The FCC has tabled a plan to discuss unlocking set-top cable boxes. The plan, which was proposed by FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler, would have allowed consumers to access pay-tv content on third-party devices.
But many within the cable industry have concerns about the plan, as do some FCC members, apparently Womble Carlyle Telecom attorney Mark Palchick told Law360.com that tabling the vote is a “clear indication that there’s a problem in adopting what the chairman wants to do.”
Palchick also said that a later vote on the plan outside of a public meeting would send the wrong message about the FCC’s transparency.
“If Wheeler can get it adopted by circulation I’m sure he would like to,” Palchick tells Law360.com. “If adopting it in an open meeting is suspect without a new NPRM (notice of proposed rulemaking), then adopting it on circulation would be even more suspect or questionable.”
However, he also said that the plan may come back to the table at a later date, particularly if Hillary Clinton, whose FCC would likely resemble the current administration’s, becomes President.
Mark Palchick has been an attorney in the communications field since 1975. He is experienced in matters relating to the domestic and international cable industry, international copyright, negotiations of program affiliation agreements, E-rate funding, pole attachment matters, interconnection agreements between private carriers and other FCC regulatory matters. In 2013 he was honored by the Cable Television Industry and inducted into the Cable Pioneers.