‘Retrans’ Debate Surfaces in Satellite Act Renewal

As Congress considers updates to legislation governing satellite TV — cable TV’s chief competitor — there is ample debate over the subject of “retransmission consent” or “retrans,” a legal artifact that allows broadcast TV stations to charge for their signals, even though they already receive a taxpayer subsidy in the form of free spectrum granted to them by the federal government.

If the retrans rules are altered for satellite, they will hopefully be altered for cable, as well — and that could benefit Suddenlink customers, among others.