In rare but refreshing bipartisan good news out of Congress, Senator Thom Tillis (R – North Carolina…
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Members of Congress Stand Up for Property Rights

In rare but refreshing bipartisan good news out of Congress, Senator Thom Tillis (R – North Carolina) and Representatives Ben Cline (R - Virginia), Theodore Deutch (D - Florida), Martha Roby (R - Alabama) and Harley Rouda (D – California) have just taken a firm stand protecting property rights – copyrights specifically – and merit our praise.

As we’ve long highlighted, property rights constitute a central pillar of “American Exceptionalism,” and that includes intellectual property (IP) rights – copyrights, patents, trademarks and trade secrets.   Our Founding Fathers considered IP so important that they deliberately and explicitly singled it out for protection in the text of the Constitution.  As a direct result, we’ve become the most innovative and prosperous nation…[more]

December 06, 2019 • 02:15 pm

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Home Press Room CFIF Announces Support for Bipartisan “Modern Television Act of 2019”
CFIF Announces Support for Bipartisan “Modern Television Act of 2019” Print
Thursday, July 25 2019

ALEXANDRIA, VA – Today, Representatives Steve Scalise (R - Louisiana) and Anna Eshoo (D – California) introduced the "Modern Television Act of 2019," which would reform America's obsolete and stifling video marketplace laws.  In response, Center for Individual Freedom ("CFIF") Senior Vice President of Legal and Public Affairs Timothy Lee issued the following statement: 

"CFIF enthusiastically supports the Modern Television Act of 2019, which reduces federal government interference in the American video marketplace, and allows negotiations between broadcasters and video programming distributors to occur in more of a free market environment.  Current laws, enacted all the way back in 1992 in a drastically different video environment, distort the free market by tipping the scales in negotiations. 

"Those rules governing retransmission consent, 'must-carry' obligations and compulsory copyright were created in a bygone era when most television markets were served by a single monopoly cable provider.  Nearly three long decades later, the video market is a very different place.  Today, such alternatives as satellite, internet and alternative cable providers offer a wide array of consumer choices.  Unfortunately, however, federal regulations remain unchanged and don't reflect the tectonic shifts that have occurred in the video market.  What that means is that broadcasters enjoy a bureaucratic advantage during negotiations, which in turn allows them to extract exorbitant retransmission consent fees while retaining the option of invoking must-carry laws.  That prevents the free market from properly functioning in this ever-changing consumer arena, and consumers pay the price. 

"Removing the federal bureaucracy's finger from the scale offers dramatic improvement, and improves the ability of all parties to negotiate in a free market in which neither side enjoys an improper government advantage.  The bipartisan Modern Television Act of 2019 introduced by Representatives Scalise and Eshoo helps accomplish that end.  We at CFIF therefore applaud their leadership, and urge Congress to pass the Modern Television Act of 2019 without delay." 

CFIF is a constitutional and free market advocacy organization with over 300,000 supporters and activists nationwide. 

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