Court Blocks FCC-Imposed “Broadcast Flag”

“The U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia reversed a Federal Communications Commission order that required makers of consumer-electronics devices capable of receiving broadcast digital TV signals to recognize a “broadcast flag,” which is code that allows content owners to place limits on redistribution of digital content streams. The rule was to apply to devices manufactured on or after July 1, 2005. Specifically, the court admonished the FCC for exceeding what’s known as its “ancillary authority” over some reception devices (consumer-electronics products) by trying to regulate a function not directly related to the actual transmissions themselves.”