FCC seeks more channel choices in cable lineups

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WASHINGTON (AP) ? Federal regulators are adopting new rules intended to give cable viewers more channel choices.

The rules, adopted by the Federal Communications Commission Monday, aim to make it easier for independent television programmers to get their channels carried in cable system lineups. The agency wants to prevent cable companies from discriminating against independent channels that may compete with their own networks.

Program carriage disputes have pitted programmers against cable giants. Tennis Network and the NFL Network, for instance, filed complaints with the FCC in recent years, accusing Comcast Corp. of discriminating against them by relegating them to a premium sports tier that reaches only a small number of subscribers. Comcast, the nation’s largest cable company, owns some of its own sports networks including Golf Channel and Versus.