After arguing for nearly two months that a sweeping new FCC mandate is necessary to create competition in the marketplace for video navigation devices, FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler made the following statement today at a hearing before the House Energy and Commerce Committee’s Communications and Technology Subcommittee:
“The interesting thing is that there are today the equivalent of competitive set top boxes available in the market — for instance, Google Chrome[cast]. A lot of things we hear about how this is Google’s big plan to take over cable tv – malarkey. Google Chrome[cast], which attaches into the port in your TV [and] allows you to pull things off of the web, does not violate copyright, does not overlay commercials, does not do all of the horrible things everybody says a set-top box like that would do.”
The Future of TV Coalition issued the following statement in response to Chairman Wheeler’s remarks:
“If the classic Washington definition of a ‘gaffe’ is to accidentally tell the truth, Chairman Wheeler’s comments at today’s hearing are a whopper. He admitted, plainly and clearly, that app-powered devices like Chromecast and Roku offer consumers an alternative to traditional set-top boxes and are readily available in the marketplace. Which begs the question — why is the Chairman so desperate to solve a problem that he admits does not exist?
“Chairman Wheeler correctly points out that apps-driven innovation is already allowing consumers to watch video on a wide range of devices — without hurting small and independent programmers, invading privacy, or undermining copyright protections. Why then is he proposing a sweeping mandate that explicitly rejects this apps approach and strips TV providers of the technical and contractual tools they currently use to ensure these protections remain in place?”
See the original article at: Press Release