Home Box Office Hbo V Fcc
  • HBO v. FCC is a D.C. Cir. Appeals case in which Home Box Office (HBO) challenged orders of the Federal Communications Commission regulating and limiting the program fare cablecasters and subscription broadcast television stations offer to the public for a fee.
  • The case considered the question of the FCC's so-called "siphoning" rules, which called for cablecasters to offer for a fee programming originally offered on broadcast (free) television.

*Outcome: The court held that the FCC siphoning rules were invalid, suggesting that "cable operators enjoy First Amendment rights identical to those afforded newspaper publishers." This decision "expanded cable's ability to attract customers and cable operators' ability to offer programs other than those fully funded by advertising." Cable penetration and subscription rates climbed.

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