It seems Comcast are not above playing dirty trick on their rivals to keep itslf top dog.http://arstechnica.com/news.ars/post/20081013-fcc-goes-with-nfl-network-against-comcast.html
The Federal Communications Commission weighed in on the bitter battle between the NFL Network and Comcast on Friday night. The agency says that it finds convincing charges that Comcast fouled NFLN by refusing to carry it on its most popular tier. The Commission also sympathizes with evidence suggesting that Comcast demanded a financial interest NFL Network programming in exchange for carriage, another violation of the agency's rules.
The Communications Act forbids a multichannel video programming distributor (MVPD) from discriminating against content providers "on the basis of affiliation or nonaffiliation" with the MVPD. Over the last year NFLN has repeatedly charged that Comcast's "discriminatory" tiering practices have caused a "dramatic" drop in NFL Network subscribers, more selling and operating costs, and have harmed the programmer's ability to compete for advertising revenue.
As per the agency's rules, both the discrimination and financial interest questions will now go before an Administrative Law Judge, who must make recommendations regarding the matter to the Commission within 60 days. The FCC made a slew of similar judgment calls on Friday about complaints by various programmers against Comcast and other MVPDs, including Bright House Networks, Cox Communications, and Time Warner Cable.
When you live under the spotlight you have to expect the beam to hit you at some stage and in this case it surely has.