".

Subsec. (e)(3)(A). Pub. L. 100-667, Sec. 205(4), inserted "or

paragraph (4) of subsection (d) of this section" before "may

bring".

Subsec. (e)(3)(B). Pub. L. 100-667, Sec. 205(5)-(8), struck out

"may" after "The court" and substituted "may grant" for "grant" in

cl. (i), "may award" for "award" in cl. (ii), and "shall direct"

for "direct" in cl. (iii).

Subsec. (e)(3)(C)(i)(II). Pub. L. 100-667, Sec. 205(9), inserted

"of subsection (a) of this section" after "violation", substituted

"$1,000" for "$250", and inserted before period at end ", and for

each violation of paragraph (4) of this subsection involved in the

action an aggrieved party may recover statutory damages in a sum

not less than $10,000, or more than $100,000, as the court

considers just".

Subsec. (e)(3)(C)(ii). Pub. L. 100-667, Sec. 205(10), substituted

"$100,000 for each violation of subsection (a) of this section" for

"$50,000".

Subsec. (e)(3)(C)(iii). Pub. L. 100-667, Sec. 205(11),

substituted "$250" for "$100".

Subsec. (e)(4). Pub. L. 100-667, Sec. 205(12), added par. (4) and

struck out former par. (4) which read as follows: "The importation,

manufacture, sale, or distribution of equipment by any person with

the intent of its use to assist in any activity prohibited by

subsection (a) of this section shall be subject to penalties and

remedies under this subsection to the same extent and in the same

manner as a person who has engaged in such prohibited activity."

Subsec. (f). Pub. L. 100-667, Sec. 204, added subsec. (f)

relating to universal encryption standard.

Pub. L. 100-626 redesignated subsec. (e), relating to rights,

obligations, and liabilities under other laws, as (f).

Subsec. (g). Pub. L. 100-667, Sec. 204, added subsec. (g).

1984 - Pub. L. 98-549, Sec. 5(a), designated existing provisions

as subsec. (a) and added subsecs. (b) to (e).

1982 - Pub. L. 97-259 struck out "broadcast or" after

"communication which is", substituted "any station" for "amateurs

or others", struck out "or" after "general public,", and

substituted "ships, aircraft, vehicles, or persons in distress, or

which is transmitted by an amateur radio station operator or by a

citizens band radio operator" for "ships in distress".

1968 - Pub. L. 90-351 inserted "Except as authorized by chapter

119, title 18", designated existing provisions as cls. (1) to (6),

inserted "radio" before "communication" in second and fourth

sentences, struck out "wire or" before "radio" in third sentence,

and substituted "intercepted" for "obtained" in fourth sentence.

EFFECTIVE DATE OF 1988 AMENDMENT

Amendment by Pub. L. 100-667 effective Jan. 1, 1989, see section

206 of Pub. L. 100-667, set out as an Effective Date note under

section 119 of Title 17, Copyrights.

EFFECTIVE DATE OF 1984 AMENDMENT

Section 5(b) of Pub. L. 98-549 provided that: "The amendments

made by subsection (a) [amending this section] shall take effect on

the effective date of this Act [Dec. 29, 1984]."

Amendment by Pub. L. 98-549 effective 60 days after Oct. 30,

1984, except where otherwise expressly provided, see section 9(a)

of Pub. L. 98-549, set out as an Effective Date note under section

521 of this title.

-SECREF-

SECTION REFERRED TO IN OTHER SECTIONS

This section is referred to in sections 548, 612 of this title;

title 18 section 2511; title 50 section 1805.

-End-

-CITE-

47 USC Sec. 606 01/06/03

-EXPCITE-

TITLE 47 - TELEGRAPHS, TELEPHONES, AND RADIOTELEGRAPHS

CHAPTER 5 - WIRE OR RADIO COMMUNICATION

SUBCHAPTER VI - MISCELLANEOUS PROVISIONS

-HEAD-

Sec. 606. War powers of President

-STATUTE-

(a) Priority communications

During the continuance of a war in which the United States is

engaged, the President is authorized, if he finds it necessary for

the national defense and security, to direct that such

communications as in his judgment may be essential to the national

defense and security shall have preference or priority with any

carrier subject to this chapter. He may give these directions at

and for such times as he may determine, and may modify, change,

suspend, or annul them and for any such purpose he is authorized to

issue orders directly, or through such person or persons as he

designates for the purpose, or through the Commission. Any carrier

complying with any such order or direction for preference or

priority herein authorized shall be exempt from any and all

provisions in existing law imposing civil or criminal penalties,

obligations, or liabilities upon carriers by reason of giving

preference or priority in compliance with such order or direction.

(b) Obstruction of interstate or foreign communications

It shall be unlawful for any person during any war in which the

United States is engaged to knowingly or willfully, by physical

force or intimidation by threats of physical force, obstruct or

retard or aid in obstructing or retarding interstate or foreign

communication by radio or wire. The President is authorized,

whenever in his judgment the public interest requires, to employ

the armed forces of the United States to prevent any such

obstruction or retardation of communication: Provided, That nothing

in this section shall be construed to repeal, modify, or affect

either section 17 of title 15 or section 52 of title 29.

(c) Suspension or amendment of rules and regulations applicable to

certain emission stations or devices

Upon proclamation by the President that there exists war or a

threat of war, or a state of public peril or disaster or other

national emergency, or in order to preserve the neutrality of the

United States, the President, if he deems it necessary in the

interest of national security or defense, may suspend or amend, for

such time as he may see fit, the rules and regulations applicable

to any or all stations or devices capable of emitting

electromagnetic radiations within the jurisdiction of the United

States as prescribed by the Commission, and may cause the closing

of any station for radio communication, or any device capable of

emitting electromagnetic radiations between 10 kilocycles and

100,000 megacycles, which is suitable for use as a navigational aid

beyond five miles, and the removal therefrom of its apparatus and

equipment, or he may authorize the use or control of any such

station or device and/or its apparatus and equipment, by any

department of the Government under such regulations as he may

prescribe upon just compensation to the owners. The authority

granted to the President, under this subsection, to cause the

closing of any station or device and the removal therefrom of its

apparatus and equipment, or to authorize the use or control of any

station or device and/or its apparatus and equipment, may be

exercised in the Canal Zone.

(d) Suspension or amendment of rules and regulations applicable to

wire communications; closing of facilities; Government use of

facilities

Upon proclamation by the President that there exists a state or

threat of war involving the United States, the President, if he

deems it necessary in the interest of the national security and

defense, may, during a period ending not later than six months

after the termination of such state or threat of war and not later

than such earlier date as the Congress by concurrent resolution may

designate, (1) suspend or amend the rules and regulations

applicable to any or all facilities or stations for wire

communication within the jurisdiction of the United States as

prescribed by the Commission, (2) cause the closing of any facility

or station for wire communication and the removal therefrom of its

apparatus and equipment, or (3) authorize the use or control of any

such facility or station and its apparatus and equipment by any

department of the Government under such regulations as he may

prescribe, upon just compensation to the owners.

(e) Compensation

The President shall ascertain the just compensation for such use

or control and certify the amount ascertained to Congress for

appropriation and payment to the person entitled thereto. If the

amount so certified is unsatisfactory to the person entitled

thereto, such person shall be paid only 75 per centum of the amount

and shall be entitled to sue the United States to recover such

further sum as added to such payment of 75 per centum will make

such amount as will be just compensation for the use and control.

Such suit shall be brought in the manner provided by section 1346

or section 1491 of title 28.

(f) Affect on State laws and powers

Nothing in subsection (c) or (d) of this section shall be

construed to amend, repeal, impair, or affect existing laws or

powers of the States in relation to taxation or the lawful police

regulations of the several States, except wherein such laws,

powers, or regulations may affect the transmission of Government

communications, or the issue of stocks and bonds by any

communication system or systems.

(g) Limitations upon Presidential power

Nothing in subsection (c) or (d) of this section shall be

construed to authorize the President to make any amendment to the

rules and regulations of the Commission which the Commission would

not be authorized by law to make; and nothing in subsection (d) of

this section shall be construed to authorize the President to take

any action the force and effect of which shall continue beyond the

date after which taking of such action would not have been

authorized.

