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Government Accountability Office, Video Marketplace: Competition Is Evolving, and Government Reporting Should Be Reevaluated (GAO-13-576) (June 25, 2013) (full-text).


Video provided through subscription video services, such as cable and satellite television, is a central source of news and entertainment for the majority of U.S. households. Technological advances have ushered in a wave of new products and services, bringing online distribution of video to consumers. Federal laws and regulations have sought to foster competition in the video programming and distribution marketplace, but many such laws were adopted prior to the emergence of these advances.

Among other things, the GAO examined (1) how competition has changed since 2005; (2) the increased choices that consumers have in acquiring video programming and content; and (3) stakeholders' views on how the government's regulations, reports, and other activities have kept pace with changes in the industry.

GAO recommends that the FCC study the advantages and disadvantages of different reporting frequencies for its cable industry price and video competition reports and transmit the results of its analysis to Congress. FCC said that the Commission strives to use its resources efficiently to meet the agency's mission and its Congressional requirements, and the Commission is reviewing GAO's recommendation.