Industry wants to wait until court rules on law's viability

WASHINGTON — The National Assn. of Broadcasters has urged a federal appeals court to let stand the looming deadline by which the satellite biz must begin carrying all local channels in any market where a broadcasteroffers even just one signal.

As the law stands now, satcasters will come under the none-or-all rule beginning Jan. 1.

The satellite industry, however, has argued that the deadline should be ignored until a federal appeals court in Richmond, Va., determines the viability of the rule itself. EchoStar Communications and the Satellite Broadcasting & Communications Assn. are challenging the local carriage rule.

The NAB, however, argued in court papers filed Monday that any delay beyond Jan. 1 would be unfair to broadcasters, who have already waited long enough to be carried on satellite systems. If a satcasterdoesn’t want to carry local signals, fine.

Consumer advocates, led by the Media Access Project, also have asked the court to let the Jan. 1 carriage rule stand.

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