PITTSBURGH, April 30, 2020 – ACA Connects President and CEO Matthew M. Polka issued the following statement responding to the April 28 letters sent by N.Y. State Attorney General Letitia James to major multichannel video programming distributors (MVPDs) regarding her desire to see consumer bills reduced to reflect the absence of live TV sports during the COVID-19 pandemic:
“ACA Connects understands the concerns of N.Y. State Attorney General Letitia James about sports programming costs and the impact on consumers. ACA Connects has long highlighted the problem for consumers: Sports programmers and sports leagues leverage MVPDs to extract unconscionable fees and terms that cable operators must pass through to their subscribers, including those who have no interest in such programming.
“Attorney General James is right to question why consumers are paying for expensive sports programming not being aired because of the COVID-19 emergency, but she has taken aim at the wrong target.
“If Attorney General James truly wishes to address consumers’ concerns about sports programming, we recommend she focus on the root cause of the problem and investigate sports programmers, broadcast networks and sports leagues. The members of ACA Connects, their customers, and other MVPDs have been caught in the middle of these sports and media titans for far too long.”
About ACA Connects: America’s Communications Association – Based in Pittsburgh, ACA Connects is a trade organization representing more than 700 smaller and medium-sized, independent companies that provide broadband, phone and video services to nearly 8 million customers primarily located in rural and smaller suburban markets across America. Through active participation in the regulatory and legislative process in Washington, D.C., ACA Connects’ members work together to advance the interests of their customers and ensure the future competitiveness and viability of their businesses. For more information, visit: http://www.ACAConnects.org