Community media groups joined with a nationwide coalition of municipalities and regional organizations today in filing a Petition for Declaratory Ruling with the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) charging that telecom giant AT&T discriminates against local public channels with its U-verse cable TV system.

“Relegating local, non-profit media channels to second-class status is a disservice to the public and violates both the spirit and letter of the law,” said Helen Soule, Executive Director of the Alliance for Community Media (ACM), which represents local Public, Educational and Government (PEG) channels nationwide.

Annie Folger, Executive Director of the Midpeninsula Community Media Center alerts local viewers: “Before you switch from traditional cable TV to AT&T’s U-Verse service, you should be aware that finding your Palo Alto, East Palo Alto or Menlo Park city council meeting on our community channels will be much more difficult than finding a regular, commercial channel.”

Today’s Petition asks the FCC to rule that AT&T’s PEG product unlawfully discriminates against PEG programming in violation of the 1984 Cable Act and Commission rulings and policies.

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