(h) Penalties

Any person who willfully does or causes or suffers to be done any

act prohibited pursuant to the exercise of the President's

authority under this section, or who willfully fails to do any act

which he is required to do pursuant to the exercise of the

President's authority under this section, or who willfully causes

or suffers such failure, shall, upon conviction thereof, be

punished for such offense by a fine of not more than $1,000 or by

imprisonment for not more than one year, or both, and, if a firm,

partnership, association, or corporation, by fine of not more than

$5,000, except that any person who commits such an offense with

intent to injure the United States, or with intent to secure an

advantage to any foreign nation, shall, upon conviction thereof, be

punished by a fine of not more than $20,000 or by imprisonment for

not more than 20 years, or both.

-SOURCE-

(June 19, 1934, ch. 652, title VII, Sec. 706, formerly title VI,

Sec. 606, 48 Stat. 1104; Jan. 26, 1942, ch. 18, Secs. 1, 2, 56

Stat. 18; Dec. 29, 1942, ch. 836, 56 Stat. 1096; July 25, 1947, ch.

327, Sec. 1, 61 Stat. 449; Oct. 24, 1951, ch. 553, Secs. 1, 2, 65

Stat. 611; renumbered title VII, Sec. 706, Pub. L. 98-549, Sec.

6(a), Oct. 30, 1984, 98 Stat. 2804.)

-REFTEXT-

REFERENCES IN TEXT

For definition of Canal Zone, referred to in subsec. (c), see

section 3602(b) of Title 22, Foreign Relations and Intercourse.

-COD-

CODIFICATION

In subsec. (e), "section 1346 or section 1491 of title 28"

substituted for "paragraph 20 of section 24 or by section 145, of

the Judicial Code, as amended" (which were classified to sections

41(20) and 250 of former Title 28, Judicial Code and Judiciary) on

authority of act June 25, 1948, ch. 646, 62 Stat. 869, the first

section of which enacted Title 28, Judiciary and Judicial

Procedure. Section 1346 of Title 28 sets forth the basic

jurisdiction of the district courts in cases in which the United

States is defendant. Section 1491 of Title 28 sets forth the basic

jurisdiction of the United States Court of Claims. Sections 24(20)

and 145 of the Judicial Code were also classified to sections 1496,

1501, 1503, 2401, 2402, and 2501 of Title 28.

-MISC1-

AMENDMENTS

1951 - Subsec. (c). Act Oct. 24, 1951, Sec. 1, clarified scope of

President's powers to use, control, and close radio facilities of

all kinds which might be useful to an enemy for navigational

purposes.

Subsec. (h). Act Oct. 24, 1951, Sec. 2, added subsec. (h).

1947 - Subsec. (h). Act July 25, 1947, struck out subsec. (h)

which related to modification of certain sections of this title

until six months after termination of World War II for the

protection of vessels in wartime.

1942 - Subsecs. (d), (e). Act Jan. 26, 1942, Sec. 1, added

subsec. (d) and redesignated former subsec. (d) as (e).

Subsecs. (f), (g). Act Jan. 26, 1942, Sec. 2, added subsecs. (f)

and (g).

Subsec. (h). Act Dec. 29, 1942, added subsec. (h).

TERMINATION OF WAR AND EMERGENCIES

Act July 25, 1947, ch. 327, Sec. 3, 61 Stat. 451, provided that

in the interpretation of this section, the date July 25, 1947,

shall be deemed to be the date of termination of any state of war

theretofore declared by Congress and of the national emergencies

proclaimed by the President on Sept. 8, 1939, and May 27, 1941.

-EXEC-

EXECUTIVE ORDER NO. 8964

Ex. Ord. No. 8964, eff. Dec. 10, 1941, 6 F.R. 6367, relating to

the use and control of radio stations and preference or priority of

communications was revoked by Ex. Ord. No. 9831, eff. Feb. 24,

1947, 12 F.R. 1363.

EX. ORD. NO. 9831. BOARD OF WAR COMMUNICATIONS ABOLISHED

Ex. Ord. No. 9831, eff. Feb. 24, 1947, 12 F.R. 1363, provided:

By virtue of the authority vested in me by the Constitution and

statutes, including the Communications Act of 1934 (48 Stat. 1104,

as amended; 47 U.S.C. 606) and as President of the United States,

and in the interest of the internal management of the Government,

it is hereby ordered as follows:

1. The Board of War Communications, established as the Defense

Communications Board by Executive Order No. 8546 of September 24,

1940, is abolished, and all property and records thereof are

transferred to the Federal Communications Commission.

2. Executive Orders Nos. 8546 of September 24, 1940, 8960 of

December 6, 1941, 8964 of December 10, 1941, 9089 of March 6, 1942,

and 9183 of June 15, 1942, are revoked.

Harry S Truman.

EXECUTIVE ORDER NO. 10312

Ex. Ord. No. 10312, eff. Dec. 10, 1951, 16 F.R. 12452, as amended

by Ex. Ord. No. 10438, eff. Mar. 13, 1953, 18 F.R. 1491; Ex. Ord.

No. 10773, eff. July 1, 1958, 23 F.R. 5061; Ex. Ord. No. 10782,

eff. Sept. 6, 1958, 23 F.R. 6971; Ex. Ord. No. 11051, eff. Sept.

27, 1962, 27 F.R. 9683, relating to delegation of authority to the

Federal Communications Commission was revoked by Ex. Ord. No.

11490, eff. Oct. 28, 1969, 34 F.R. 17567.

EXECUTIVE ORDER NO. 10705

Ex. Ord. No. 10705, Apr. 17, 1957, 22 F.R. 2729, as amended by

Ex. Ord. No. 10773, July 1, 1958, 23 F.R. 5061; Ex. Ord. No. 10782,

Sept. 6, 1958, 23 F.R. 6971; Ex. Ord. No. 11051, Sept. 27, 1962, 27

F.R. 9683; Ex. Ord. No. 11556, Sept. 4, 1970, 35 F.R. 14193, which

related to the delegation of authority to the Director of the

Office of Telecommunications Policy, was revoked by Ex. Ord. No.

12046, Mar. 27, 1978, 43 F.R. 13349, set out as a note under

section 305 of this title.

-SECREF-

SECTION REFERRED TO IN OTHER SECTIONS

This section is referred to in sections 309, 926 of this title;

title 18 section 2511.

-End-

-CITE-

47 USC Sec. 607 01/06/03

-EXPCITE-

TITLE 47 - TELEGRAPHS, TELEPHONES, AND RADIOTELEGRAPHS

CHAPTER 5 - WIRE OR RADIO COMMUNICATION

SUBCHAPTER VI - MISCELLANEOUS PROVISIONS

-HEAD-

Sec. 607. Effective date of chapter

-STATUTE-

This chapter shall take effect upon the organization of the

Commission, except that this section and sections 151 and 154 of

this title shall take effect July 1, 1934. The Commission shall be

deemed to be organized upon such date as four members of the

Commission have taken office.

-SOURCE-

(June 19, 1934, ch. 652, title VII, Sec. 707, formerly title VI,

Sec. 607, 48 Stat. 1105; renumbered title VII, Sec. 707, Pub. L.

98-549, Sec. 6(a), Oct. 30, 1984, 98 Stat. 2804.)

-REFTEXT-

REFERENCES IN TEXT

This chapter, referred to in text, was in the original "this

Act", meaning act June 19, 1934, ch. 652, 48 Stat. 1064, as

amended, known as the Communications Act of 1934, which is

classified principally to this chapter. For complete classification

of this Act to the Code, see section 609 of this title and Tables.

-End-

-CITE-

47 USC Sec. 608 01/06/03

-EXPCITE-

TITLE 47 - TELEGRAPHS, TELEPHONES, AND RADIOTELEGRAPHS

CHAPTER 5 - WIRE OR RADIO COMMUNICATION

SUBCHAPTER VI - MISCELLANEOUS PROVISIONS

-HEAD-

Sec. 608. Separability

-STATUTE-

If any provision of this chapter or the application thereof to

any person or circumstance is held invalid, the remainder of the

chapter and the application of such provision to other persons or

circumstances shall not be affected thereby.

