NCTA Washington confab seen as sign of weakness


Cable / SatelliteTypically the big communications organizations hold their conventions at locations all over the map – NAB can be found in Las Vegas once a year and uses a variety of locations for its annual radio meeting. So NCTA’s decision to meet in Washington raised eyebrows at one Wall Street news outlet.

The news outlet is The Street. Writing an opinion for it, Dana Blankenhorn said, “When an industry moves its annual conference to Washington, it wants that to be seen as a sign of strength. Its ability to hire bureaucrats that represent its interests, and get politicians to appear before it, is meant to make opponents fear its might. But tech reporters know this as a sign of market weakness. If you’re running to government for help, the market is saying some very bad things. It is wise to ask what those bad things are.”

The Street noted a number of items on cable’s wish list – and there is so much on it that the one most familiar to readers of this space – government assistance in retransmission consent negotiations – didn’t even earn a spot on it.

* It wants the DOE to avoid writing efficiency standards for set-top boxes

* It wants the government to back off on broadband matters

* It wants no government intervention while it tries to prevent online program sources from gaining effective competitiveness