National / International News

FCC dumps blackout rule

Marketplace - American Public Media - Tue, 2014-09-30 07:30

The Federal Communications Commission voted this morning to eliminate the controversial blackout rule. The rule, which mainly applies to NFL games, says if 85 percent of tickets aren’t sold, teams can prevent local broadcasts of games. 

If NFL teams decided to impose the rule for a game, free local TV couldn’t broadcast it. The rule further said cable and satellite TV couldn’t air it locally, either.

The NFL didn't want the blackout rule eliminated. It has said that without the rule, it could just move all its games to cable, putting them out of reach of low income fans who can’t afford cable. 

“The NFL is doing a lot of posturing here,” says Andrew Zimbalist, a sports economist at Smith College. He says NFL teams can still tell broadcasters and cable outlets to black out games. It doesn’t need the FCC to do that. “The NFL can still negotiate to black out the game whenever there’s a deficiency in attendance. So we’re unlikely to see any appreciable effect here.”

And, Zimbalist says, if the NFL did try to move all its games onto cable, it would violate a law called the Sports Broadcasting Act, which was designed to keep games on TV.

 

 

 

 

 

 

The numbers for September 30, 2014

Marketplace - American Public Media - Tue, 2014-09-30 07:25

Six people have hopped the White House fence so far this year. The latest incident — in which the intruder reportedly blew through at least five layers of security before he was caught — put Secret Service Director Julia Pierson under fire at a congressional hearing Monday. Lawmakers were also livid after the Washington Post reported the Secret Service was slow to respond when shots were fired at the White House in 2011. Pierson took full responsibility for the problems and pledged to review Secret Service procedure.

Here's what we're reading — and the numbers we're watching — Tuesday.

41 percent

The predicted drop in revenue for utilities if solar power gets just 10 percent of the market. Rooftop solar panels are getting cheaper all the time, although they only account for 0.4 percent of the energy produced in the U.S. now. Because 43 states have "net metering" laws allowing solar users to sell their excess energy back to electric companies, Vox reported, the proliferation of rooftop panels could put utilities in a "death spiral."

$7.2 billion

That's how much PayPal made in the past year, and their revenue is rising faster than parent company eBay's has. The company announced Monday it would spin off PayPal into its own company, Business Insider reports. EBay acquired the online payment system for $1.5 billion in 2002, and these days PayPal claims to facilitate one out of every six dollars spent online.

0

As of last week, there are precisely zero Saturday morning cartoon programming blocks on TV. The last one, the CW's "Vortexx," aired for the last time on Saturday. The marathons, once a staple of American childhood and the ideal pairing with sugary cereals, were killed by a combination of FCC regulation and the spread of cable. /Film has a nice look back at the various cartoon blocks from the '80s and the commercials that aired with them.

Boris: Election win 'within grasp'

BBC - Tue, 2014-09-30 07:16
Boris Johnson tells Tories that election victory is "within the party's grasp" and David Cameron has "permission to purr".

Boris v Theresa: Speech battle

BBC - Tue, 2014-09-30 07:05
They are both often named as future leaders. Who did best?

PODCAST: Think of it as a conscious uncoupling

Marketplace - American Public Media - Tue, 2014-09-30 07:00

EBay decides it's time for PayPal to be pushed back out of the nest: There's news this morning that the auction company eBay will spin off its payment system, PayPal. Plus, tomorrow is the first of October, one year since the rollout of Healthcare.gov, and the texture of health care in America is changing. For instance, there's been disruption in the old pattern of health care providers sending bills and the insurance companies paying their portion. Now, some insurers are tying what they pay to how well the doctors, hospitals and labs are doing their jobs. And call it social and environmental investing, call it impact investing, applying our personal values to our portfolios is not a new idea. One big example in the 1980s was college students forcing their universities to sell their stakes in companies that did business with apartheid South Africa. But now some influential countries have come together to recommend that governments help impact investing become an even more powerful force for making the world a better place. 

Database Flaws Cloud Sunshine On Industry Payments To Doctors

NPR News - Tue, 2014-09-30 06:57

A federal website set to go live Tuesday will disclose drug and device companies' ties to doctors. The release marks a milestone, but could be misleading for patients checking up on their doctors.

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In NFL Game, A Slide And A Prayer Spur Debate And Clarification

NPR News - Tue, 2014-09-30 06:55

The NFL sides with fans who criticized an unsportsmanlike-conduct penalty called on a Muslim player who prostrated himself in the end zone Monday night.

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Constance stands for SNP deputy job

BBC - Tue, 2014-09-30 06:53
Scottish Youth Employment Minister Angela Constance will become the third person to contest the deputy leadership of the SNP.

Man Utd's Herrera joins injury list

BBC - Tue, 2014-09-30 06:52
Manchester United's Ander Herrera may be out for several weeks after fracturing a rib in the victory over West Ham.

MP sting investigation 'urgent'

BBC - Tue, 2014-09-30 06:40
Chairman of press watchdog says an investigation into the sting that led to a Conservative minister's resignation is of "urgent public concern"

Ofqual warns on essay cheating

BBC - Tue, 2014-09-30 06:40
Students who submit essays bought online are not only cheating but may also be paying for a poor product, says England's exams regulator.

Family call for answers after death

BBC - Tue, 2014-09-30 06:37
The family of a disabled man who died after a routine operation at Wrexham Maelor Hospital tell an inquest his death should never have happened.

VIDEO: 'I hid from boulders as volcano erupted'

BBC - Tue, 2014-09-30 06:37
A mountain guide who was on Mount Ontake when it erupted speaks about the moment it exploded without warning.

EU to keep Russia sanctions in place

BBC - Tue, 2014-09-30 06:36
The EU decides to keep sanctions on Russia in place, judging that Ukraine's peace deal is not fully effective.

May: Our values will beat extremists

BBC - Tue, 2014-09-30 06:36
A future Conservative government would seek new powers to ban extremist groups and curb the activities of "harmful" individuals, Theresa May says.

Ireland gave 'state aid' to Apple

BBC - Tue, 2014-09-30 05:50
The European Commission publishes a letter it sent to Ireland accusing the country of giving Apple illegal state aid through special tax arrangements.

Tax and tech

BBC - Tue, 2014-09-30 05:44
Rory Cellan-Jones on relationship between government and tech giants

Death of three-week-old baby boy

BBC - Tue, 2014-09-30 05:42
The unexplained death of a three-week-old baby boy which is being investigated by police is not being treated as suspicious.

Billy Elliot show tops UK box office

BBC - Tue, 2014-09-30 05:40
A special live screening of Billy Elliot the Musical Live tops the UK and Ireland box office taking £1.9m - making it the highest grossing event cinema release.

Afghanistan Signs Deal Allowing 10,000 U.S. Troops To Remain

NPR News - Tue, 2014-09-30 05:36

The Bilateral Security Agreement, approved by newly inaugurated President Ashraf Ghani, will keep some U.S. forces in Afghanistan past the end of the year.

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