-SOURCE-

(June 19, 1934, ch. 652, title VII, Sec. 708, formerly title VI,

Sec. 608, 48 Stat. 1105; renumbered title VII, Sec. 708, Pub. L.

98-549, Sec. 6(a), Oct. 30, 1984, 98 Stat. 2804.)

-End-

-CITE-

47 USC Sec. 609 01/06/03

-EXPCITE-

TITLE 47 - TELEGRAPHS, TELEPHONES, AND RADIOTELEGRAPHS

CHAPTER 5 - WIRE OR RADIO COMMUNICATION

SUBCHAPTER VI - MISCELLANEOUS PROVISIONS

-HEAD-

Sec. 609. Short title

-STATUTE-

This chapter may be cited as the "Communications Act of 1934."

-SOURCE-

(June 19, 1934, ch. 652, title VII, Sec. 709, formerly title VI,

Sec. 609, 48 Stat. 1105; renumbered title VII, Sec. 709, Pub. L.

98-549, Sec. 6(a), Oct. 30, 1984, 98 Stat. 2804.)

-REFTEXT-

REFERENCES IN TEXT

This chapter, referred to in text, was in the original "this

Act", meaning act June 19, 1934, ch. 652, 48 Stat. 1064, as

amended, known as the Communications Act of 1934, which enacted

this chapter, amended section 35 of this title, section 21 of Title

15, Commerce and Trade, section 487 of former Title 46, Shipping,

and sections 1, 2, 5, and 15 of former Title 49, Transportation,

and repealed sections 484 to 487 of former Title 46. For complete

classification of this Act to the Code, see Tables.

-MISC1-

SHORT TITLE OF 2002 AMENDMENT

Pub. L. 107-195, Sec. 1, June 19, 2002, 116 Stat. 715, provided

that: "This Act [amending section 309 of this title, enacting

provisions set out as notes under sections 309 and 337 of this

title, amending provisions set out as a note under section 337 of

this title, and repealing provisions set out as a note under

section 309 of this title] may be cited as the 'Auction Reform Act

of 2002'."

SHORT TITLE OF 2001 AMENDMENT

Pub. L. 107-75, Sec. 1, Nov. 28, 2001, 115 Stat. 703, provided

that: "This Act [amending provisions set out as a note under

section 151 of this title] may be cited as the 'Internet Tax

Nondiscrimination Act'."

SHORT TITLE OF 2000 AMENDMENT

Pub. L. 106-554, Sec. 1(a)(4) [div. B, title XVII, Sec. 1731],

Dec. 21, 2000, 114 Stat. 2763, 2763A-350, provided that: "This

subtitle [subtitle C (Secs. 1731-1733) of title XVII of div. B of

H.R. 5666, as enacted by section 1(a)(4) of Pub. L. 106-554,

amending section 254 of this title and enacting provisions set out

as a note under section 254 of this title] may be cited as the

'Neighborhood Children's Internet Protection Act'."

SHORT TITLE OF 1999 AMENDMENTS

Pub. L. 106-113, div. B, Sec. 1000(a)(9) [title V, Sec. 5008(a)],

Nov. 29, 1999, 113 Stat. 1536, 1501A-594, provided that: "This

section [amending section 336 of this title and enacting provisions

set out as a note under section 336 of this title] may be cited as

the 'Community Broadcasters Protection Act of 1999'."

Pub. L. 106-81, Sec. 1, Oct. 26, 1999, 113 Stat. 1286, provided

that: "This Act [enacting sections 615 to 615b of this title,

amending sections 222 and 251 of this title, and enacting

provisions set out as a note under section 615 of this title] may

be cited as the 'Wireless Communications and Public Safety Act of

1999'."

SHORT TITLE OF 1998 AMENDMENT

Pub. L. 105-277, div. C, title XIV, Sec. 1401, Oct. 21, 1998, 112

Stat. 2681-736, provided that: "This title [enacting section 231 of

this title, amending sections 223 and 230 of this title, and

enacting provisions set out as notes under sections 223 and 231 of

this title] may be cited as the 'Child Online Protection Act'."

SHORT TITLE OF 1996 AMENDMENT

Pub. L. 104-104, Sec. 1(a), Feb. 8, 1996, 110 Stat. 56, provided

that: "This Act [enacting sections 160, 161, 222, 230, 251 to 261,

271 to 276, 336, 363, 549, 560, 561, 571 to 573, 613, and 614 of

this title and section 79z-5c of Title 15, Commerce and Trade,

amending sections 151, 153 to 155, 204, 208, 214, 220, 221, 223 to

225, 228, 302a, 303, 305, 307 to 310, 312, 319, 330, 332, 360, 382,

385, 402, 522, 531 to 534, 537, 541 to 544a, 548, 552, 556, 557,

559, and 605 of this title, sections 18, 79, 79z-6, and 5714 of

Title 15, and sections 1462, 1465, and 2422 of Title 18, Crimes and

Criminal Procedure, and enacting provisions set out as notes under

this section and sections 151 to 153, 156, 157, 204, 214, 223, 228,

303, 308, 332, 534, 543, and 561 of this title and section 1462 of

Title 18] may be cited as the 'Telecommunications Act of 1996'."

Pub. L. 104-104, title V, Sec. 501, Feb. 8, 1996, 110 Stat. 133,

provided that: "This title [enacting sections 230, 560, and 561 of

this title, amending sections 223, 303, 330, 531, 532, and 559 of

this title and sections 1462, 1465, and 2422 of Title 18, Crimes

and Criminal Procedure, and enacting provisions set out as notes

under sections 223, 303, and 561 of this title and section 1462 of

Title 18] may be cited as the 'Communications Decency Act of

1996'."

SHORT TITLE OF 1992 AMENDMENTS

Pub. L. 102-385, Sec. 1, Oct. 5, 1992, 106 Stat. 1460, provided

that: "This Act [enacting sections 334, 335, 534 to 537, 544a, 548,

and 555a of this title, amending sections 325, 332, 522, 532, 533,

541 to 544, 546, 551 to 555, and 558 of this title, and enacting

provisions set out as notes under sections 325, 521, 531, 543, and

554 of this title] may be cited as the 'Cable Television Consumer

Protection and Competition Act of 1992'."

Pub. L. 102-356, Sec. 1, Aug. 26, 1992, 106 Stat. 949, provided

that: "This Act [amending sections 303b, 391, 393, and 396 of this

title, enacting provisions set out as notes under sections 303 and

396 of this title, and repealing provisions set out as a note under

section 303 of this title] may be cited as the 'Public

Telecommunications Act of 1992'."

SHORT TITLE OF 1991 AMENDMENT

Pub. L. 102-243, Sec. 1, Dec. 20, 1991, 105 Stat. 2394, provided

that: "This Act [enacting section 227 of this title, amending

sections 152 and 331 of this title, and enacting provisions set out

as notes under section 227 of this title] may be cited as the

'Telephone Consumer Protection Act of 1991'."

SHORT TITLE OF 1990 AMENDMENTS

Pub. L. 101-437, Sec. 1, Oct. 17, 1990, 104 Stat. 996, provided

that: "This Act [enacting sections 303a, 303b, and 394 of this

title, amending section 397 of this title, renumbering former

section 394 of this title as section 393a, and enacting provisions

set out as notes under this section and sections 303a and 394 of

this title] may be cited as the 'Children's Television Act of

1990'."

Pub. L. 101-437, title II, Sec. 201, Oct. 17, 1990, 104 Stat.

997, provided that: "This title [enacting section 394 of this

title, amending section 397 of this title, renumbering former

section 394 of this title as section 393a, and enacting provisions

set out as a note under section 394 of this title] may be cited as

the 'National Endowment for Children's Educational Television Act

of 1990'."

Pub. L. 101-435, Sec. 1, Oct. 17, 1990, 104 Stat. 986, provided

that: "This Act [enacting section 226 of this title and provisions

set out as a note under section 226 of this title] may be cited as

the 'Telephone Operator Consumer Services Improvement Act of

1990'."

