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EchoStar continued to defend its use of a second dish for reception of a select set of local TV channels at the Federal Communications Commission, responding to new charges surfacing from broadcasters fighting the solution.

In its most recent contact with the agency on the topic, EchoStar refuted claims made by the National Association of Broadcasters that the FCC has authority to prohibit satellite TV companies from requiring consumers to get a second dish to receive local channels. Even though the NAB suggests that an interpretation of an FCC rule gives it power to ban the second-dish solution, "the NAB generally does not dispute - even belatedly - that the implementing regulation does not prohibit the use of a free second dish," EchoStar told the commission.

New York City broadcast station WLNY also argued at the FCC that the second dish solution is barred by FCC regulations since it can be considered a navigational device. EchoStar disputed that claim, saying WLNY's argument relies on commission rules unrelated to the second-dish issue.

In wrapping up its comments on the issue, EchoStar said, "If hundreds of thousands of subscribers are willing to buy a second dish to get the programming they want, it is not surprising that thousands of subscribers have obtained a second dish for free to get the local channels they want, and to have access to other programming they might want to receive in the future."

The second dish EchoStar is offering to customers supplies local networks outside of typical network affiliates and more popular stations. The second dish channel set contains independent stations, off-air shopping nets and Spanish-language programming, among other channels.

From SkyReport (Used with permission)
 
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