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Ongoing Post DOJ Approval XM/Sirius Merger News.
Posted 27 May 2008 - 08:38 PM
XM-Sirius: Still No End in Sight
Federal Communications Commission chairman Kevin Martin remained mum Thursday, when asked by reporters at a news conference about when he might begin circulating an item on the 334-days-and-counting merger of XM Satellite Radio and Sirius Satellite Radio.
Real work on crafting a compromise for conditions on the deal won’t begin in earnest until Martin’s staff produces a draft order and circulates it among the other four FCC commissioners. Even then, it will take at least three weeks for the FCC to come to some kind of agreement, if previous transactions are any indication.
More... too much more....
Posted 27 May 2008 - 08:38 PM
Two senators are asking the Federal Communications Commission to require XM Satellite Radio Holdings Inc. (XMSR) and Sirius Satellite Radio Inc. (SIRI) to divest up to half of their combined radio spectrum as a condition of their proposed merger.
Sens. Claire McCaskill, D-Mo., and Olympia Snowe, R-Maine, on Wednesday sent a letter to Federal Communications Chairman Kevin Martin saying the merged entity would hold more radio spectrum "than all terrestrial FM and AM spectrum combined."
Posted 27 May 2008 - 08:40 PM
XM-Sirius Success Hinges on Concessions
...Among those lobbying the FCC for certain impositions, private-equity firm Georgetown Partners has offered support for the XM-Sirius merger on the condition the FCC hand over to them 20% of the combined company's spectrum....
Also looking to get in on the action is American Public Media, a producer of public radio content. CEO William Kling has asked the FCC to set aside 20% of the combined parties' spectrum for noncommercial educational use....
The National Hispanic Media Coalition is another advocacy group looking for a chunk of XM-Sirius spectrum if the deal is approved. The NHMC, in a letter to the FCC, asked the commission to set aside 15% of the spectrum for minority and women-owned programmers who are unaffiliated in all respects with XM-Sirius.....
Similarly, iBiquity Digital is hoping the FCC will force XM and Sirius to open up their receivers to other satellite broadcasters and developers.
20% +20% + 15% = 55%. Of course, this will have to be on top of the 50% that the illustrious Senators insisted that they give up a few days ago. So, for this to go through all they have to do is give up 105% of their total bandwidth. Sure, that's the solution!!!
Posted 29 May 2008 - 07:28 AM
XM Could Be a June Bride
By Rick Aristotle Munarriz May 28, 2008
The drawn-out courtship between XM Satellite Radio (Nasdaq: XMSR) and Sirius Satellite Radio (Nasdaq: SIRI) -- an engagement that has lasted longer than many Hollywood marriages -- may finally be heading to the altar.
"The commission could act by the end of the second quarter,'' FCC Chairman Kevin Martin told reporters at a Washington D.C. press conference over the weekend.
Posted 21 July 2008 - 06:43 AM
SkyBOX: Gunning for Godot
by Evie Haskell email@example.com
And I agree with Evie. The idiots, er, illustrious, highly esteemed members, of the FCC are simply trying to raise the stakes to the point that the two parties will walk away and the FCC idiots, er, illustrious, highly esteemed members can say, "hey, we tried but they left". The idiots should simply say no if they don't want it to happen.
The Sirius/XM saga continues ... and Samuel Beckett would have been proud. How else could one possibly explain the multilayered, seemingly endless, government-by-the-absurd tragicomedy that is the attempted satellite radio merger?
In the latest act, FCC Commissioner Jonathan Adelstein has brilliantly demonstrated the corruptive nature of power. The situation sets up like this: The DARS duo needs three FCC votes in order to merge; they've got two already. The presumptive third "yea" could come from Republican Commissioner Deborah Taylor Tate. However, Ms Tate's likely ideological approval of the merger is mightily hampered by her close ties to the broadcasting industry. (A special interest plot line if ever there was one.)
So Adelstein, a long-time critic of big-get-bigger media plays and thus a natural "no" vote, has jumped into the fray. At the end of last week, the Democratic Commissioner told the AP that he could certainly back the merger IF ... get ready for the gun now ... IF the companies (1) promise not to raise rates for six years; (2) give up a quarter of their capacity for public interest and minority programming; and (3) meet other miscellaneous conditions. (Like building all their radios to accommodate their competitors.)
Let's just consider point No. 2: Giving up a QUARTER of their capacity. That's about 75 channels, more than triple the number of giveaways proposed by Sirius and XM. So can you hear the giggles in the halls of the NAB over this one? Can you see Ms. Tate swooning in relief? Can you imagine the DARS duo - who, let's not forget, paid more than $80 million each for their DARS licenses, to say nothing of the costs of constructing the systems - actually agreeing to hand out a quarter of their holdings?
I sure can't. But then by the end of Beckett's "Waiting for Godot" the two main characters are listlessly considering suicide. So hey, you never know.
Posted 21 July 2008 - 08:52 AM
As the Federal Communications Commission continues to haggle with XM Satellite Radio Holdings Inc. (XMSR) and Sirius Satellite Radio Inc. (SIRI) over their pending merger, a key FCC commissioner said Monday that he hopes the issue will be resolved by the end of the week.
Posted 24 July 2008 - 10:45 AM
Posted 24 July 2008 - 11:22 AM
Posted 26 July 2008 - 09:16 AM
Posted 26 July 2008 - 01:35 PM
CSPAN radio ... a couple of religious channels ... the political channels ... XM/Sirius will find a way to fill the quota without making it a vast wasteland of bandwidth.