Pub. L. 101-431, Sec. 1, Oct. 15, 1990, 104 Stat. 960, provided

that: "This Act [amending sections 303 and 330 of this title and

enacting provisions set out as notes under section 303 of this

title] may be cited as the 'Television Decoder Circuitry Act of

1990'."

Pub. L. 101-396, Sec. 1, Sept. 28, 1990, 104 Stat. 848, provided:

"That this Act [enacting section 333 of this title, amending

sections 154, 156, 203, 303, 310, and 503 of this title, and

amending provisions set out as a note under section 154 of this

title] may be cited as the 'Federal Communications Commission

Authorization Act of 1990'."

SHORT TITLE OF 1988 AMENDMENTS

Pub. L. 100-626, Sec. 1, Nov. 7, 1988, 102 Stat. 3207, provided

that: "This Act [amending sections 391, 396, 398, 399, and 605 of

this title and enacting provisions set out as notes under sections

391 and 396 of this title] may be cited as the 'Public

Telecommunications Act of 1988'."

Pub. L. 100-594, Sec. 1, Nov. 3, 1988, 102 Stat. 3021, provided

that: "This Act [amending sections 154 to 156, 158, 204, 208, and

405 of this title and enacting provisions set out as notes under

sections 154 and 156 of this title] may be cited as the 'Federal

Communications Commission Authorization Act of 1988'."

Pub. L. 100-394, Sec. 1, Aug. 16, 1988, 102 Stat. 976, provided:

"That this Act [amending section 610 of this title and enacting

provisions set out as a note under section 610 of this title] may

be cited as the 'Hearing Aid Compatibility Act of 1988'."

SHORT TITLE OF 1984 AMENDMENT

Pub. L. 98-549, Sec. 1(a), Oct. 30, 1984, 98 Stat. 2779, provided

that: "This Act [enacting subchapter V-A of this chapter and

section 611 of this title, amending sections 152, 224, 309, and 605

of this title, section 2511 of Title 18, Crimes and Criminal

Procedure, and section 1805 of Title 50, War and National Defense,

and enacting provisions set out as notes under sections 521, 543,

and 605 of this title] may be cited as the 'Cable Communications

Policy Act of 1984'."

SHORT TITLE OF 1983 AMENDMENTS

Pub. L. 98-214, Sec. 1, Dec. 8, 1983, 97 Stat. 1467, provided

that: "This Act [enacting section 157 of this title, amending

sections 154, 156, 223, 310, 316, 396, and 503 of this title, and

enacting provisions set out as notes under sections 156, 223, and

303 of this title] may be cited as the 'Federal Communications

Commission Authorization Act of 1983'."

Pub. L. 97-410, Sec. 1, Jan. 3, 1983, 96 Stat. 2043, provided:

"That this Act [enacting section 610 of this title, amending

section 734 of this title, enacting provisions set out as a note

under section 610 of this title, and amending provisions set out as

a note under section 396 of this title] may be cited as the

'Telecommunications for the Disabled Act of 1982'."

SHORT TITLE OF 1982 AMENDMENT

Pub. L. 97-259, title I, Sec. 101, Sept. 13, 1982, 96 Stat. 1087,

provided that: "This title [enacting sections 332 and 510 of this

title, amending sections 153, 154, 155, 224, 301, 302a, 303, 304,

307, 309, 311, 312, 319, 402, 405, 408, 503, and 605 of this title

and section 1114 of Title 18, Crimes and Criminal Procedure, and

enacting provisions set out as a note under section 302a of this

title] may be cited as the 'Communications Amendments Act of

1982'."

SHORT TITLE OF 1981 AMENDMENTS

Pub. L. 97-130, Sec. 1, Dec 29, 1981, 95 Stat. 1687, provided

that: "This Act [amending section 222 of this title and section

1017 of Title 45, Railroads, and enacting provisions set out as

notes under section 222 of this title and section 1017 of Title 45]

may be referred to as the 'Record Carrier Competition Act of

1981'."

Pub. L. 97-35, title XII, Sec. 1221, Aug. 13, 1981, 95 Stat. 725,

provided that: "This chapter [chapter 1 (Secs. 1221-1234) of

subtitle B of title XII of Pub. L. 97-35, enacting sections 399a

and 399b of this title, amending sections 391, 392, 396, 397, and

399 of this title, and enacting provisions set out as notes under

section 396 of this title] may be cited as the 'Public Broadcasting

Amendments Act of 1981'."

SHORT TITLE OF 1978 AMENDMENTS

Pub. L. 95-567, Sec. 1, Nov. 2, 1978, 92 Stat. 2405, provided:

"That this Act [enacting section 395 of this title, amending

sections 390 to 392, 393, 394, and 396 to 398 of this title,

repealing sections 392a and 395 of this title, and enacting

provisions set out as notes under sections 390, 392, and 396 of

this title and section 5316 of Title 5, Government Organization and

Employees] may be cited as the 'Public Telecommunications Financing

Act of 1978'."

Pub. L. 95-234, Sec. 1, Feb. 21, 1978, 92 Stat. 33, provided:

"That this Act [enacting section 224 of this title, amending

sections 152, 503, and 504 of this title, repealing section 510 of

this title, and enacting provisions set out as a note under section

152 of this title] may be cited as the 'Communications Act

Amendments of 1978'."

SHORT TITLE OF 1976 AMENDMENT

Pub. L. 94-309, Sec. 1, June 5, 1976, 90 Stat. 683, provided:

"That this Act [enacting section 392a of this title and amending

sections 390, 391, 392, 395, 397, and 399 of this title] may be

cited as the 'Educational Broadcasting Facilities and

Telecommunications Demonstration Act of 1976'."

SHORT TITLE OF 1975 AMENDMENT

Pub. L. 94-192, Sec. 1, Dec. 31, 1975, 89 Stat. 1099, provided:

"That this Act [amending sections 396 and 397 of this title] may be

cited as the 'Public Broadcasting Financing Act of 1975'."

SHORT TITLE OF 1971 AMENDMENT

Pub. L. 92-131, Sec. 1, Sept. 30, 1971, 85 Stat. 363, provided

that: "This Act [amending section 410 of this title] may be cited

as the 'Federal-State Communications Joint Board Act'."

SHORT TITLE OF 1970 AMENDMENT

Pub. L. 91-437, Sec. 1, Oct. 7, 1970, 84 Stat. 888, provided:

"That this Act [amending section 396 of this title] may be cited as

the 'Public Broadcasting Financing Act of 1970'."

SHORT TITLE OF 1969 AMENDMENT

Pub. L. 91-97, Sec. 1, Oct. 27, 1969, 83 Stat. 146, provided:

"That this Act [amending sections 391 and 396 of this title] may be

cited as the 'Educational Television and Radio Amendments of

1969'."

SHORT TITLE OF 1967 AMENDMENT

Pub. L. 90-129, Sec. 1, Nov. 7, 1967, 81 Stat. 365, provided:

"That this Act [enacting sections 396, 398, and 399 of this title,

amending sections 390 to 395 and 397 of this title, and enacting

provisions set out as notes under sections 390 and 392 of this

title] may be cited as the 'Public Broadcasting Act of 1967'."

SHORT TITLE OF 1960 AMENDMENT

Pub. L. 86-752, Sec. 1, Sept. 13, 1960, 74 Stat. 889, provided

that: "This Act [enacting sections 508 and 509 of this title,

amending sections 154, 307, 309, 311, 312, 313, 317, 319, 405, 503,

and 504 of this title, and enacting provisions set out as notes

under sections 309 and 405 of this title] may be cited as the

'Communications Act Amendments, 1960'."

SHORT TITLE OF 1952 AMENDMENT

Act July 16, 1952, ch. 879, Sec. 1, 66 Stat. 711, provided that:

"This Act [enacting section 1343 of Title 18, Crimes and Criminal

Procedure, amending sections 153 to 155, 307 to 312, 315, 316, 319,

402, 405, 409, and 410 of this title, and enacting provisions set

out as notes under section 153 of this title] may be cited as the

'Communications Act Amendments, 1952'."

