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Tennis Channel and Comcast have been engaged in a bitter dispute over the provider’s refusal to carry Tennis Channel since July 2010. Tennis Channel claimed that Comcast discriminated against the channel and gave preferential treatment to other sports networks, such as The Golf Channel and Versus. Tennis Channel argued that this impeded its ability to compete fairly in the video programming marketplace. In December 2011, an administrative judge ruled in favor of Tennis Channel and fined Comcast $375,000. Additionally, the judge ordered Comcast to give equal treatment to the channel. Comcast appealed the decision, which was subsequently affirmed by the Federal Communications Commission, Appellate Division. The order issued by the FCC held that “Comcast had discriminated with regard to carriage against Tennis Channel and in favor of Golf Channel and Versus on the basis of affiliation in violation of Section 616 of the Communications Act, 47 U.S.C. § 536, and Section 76.1301(c) of the Commission’s rules, 47 C.F.R. § 76.1301(c).” That decision gave Comcast 45 days to comply with the order.

This post was originally published on the Cardozo Arts & Entertainment Law Journal website on September 2, 2012. The original post can be accessed via the Archived Link button above.

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