Says Comcast Engaged in Unlawful Discrimination in Violation of the FCC’s Order in the Comcast-NBC Universal Merger
DETROIT, MICHIGAN/USA – The Word Network, the leading and most popular African American religious network in the world, told the FCC that Comcast violated its obligations codified in the FCC’s Order approving the merger between Comcast-NBC Universal when it unilaterally removed The Word Network from nearly 7 million homes in January.
The FCC’s Order prohibits Comcast from discriminating against networks such as The Word Network based on affiliation or non-affiliation with Comcast. At the same time as Comcast decreased distribution for The Word Network – the leading network in its category – it has given networks Comcast owns better distribution and financial terms even for Comcast’s poorly performing networks. This is not the first time Comcast has flaunted its commitments in the Comcast-NBC Universal merger.
In addition, denying millions of African Americans access to religious programming on which they rely belies Comcast’s public commitments to diversity, which it very publicly promoted at the time it was seeking approval of the merger with NBC Universal.
The Word Network is confident that the Commission will see through Comcast’s transparent actions to promote the NBC Universal networks they now own, while making harmful and discriminatory actions against minority networks such as The Word Network.
In the complaint to the FCC, The Word Network tells the Commission: “Comcast’s treatment of [the independent, unaffiliated Word Network] is precisely the behavior about which the Commission was concerned during its review of the Comcast’s acquisition of NBC Universal.”