-End-

-CITE-

47 USC Sec. 610 01/06/03

-EXPCITE-

TITLE 47 - TELEGRAPHS, TELEPHONES, AND RADIOTELEGRAPHS

CHAPTER 5 - WIRE OR RADIO COMMUNICATION

SUBCHAPTER VI - MISCELLANEOUS PROVISIONS

-HEAD-

Sec. 610. Telephone service for disabled

-STATUTE-

(a) Establishment of regulations

The Commission shall establish such regulations as are necessary

to ensure reasonable access to telephone service by persons with

impaired hearing.

(b) Hearing aid compatibility requirements

(1) Except as provided in paragraphs (2) and (3), the Commission

shall require that -

(A) all essential telephones, and

(B) all telephones manufactured in the United States (other

than for export) more than one year after August 16, 1988, or

imported for use in the United States more than one year after

August 16, 1988,

provide internal means for effective use with hearing aids that are

designed to be compatible with telephones which meet established

technical standards for hearing aid compatibility.

(2)(A) The initial regulations prescribed by the Commission under

paragraph (1) of this subsection after August 16, 1988, shall

exempt from the requirements established pursuant to paragraph

(1)(B) of this subsection only -

(i) telephones used with public mobile services;

(ii) telephones used with private radio services;

(iii) cordless telephones; and

(iv) secure telephones.

(B) The exemption provided by such regulations for cordless

telephones shall not apply with respect to cordless telephones

manufactured or imported more than three years after August 16,

1988.

(C) The Commission shall periodically assess the appropriateness

of continuing in effect the exemptions provided by such regulations

for telephones used with public mobile services and telephones used

with private radio services. The Commission shall revoke or

otherwise limit any such exemption if the Commission determines

that -

(i) such revocation or limitation is in the public interest;

(ii) continuation of the exemption without such revocation or

limitation would have an adverse effect on hearing-impaired

individuals;

(iii) compliance with the requirements of paragraph (1)(B) is

technologically feasible for the telephones to which the

exemption applies; and

(iv) compliance with the requirements of paragraph (1)(B) would

not increase costs to such an extent that the telephones to which

the exemption applies could not be successfully marketed.

(3) The Commission may, upon the application of any interested

person, initiate a proceeding to waive the requirements of

paragraph (1)(B) of this subsection with respect to new telephones,

or telephones associated with a new technology or service. The

Commission shall not grant such a waiver unless the Commission

determines, on the basis of evidence in the record of such

proceeding, that such telephones, or such technology or service,

are in the public interest, and that (A) compliance with the

requirements of paragraph (1)(B) is technologically infeasible, or

(B) compliance with such requirements would increase the costs of

the telephones, or of the technology or service, to such an extent

that such telephones, technology, or service could not be

successfully marketed. In any proceeding under this paragraph to

grant a waiver from the requirements of paragraph (1)(B), the

Commission shall consider the effect on hearing-impaired

individuals of granting the waiver. The Commission shall

periodically review and determine the continuing need for any

waiver granted pursuant to this paragraph.

(4) For purposes of this subsection -

(A) the term "essential telephones" means only coin-operated

telephones, telephones provided for emergency use, and other

telephones frequently needed for use by persons using such

hearing aids;

(B) the term "public mobile services" means air-to-ground

radiotelephone services, cellular radio telecommunications

services, offshore radio, rural radio service, public land mobile

telephone service, and other common carrier radio communication

services covered by part 22 of title 47 of the Code of Federal

Regulations;

(C) the term "private radio services" means private land mobile

radio services and other communications services characterized by

the Commission in its rules as private radio services; and

(D) the term "secure telephones" means telephones that are

approved by the United States Government for the transmission of

classified or sensitive voice communications.

(c) Technical standards

The Commission shall establish or approve such technical

standards as are required to enforce this section.

(d) Labeling of packaging materials for equipment

The Commission shall establish such requirements for the labeling

of packaging materials for equipment as are needed to provide

adequate information to consumers on the compatibility between

telephones and hearing aids.

(e) Costs and benefits; encouragement of use of currently available

technology

In any rulemaking to implement the provisions of this section,

the Commission shall specifically consider the costs and benefits

to all telephone users, including persons with and without hearing

impairments. The Commission shall ensure that regulations adopted

to implement this section encourage the use of currently available

technology and do not discourage or impair the development of

improved technology.

(f) Periodic review of regulations; retrofitting

The Commission shall periodically review the regulations

established pursuant to this section. Except for coin-operated

telephones and telephones provided for emergency use, the

Commission may not require the retrofitting of equipment to achieve

the purposes of this section.

(g) Recovery of reasonable and prudent costs

Any common carrier or connecting carrier may provide specialized

terminal equipment needed by persons whose hearing, speech, vision,

or mobility is impaired. The State commission may allow the carrier

to recover in its tariffs for regulated service reasonable and

prudent costs not charged directly to users of such equipment.

(h) State enforcement

The Commission shall delegate to each State commission the

authority to enforce within such State compliance with the specific

regulations that the Commission issues under subsections (a) and

(b) of this section, conditioned upon the adoption and enforcement

of such regulations by the State commission.

-SOURCE-

(June 19, 1934, ch. 652, title VII, Sec. 710, formerly title VI,

Sec. 610, as added Pub. L. 97-410, Sec. 3, Jan. 3, 1983, 96 Stat.

2043; renumbered title VII, Sec. 710, Pub. L. 98-549, Sec. 6(a),

Oct. 30, 1984, 98 Stat. 2804; amended Pub. L. 100-394, Sec. 3, Aug.

16, 1988, 102 Stat. 976; Pub. L. 103-414, title III, Sec.

304(a)(16), Oct. 25, 1994, 108 Stat. 4297.)

-MISC1-

AMENDMENTS

1994 - Subsec. (f). Pub. L. 103-414 substituted "The Commission"

for "The Commission shall complete rulemaking actions required by

this section and issue specific and detailed rules and regulations

resulting therefrom within one year after January 3, 1983. The

Commission shall complete rulemaking actions required to implement

the amendments made by the Hearing Aid Compatibility Act of 1988

within nine months after August 16, 1988. Thereafter, the

Commission".

1988 - Subsec. (b). Pub. L. 100-394, Sec. 3(a), amended subsec.

(b) generally. Prior to amendment, subsec. (b) read as follows:

"The Commission shall require that essential telephones provide

internal means for effective use with hearing aids that are

specially designed for telephone use. For purposes of this

subsection, the term 'essential telephones' means only

coin-operated telephones, telephones provided for emergency use,

and other telephones frequently needed for use by persons using

such hearing aids."

Subsec. (f). Pub. L. 100-394, Sec. 3(b), substituted "The

Commission shall complete rulemaking actions required to implement

the amendments made by the Hearing Aid Compatibility Act of 1988

within nine months after August 16, 1988. Thereafter, the

Commission shall periodically review the regulations established

pursuant to this section." for "Thereafter the Commission shall

periodically review such rules and regulations."

CONGRESSIONAL FINDINGS FOR 1988 AMENDMENT

Section 2 of Pub. L. 100-394 provided that: "The Congress finds

that -

"(1) to the fullest extent made possible by technology and

medical science, hearing-impaired persons should have equal

access to the national telecommunications network;

"(2) present technology provides effective coupling of

telephones to hearing aids used by some severely hearing-impaired

persons for communicating by voice telephone;

"(3) anticipated improvements in both telephone and hearing aid

technologies promise greater access in the future; and

"(4) universal telephone service for hearing-impaired persons

will lead to greater employment opportunities and increased

productivity."

CONGRESSIONAL FINDINGS

Section 2 of Pub. L. 97-410 provided that: "The Congress finds

that -

"(1) all persons should have available the best telephone

service which is technologically and economically feasible;

"(2) currently available technology is capable of providing

telephone service to some individuals who, because of hearing

impairments, require telephone reception by means of hearing aids

with induction coils, or other inductive receptors;

"(3) the lack of technical standards ensuring compatibility

between hearing aids and telephones has prevented receipt of the

best telephone service which is technologically and economically

feasible; and

"(4) adoption of technical standards is required in order to

ensure compatibility between telephones and hearing aids, thereby

accommodating the needs of individuals with hearing impairments."

