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April 1, 2014 by · Leave a Comment 

In a major blow to some local stations, the FCC on Monday effectively invalidated joint sales agreements under which one station sells advertising on its own and on another station. FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler, who had opposed the so-called JSAs, had previously commented that they were being used as an end-run around FCC rules that bar companies from owning more than one station in a single market. Broadcasters have contended that JSAs are necessary to allow them to compete effectively against cable giants. After the commission’s vote, Dennis Wharton, the National Association of Broadcasters’ head of communications, said, “For a decade, Republican- and Democratically-controlled FCCs have approved JSAs, which allow free and local TV stations to survive in a hyper-competitive world dominated by pay TV Giants. That model is now declared illegal, based on the arguments of pay TV companies whose collaborative interconnect advertising sales practices make JSAs seem pale by comparison.”