The FCC has granted Cablevision a waiver of its encryption rule prohibiting cable operators from scrambling their basic tiers for the cable operator's New York franchise--Bronx and the majority of Brooklyn--which it is converting to all-digital. The Consumer Electronics Association (CEA) and the Association for Maximum Service Television had opposed the waiver. They argued that it would negatively affect thousands of consumer devices, disenfranchise those consumers and could put some companies out of business. The wavier was announced just as CEA is meeting in Las Vegas for its annual Consumer Electronics Show, and at almost the same time FCC Chairman Julius Genachowski was scheduled for a Q&A session with CEA president Gary Shapiro. The encryption rule was adopted to insure that viewers with cable-ready sets would not have to buy/rent set-tops to get their programming. But the FCC left room for waivers in some circumstances, and said Jan. 8 that Cablevision had made a strong case for the waiver. Cablevision said the waiver would allow it to connect and disconnect remotely, though that means its subs would have to have either a set-top or a TV set with the CableCARD security hardware.
Posted by rlssec