-End-

-CITE-

47 USC Sec. 611 01/06/03

-EXPCITE-

TITLE 47 - TELEGRAPHS, TELEPHONES, AND RADIOTELEGRAPHS

CHAPTER 5 - WIRE OR RADIO COMMUNICATION

SUBCHAPTER VI - MISCELLANEOUS PROVISIONS

-HEAD-

Sec. 611. Closed-captioning of public service announcements

-STATUTE-

Any television public service announcement that is produced or

funded in whole or in part by any agency or instrumentality of

Federal Government shall include closed captioning of the verbal

content of such announcement. A television broadcast station

licensee -

(1) shall not be required to supply closed captioning for any

such announcement that fails to include it; and

(2) shall not be liable for broadcasting any such announcement

without transmitting a closed caption unless the licensee

intentionally fails to transmit the closed caption that was

included with the announcement.

-SOURCE-

(June 19, 1934, ch. 652, title VII, Sec. 711, as added Pub. L.

98-549, Sec. 8, Oct. 30, 1984, 98 Stat. 2804; amended Pub. L.

101-336, title IV, Sec. 402, July 26, 1990, 104 Stat. 369.)

-MISC1-

AMENDMENTS

1990 - Pub. L. 101-336 amended section generally, substituting

provisions relating to closed-captioning of public service

announcements for provisions relating to establishment, functions,

composition, etc., of Telecommunications Policy Study Commission.

EFFECTIVE DATE

Section effective 60 days after Oct. 30, 1984, except where

otherwise expressly provided, see section 9(a) of Pub. L. 98-549,

set out as a note under section 521 of this title.

-End-

-CITE-

47 USC Sec. 612 01/06/03

-EXPCITE-

TITLE 47 - TELEGRAPHS, TELEPHONES, AND RADIOTELEGRAPHS

CHAPTER 5 - WIRE OR RADIO COMMUNICATION

SUBCHAPTER VI - MISCELLANEOUS PROVISIONS

-HEAD-

Sec. 612. Syndicated exclusivity

-STATUTE-

(a) The Federal Communications Commission shall initiate a

combined inquiry and rulemaking proceeding for the purpose of -

(1) determining the feasibility of imposing syndicated

exclusivity rules with respect to the delivery of syndicated

programming (as defined by the Commission) for private home

viewing of secondary transmissions by satellite of broadcast

station signals similar to the rules issued by the Commission

with respect to syndicated exclusivity and cable television; and

(2) adopting such rules if the Commission considers the

imposition of such rules to be feasible.

(b) In the event that the Commission adopts such rules, any

willful and repeated secondary transmission made by a satellite

carrier to the public of a primary transmission embodying the

performance or display of a work which violates such Commission

rules shall be subject to the remedies, sanctions, and penalties

provided by subchapter V of this chapter and section 605 of this

title.

-SOURCE-

(June 19, 1934, ch. 652, title VII, Sec. 712, as added Pub. L.

100-667, title II, Sec. 203, Nov. 16, 1988, 102 Stat. 3958; amended

Pub. L. 103-414, title III, Sec. 304(a)(17), Oct. 25, 1994, 108

Stat. 4297.)

-MISC1-

AMENDMENTS

1994 - Subsec. (a). Pub. L. 103-414 struck out ", within 120 days

after January 1, 1989," after "The Federal Communications

Commission shall".

EFFECTIVE DATE

Section effective Jan. 1, 1989, see section 206 of Pub. L.

100-667, set out as a note under section 119 of Title 17,

Copyrights.

-End-

-CITE-

47 USC Sec. 613 01/06/03

-EXPCITE-

TITLE 47 - TELEGRAPHS, TELEPHONES, AND RADIOTELEGRAPHS

CHAPTER 5 - WIRE OR RADIO COMMUNICATION

SUBCHAPTER VI - MISCELLANEOUS PROVISIONS

-HEAD-

Sec. 613. Video programming accessibility

-STATUTE-

(a) Commission inquiry

Within 180 days after February 8, 1996, the Federal

Communications Commission shall complete an inquiry to ascertain

the level at which video programming is closed captioned. Such

inquiry shall examine the extent to which existing or previously

published programming is closed captioned, the size of the video

programming provider or programming owner providing closed

captioning, the size of the market served, the relative audience

shares achieved, or any other related factors. The Commission shall

submit to the Congress a report on the results of such inquiry.

(b) Accountability criteria

Within 18 months after February 8, 1996, the Commission shall

prescribe such regulations as are necessary to implement this

section. Such regulations shall ensure that -

(1) video programming first published or exhibited after the

effective date of such regulations is fully accessible through

the provision of closed captions, except as provided in

subsection (d) of this section; and

(2) video programming providers or owners maximize the

accessibility of video programming first published or exhibited

prior to the effective date of such regulations through the

provision of closed captions, except as provided in subsection

(d) of this section.

(c) Deadlines for captioning

Such regulations shall include an appropriate schedule of

deadlines for the provision of closed captioning of video

programming.

(d) Exemptions

Notwithstanding subsection (b) of this section -

(1) the Commission may exempt by regulation programs, classes

of programs, or services for which the Commission has determined

that the provision of closed captioning would be economically

burdensome to the provider or owner of such programming;

(2) a provider of video programming or the owner of any program

carried by the provider shall not be obligated to supply closed

captions if such action would be inconsistent with contracts in

effect on February 8, 1996, except that nothing in this section

shall be construed to relieve a video programming provider of its

obligations to provide services required by Federal law; and

(3) a provider of video programming or program owner may

petition the Commission for an exemption from the requirements of

this section, and the Commission may grant such petition upon a

showing that the requirements contained in this section would

result in an undue burden.

(e) Undue burden

The term "undue burden" means significant difficulty or expense.

In determining whether the closed captions necessary to comply with

the requirements of this paragraph would result in an undue

economic burden, the factors to be considered include -

(1) the nature and cost of the closed captions for the

programming;

(2) the impact on the operation of the provider or program

owner;

(3) the financial resources of the provider or program owner;

and

(4) the type of operations of the provider or program owner.

(f) Video descriptions inquiry

Within 6 months after February 8, 1996, the Commission shall

commence an inquiry to examine the use of video descriptions on

video programming in order to ensure the accessibility of video

programming to persons with visual impairments, and report to

Congress on its findings. The Commission's report shall assess

appropriate methods and schedules for phasing video descriptions

into the marketplace, technical and quality standards for video

descriptions, a definition of programming for which video

descriptions would apply, and other technical and legal issues that

the Commission deems appropriate.

(g) Video description

For purposes of this section, "video description" means the

insertion of audio narrated descriptions of a television program's

key visual elements into natural pauses between the program's

dialogue.

(h) Private rights of actions prohibited

Nothing in this section shall be construed to authorize any

private right of action to enforce any requirement of this section

or any regulation thereunder. The Commission shall have exclusive

jurisdiction with respect to any complaint under this section.

-SOURCE-

(June 19, 1934, ch. 652, title VII, Sec. 713, as added Pub. L.

104-104, title III, Sec. 305, Feb. 8, 1996, 110 Stat. 126.)

-MISC1-

PRIOR PROVISIONS

A prior section 613, act June 19, 1934, ch. 652, title VII, Sec.

713, as added Nov. 16, 1988, Pub. L. 100-667, title II, Sec. 203,

102 Stat. 3958, related to report to Congress on discrimination,

prior to repeal by Pub. L. 103-414, title III, Sec. 304(a)(18),

Oct. 25, 1994, 108 Stat. 4297.

-End-

-CITE-

47 USC Sec. 614 01/06/03

-EXPCITE-

TITLE 47 - TELEGRAPHS, TELEPHONES, AND RADIOTELEGRAPHS

CHAPTER 5 - WIRE OR RADIO COMMUNICATION

SUBCHAPTER VI - MISCELLANEOUS PROVISIONS

-HEAD-

Sec. 614. Telecommunications Development Fund

-STATUTE-

(a) Purpose of section

It is the purpose of this section -

(1) to promote access to capital for small businesses in order

to enhance competition in the telecommunications industry;

(2) to stimulate new technology development, and promote

employment and training; and

(3) to support universal service and promote delivery of

telecommunications services to underserved rural and urban areas.

(b) Establishment of Fund

There is hereby established a body corporate to be known as the

Telecommunications Development Fund, which shall have succession

until dissolved. The Fund shall maintain its principal office in

the District of Columbia and shall be deemed, for purposes of venue

and jurisdiction in civil actions, to be a resident and citizen

thereof.

(c) Board of Directors

(1) Composition of Board; Chairman

The Fund shall have a Board of Directors which shall consist of

7 persons appointed by the Chairman of the Commission. Four of

such directors shall be representative of the private sector and

three of such directors shall be representative of the

Commission, the Small Business Administration, and the Department

of the Treasury, respectively. The Chairman of the Commission

shall appoint one of the representatives of the private sector to

serve as chairman of the Fund within 30 days after February 8,

1996, in order to facilitate rapid creation and implementation of

the Fund. The directors shall include members with experience in

a number of the following areas: finance, investment banking,

government banking, communications law and administrative

practice, and public policy.

(2) Terms of appointed and elected members

The directors shall be eligible to serve for terms of 5 years,

except of the initial members, as designated at the time of their

appointment -

(A) 1 shall be eligible to service for a term of 1 year;

(B) 1 shall be eligible to service for a term of 2 years;

(C) 1 shall be eligible to service for a term of 3 years;

(D) 2 shall be eligible to service for a term of 4 years; and

(E) 2 shall be eligible to service for a term of 5 years (1

of whom shall be the Chairman).

Directors may continue to serve until their successors have been

appointed and have qualified.

(3) Meetings and functions of the Board

The Board of Directors shall meet at the call of its Chairman,

but at least quarterly. The Board shall determine the general

policies which shall govern the operations of the Fund. The

Chairman of the Board shall, with the approval of the Board,

select, appoint, and compensate qualified persons to fill the

offices as may be provided for in the bylaws, with such

functions, powers, and duties as may be prescribed by the bylaws

or by the Board of Directors, and such persons shall be the

officers of the Fund and shall discharge all such functions,

powers, and duties.

(d) Accounts of Fund

The Fund shall maintain its accounts at a financial institution

designated for purposes of this section by the Chairman of the

Board (after consultation with the Commission and the Secretary of

the Treasury). The accounts of the Fund shall consist of -

(1) interest transferred pursuant to section 309(j)(8)(C) of

this title;

(2) such sums as may be appropriated to the Commission for

advances to the Fund;

(3) any contributions or donations to the Fund that are

accepted by the Fund; and

(4) any repayment of, or other payment made with respect to,

loans, equity, or other extensions of credit made from the Fund.

(e) Use of Fund

All moneys deposited into the accounts of the Fund shall be used

solely for -

(1) the making of loans, investments, or other extensions of

credits to eligible small businesses in accordance with

subsection (f) of this section;

(2) the provision of financial advice to eligible small

businesses;

(3) expenses for the administration and management of the Fund

(including salaries, expenses, and the rental or purchase of

office space for the fund); (!1)

(4) preparation of research, studies, or financial analyses;

and

(5) other services consistent with the purposes of this

section.

(f) Lending and credit operations

Loans or other extensions of credit from the Fund shall be made

available in accordance with the requirements of the Federal Credit

Reform Act of 1990 (2 U.S.C. 661 et seq.) and any other applicable

law to an eligible small business on the basis of -

(1) the analysis of the business plan of the eligible small

business;

(2) the reasonable availability of collateral to secure the

loan or credit extension;

(3) the extent to which the loan or credit extension promotes

the purposes of this section; and

(4) other lending policies as defined by the Board.

(g) Return of advances

Any advances appropriated pursuant to subsection (d)(2) of this

section shall be disbursed upon such terms and conditions

(including conditions relating to the time or times of repayment)

as are specified in any appropriations Act providing such advances.

(h) General corporate powers

The Fund shall have power -

(1) to sue and be sued, complain and defend, in its corporate

name and through its own counsel;

(2) to adopt, alter, and use the corporate seal, which shall be

judicially noticed;

(3) to adopt, amend, and repeal by its Board of Directors,

bylaws, rules, and regulations as may be necessary for the

conduct of its business;

(4) to conduct its business, carry on its operations, and have

officers and exercise the power granted by this section in any

State without regard to any qualification or similar statute in

any State;

(5) to lease, purchase, or otherwise acquire, own, hold,

improve, use, or otherwise deal in and with any property, real,

personal, or mixed, or any interest therein, wherever situated,

for the purposes of the Fund;

(6) to accept gifts or donations of services, or of property,

real, personal, or mixed, tangible or intangible, in aid of any

of the purposes of the Fund;

(7) to sell, convey, mortgage, pledge, lease, exchange, and

otherwise dispose of its property and assets;

(8) to appoint such officers, attorneys, employees, and agents

as may be required, to determine their qualifications, to define

their duties, to fix their salaries, require bonds for them, and

fix the penalty thereof; and

(9) to enter into contracts, to execute instruments, to incur

liabilities, to make loans and equity investment, and to do all

things as are necessary or incidental to the proper management of

its affairs and the proper conduct of its business.

(i) Accounting, auditing, and reporting

The accounts of the Fund shall be audited annually. Such audits

shall be conducted in accordance with generally accepted auditing

standards by independent certified public accountants. A report of

each such audit shall be furnished to the Secretary of the Treasury

and the Commission. The representatives of the Secretary and the

Commission shall have access to all books, accounts, financial

records, reports, files, and all other papers, things, or property

belonging to or in use by the Fund and necessary to facilitate the

audit.

(j) Report on audits by Treasury

A report of each such audit for a fiscal year shall be made by

the Secretary of the Treasury to the President and to the Congress

not later than 6 months following the close of such fiscal year.

The report shall set forth the scope of the audit and shall include

a statement of assets and liabilities, capital and surplus or

deficit; a statement of surplus or deficit analysis; a statement of

income and expense; a statement of sources and application of

funds; and such comments and information as may be deemed necessary

to keep the President and the Congress informed of the operations

and financial condition of the Fund, together with such

recommendations with respect thereto as the Secretary may deem

advisable.

(k) Definitions

As used in this section:

(1) Eligible small business

The term "eligible small business" means business enterprises

engaged in the telecommunications industry that have $50,000,000

or less in annual revenues, on average over the past 3 years

prior to submitting the application under this section.

(2) Fund

The term "Fund" means the Telecommunications Development Fund

established pursuant to this section.

(3) Telecommunications industry

The term "telecommunications industry" means communications

businesses using regulated or unregulated facilities or services

and includes broadcasting, telecommunications, cable, computer,

data transmission, software, programming, advanced messaging, and

electronics businesses.

-SOURCE-

(June 19, 1934, ch. 652, title VII, Sec. 714, as added Pub. L.

104-104, title VII, Sec. 707(b), Feb. 8, 1996, 110 Stat. 154.)

-REFTEXT-

REFERENCES IN TEXT

The Federal Credit Reform Act of 1990, referred to in subsec.

(f), is title V of Pub. L. 93-344 as added by Pub. L. 101-508,

title XIII, Sec. 13201(a), Nov. 5, 1990, 104 Stat. 1388-609, which

is classified generally to subchapter III (Sec. 661 et seq.) of

chapter 17A of Title 2, The Congress. For complete classification

of this Act to the Code, see Short Title note set out under section

621 of Title 2 and Tables.

-SECREF-

SECTION REFERRED TO IN OTHER SECTIONS

This section is referred to in section 309 of this title.

-FOOTNOTE-

(!1) So in original. Probably should be "Fund);".

-End-

-CITE-

47 USC Sec. 615 01/06/03

-EXPCITE-

TITLE 47 - TELEGRAPHS, TELEPHONES, AND RADIOTELEGRAPHS

CHAPTER 5 - WIRE OR RADIO COMMUNICATION

SUBCHAPTER VI - MISCELLANEOUS PROVISIONS

-HEAD-

Sec. 615. Support for universal emergency telephone number

-STATUTE-

The Federal Communications Commission shall encourage and support

efforts by States to deploy comprehensive end-to-end emergency

communications infrastructure and programs, based on coordinated

statewide plans, including seamless, ubiquitous, reliable wireless

telecommunications networks and enhanced wireless 9-1-1 service. In

encouraging and supporting that deployment, the Commission shall

consult and cooperate with State and local officials responsible

for emergency services and public safety, the telecommunications

industry (specifically including the cellular and other wireless

telecommunications service providers), the motor vehicle

manufacturing industry, emergency medical service providers and

emergency dispatch providers, transportation officials, special

9-1-1 districts, public safety, fire service and law enforcement

officials, consumer groups, and hospital emergency and trauma care

personnel (including emergency physicians, trauma surgeons, and

nurses). The Commission shall encourage each State to develop and

implement coordinated statewide deployment plans, through an entity

designated by the governor, and to include representatives of the

foregoing organizations and entities in development and

implementation of such plans. Nothing in this section shall be

construed to authorize or require the Commission to impose

obligations or costs on any person.

-SOURCE-

(Pub. L. 106-81, Sec. 3(b), Oct. 26, 1999, 113 Stat. 1287.)

-COD-

CODIFICATION

Section was enacted as part of the Wireless Communications and

Public Safety Act of 1999, and not as part of the Communications

Act of 1934 which comprises this chapter.

-MISC1-

FINDINGS AND PURPOSE

Pub. L. 106-81, Sec. 2, Oct. 26, 1999, 113 Stat. 1286, provided

that:

"(a) Findings. - The Congress finds that -

"(1) the establishment and maintenance of an end-to-end

communications infrastructure among members of the public,

emergency safety, fire service and law enforcement officials,

emergency dispatch providers, transportation officials, and

hospital emergency and trauma care facilities will reduce

response times for the delivery of emergency care, assist in

delivering appropriate care, and thereby prevent fatalities,

substantially reduce the severity and extent of injuries, reduce

time lost from work, and save thousands of lives and billions of

dollars in health care costs;

"(2) the rapid, efficient deployment of emergency

telecommunications service requires statewide coordination of the

efforts of local public safety, fire service and law enforcement

officials, emergency dispatch providers, and transportation

officials; the establishment of sources of adequate funding for

carrier and public safety, fire service and law enforcement

agency technology development and deployment; the coordination

and integration of emergency communications with traffic control

and management systems and the designation of 9-1-1 as the number

to call in emergencies throughout the Nation;

"(3) emerging technologies can be a critical component of the

end-to-end communications infrastructure connecting the public

with emergency medical service providers and emergency dispatch

providers, public safety, fire service and law enforcement

officials, and hospital emergency and trauma care facilities, to

reduce emergency response times and provide appropriate care;

"(4) improved public safety remains an important public health

objective of Federal, State, and local governments and

substantially facilitates interstate and foreign commerce;

"(5) emergency care systems, particularly in rural areas of the

Nation, will improve with the enabling of prompt notification of

emergency services when motor vehicle crashes occur; and

"(6) the construction and operation of seamless, ubiquitous,

and reliable wireless telecommunications systems promote public

safety and provide immediate and critical communications links

among members of the public; emergency medical service providers

and emergency dispatch providers; public safety, fire service and

law enforcement officials; transportation officials, and hospital

emergency and trauma care facilities.

"(b) Purpose. - The purpose of this Act [see Short Title of 1999

Amendments note set out under section 609 of this title] is to

encourage and facilitate the prompt deployment throughout the

United States of a seamless, ubiquitous, and reliable end-to-end

infrastructure for communications, including wireless

communications, to meet the Nation's public safety and other

communications needs."

-End-

-CITE-

47 USC Sec. 615a 01/06/03

-EXPCITE-

TITLE 47 - TELEGRAPHS, TELEPHONES, AND RADIOTELEGRAPHS

CHAPTER 5 - WIRE OR RADIO COMMUNICATION

SUBCHAPTER VI - MISCELLANEOUS PROVISIONS

-HEAD-

Sec. 615a. Parity of protection for provision or use of wireless

service

-STATUTE-

(a) Provider parity

A wireless carrier, and its officers, directors, employees,

vendors, and agents, shall have immunity or other protection from

liability in a State of a scope and extent that is not less than

the scope and extent of immunity or other protection from liability

that any local exchange company, and its officers, directors,

employees, vendors, or agents, have under Federal and State law

(whether through statute, judicial decision, tariffs filed by such

local exchange company, or otherwise) applicable in such State,

including in connection with an act or omission involving the

release to a PSAP, emergency medical service provider or emergency

dispatch provider, public safety, fire service or law enforcement

official, or hospital emergency or trauma care facility of

subscriber information related to emergency calls or emergency

services.

(b) User parity

A person using wireless 9-1-1 service shall have immunity or

other protection from liability of a scope and extent that is not

less than the scope and extent of immunity or other protection from

liability under applicable law in similar circumstances of a person

using 9-1-1 service that is not wireless.

(c) PSAP parity

In matters related to wireless 9-1-1 communications, a PSAP, and

its employees, vendors, agents, and authorizing government entity

(if any) shall have immunity or other protection from liability of

a scope and extent that is not less than the scope and extent of

immunity or other protection from liability under applicable law

accorded to such PSAP, employees, vendors, agents, and authorizing

government entity, respectively, in matters related to 9-1-1

communications that are not wireless.

(d) Basis for enactment

This section is enacted as an exercise of the enforcement power

of the Congress under section 5 of the Fourteenth Amendment to the

Constitution and the power of the Congress to regulate commerce

with foreign nations, among the several States, and with Indian

tribes.

-SOURCE-

(Pub. L. 106-81, Sec. 4, Oct. 26, 1999, 113 Stat. 1288.)

-COD-

CODIFICATION

Section was enacted as part of the Wireless Communications and

Public Safety Act of 1999, and not as part of the Communications

Act of 1934 which comprises this chapter.

-End-

-CITE-

47 USC Sec. 615b 01/06/03

-EXPCITE-

TITLE 47 - TELEGRAPHS, TELEPHONES, AND RADIOTELEGRAPHS

CHAPTER 5 - WIRE OR RADIO COMMUNICATION

SUBCHAPTER VI - MISCELLANEOUS PROVISIONS

-HEAD-

Sec. 615b. Definitions

-STATUTE-

As used in this Act:

(1) Secretary

The term "Secretary" means the Secretary of Transportation.

(2) State

The term "State" means any of the several States, the District

of Columbia, or any territory or possession of the United States.

(3) Public safety answering point; PSAP

The term "public safety answering point" or "PSAP" means a

facility that has been designated to receive 9-1-1 calls and

route them to emergency service personnel.

(4) Wireless carrier

The term "wireless carrier" means a provider of commercial

mobile services or any other radio communications service that

the Federal Communications Commission requires to provide

wireless 9-1-1 service.

(5) Enhanced wireless 9-1-1 service

The term "enhanced wireless 9-1-1 service" means any enhanced

9-1-1 service so designated by the Federal Communications

Commission in the proceeding entitled "Revision of the

Commission's Rules to Ensure Compatibility with Enhanced 9-1-1

Emergency Calling Systems" (CC Docket No. 94-102; RM-8143), or

any successor proceeding.

(6) Wireless 9-1-1 service

The term "wireless 9-1-1 service" means any 9-1-1 service

provided by a wireless carrier, including enhanced wireless 9-1-1

service.

(7) Emergency dispatch providers

The term "emergency dispatch providers" shall include

governmental and nongovernmental providers of emergency dispatch

services.

-SOURCE-

(Pub. L. 106-81, Sec. 6, Oct. 26, 1999, 113 Stat. 1289.)

-REFTEXT-

REFERENCES IN TEXT

This Act, referred to in text, is Pub. L. 106-81, Oct. 26, 1999,

113 Stat. 1286, known as the Wireless Communications and Public

Safety Act of 1999, which enacted sections 615 to 615b of this

title, amended sections 222 and 251 of this title, and enacted

provisions set out as notes under sections 609 and 615 of this

title. For complete classification of this Act to the Code, see

Short Title of 1999 Amendments note set out under section 609 of

this title and Tables.

-COD-

CODIFICATION

Section was enacted as part of the Wireless Communications and

Public Safety Act of 1999, and not as part of the Communications

Act of 1934 which comprises this chapter.

-End-