Goto Section: 76.3 | 76.6 | Table of Contents
Revised as of February 18, 2020
Goto Year:2019 |
§ 76.5 Definitions.
(a) Cable system or cable television system. A facility consisting of a
set of closed transmission paths and associated signal generation,
reception, and control equipment that is designed to provide cable
service which includes video programming and which is provided to
multiple subscribers within a community, but such term does not
(1) A facility that services only to retransmit the television signals
of one or more television broadcast stations;
(2) A facility that serves subscribers without using any public
(3) A facility of a common carrier which is subject, in whole or in
part, to the provisions of Title II of the Communications Act of 1934,
as amended, except that such facility shall be considered a cable
system to the extent such facility is used in the transmission of video
programming directly to subscribers, unless the extent of such use is
solely to provide interactive on-demand services;
(4) An open video system that complies with Section 653 of the
Communications Act; or
(5) Any facilities of any electric utility used solely for operating
its electric utility systems.
Note to paragraph (a): The provisions of subparts D and F of this part
shall also apply to all facilities defined previously as cable systems
on or before April 28, 1985, except those that serve subscribers
without using any public right-of-way.
(b) Television station; television broadcast station. Any television
broadcast station operating on a channel regularly assigned to its
community by § 73.606 or § 73.622 of this chapter, and any television
broadcast station licensed by a foreign government: Provided, however,
That a television broadcast station licensed by a foreign government
shall not be entitled to assert a claim to carriage, program
exclusivity, or retransmission consent authorization pursuant to
subpart D or F of this part, but may otherwise be carried if consistent
with the rules on any service tier. Further provided that a television
broadcast station operating on channels regularly assigned to its
community by both § § 73.606 and 73.622 of this chapter may assert a
claim for carriage pursuant to subpart D of this part only for a
channel assigned pursuant to § 73.606.
(c) Television translator station. A television broadcast translator
station as defined in § 74.701 of this chapter.
(d) Grade A and Grade B contours. The field intensity contours defined
in § 73.683(a) of this chapter.
(e) Specified zone of a television broadcast station. The area
extending 56.3 air km (35 air miles) from the reference point in the
community to which that station is licensed or authorized by the
Commission. A list of reference points is contained in § 76.53. A
television broadcast station that is authorized but not operating has a
specified zone that terminates eighteen (18) months after the initial
grant of its construction permit.
(f) Major television market. The specified zone of a commercial
television station licensed to a community listed in § 76.51, or a
combination of such specified zones where more than one community is
(g) Designated community in a major television market. A community
listed in § 76.51.
(h) Smaller television market. The specified zone of a commercial
television station licensed to a community that is not listed in
(i) Significantly viewed. Viewed in over-the-air households as follows:
(1) For a full or partial network station—a share of viewing hours of
at least 3 percent (total week hours), and a net weekly circulation of
at least 25 percent; and (2) for an independent station—a share of
viewing hours of at least 2 percent (total week hours), and a net
weekly circulation of at least 5 percent. See § 76.54.
Note: As used in this paragraph, “share of viewing hours” means the
total hours that over-the-air television households viewed the subject
station during the week, expressed as a percentage of the total hours
these households viewed all stations during the period, and “net weekly
circulation” means the number of over-the-air television households
that viewed the station for 5 minutes or more during the entire week,
expressed as a percentage of the total over-the-air television
households in the survey area.
(j) Full network station. A commercial television broadcast station
that generally carries in weekly prime time hours 85 percent of the
hours of programing offered by one of the three major national
television networks with which it has a primary affiliation (i.e.,
right of first refusal or first call).
(k) Partial network station. A commercial television broadcast station
that generally carries in prime time more than 10 hours of programming
per week offered by the three major national television networks, but
less than the amount specified in paragraph (j) of this section.
(l) Independent station. A commercial television broadcast station that
generally carries in prime time not more than 10 hours of programing
per week offered by the three major national television networks.
(m) A network program is any program delivered simultaneously to more
than one broadcast station regional or national, commercial or
(n) Prime time. The 5-hour period from 6 to 11 p.m., local time, except
that in the central time zone the relevant period shall be between the
hours of 5 and 10 p.m., and in the mountain time zone each station
shall elect whether the period shall be 6 to 11 p.m. or 5 to 10 p.m.
Note: Unless the Commission is notified to the contrary, a station in
the mountain time zone shall be presumed to have elected the 6 to 11
(o) Cablecasting. Programming (exclusive of broadcast signals) carried
on a cable television system. See paragraphs (y), (z) and (aa) (Classes
II, III, and IV cable television channels) of this section.
(p) Origination cablecasting. Programing (exclusive of broadcast
signals) carried on a cable television system over one or more channels
and subject to the exclusive control of the cable operator.
(q) Legally qualified candidate. (1) Any person who:
(i) Has publicly announced his or her intention to run for nomination
(ii) Is qualified under the applicable local, State or Federal law to
hold the office for which he or she is a candidate; and
(iii) Has met the qualifications set forth in either paragraphs (q)(2),
(3) or (4) of this section.
(2) A person seeking election to any public office including that of
President or Vice President of the United States, or nomination for any
public office except that of President or Vice President, by means of a
primary, general or special election, shall be considered a legally
qualified candidate if, in addition to meeting the criteria set forth
in paragraph (q)(1) of this section, that person:
(i) Has qualified for a place on the ballot, or
(ii) Has publicly committed himself or herself to seeking election by
the write-in method and is eligible under applicable law to be voted
for by sticker, by writing in his or her name on the ballot or by other
method, and makes a substantial showing that he or she is a bona fide
candidate for nomination or office.
Persons seeking election to the office of President or Vice President
of the United States shall, for the purposes of the Communications Act
and the rules thereunder, be considered legally qualified candidates
only in those States or territories (or the District of Columbia) in
which they have met the requirements set forth in paragraphs (q) (1)
and (2) of this rule; except that any such person who has met the
requirements set forth in paragraphs (q) (1) and (2) in at least 10
States (or nine and the District of Columbia) shall be considered a
legally qualified candidate for election in all States, territories and
the District of Columbia for purposes of this Act.
(3) A person seeking nomination to any public office except that of
President or Vice President of the United States, by means of a
convention, caucus or similar procedure, shall be considered a legally
qualified candidate if, in addition to meeting the requirements set
forth in paragraph (q)(1) of this section, that person makes a
substantial showing that he or she is a bona fide candidate for such
nomination; except that no person shall be considered a legally
qualified candidate for nomination by the means set forth in this
paragraph prior to 90 days before the beginning of the convention,
caucus or similar procedure in which he or she seeks nomination.
(4) A person seeking nomination for the office of President or Vice
President of the United States shall, for the purposes of the
Communications Act and the rules thereunder, be considered a legally
qualified candidate only in those States or territories (or the
District of Columbia) in which, in addition meeting the requirements
set forth in paragraph (q)(1) of this section.
(i) He or she, or proposed delegates on his or her behalf, have
qualified for the primary of Presidential preference ballot in that
State, territory or the District of Columbia, or
(ii) He or she has made a substantial showing of bona fide candidacy
for such nomination in that State, territory of the District of
Columbia; except that such person meeting the requirements set forth in
paragraph (q) (1) and (4) in at least 10 States (or nine and the
District of Columbia) shall be considered a legally qualified candidate
for nomination in all States, territories and the District of Columbia
for purposes of the Act.
(5) The term “substantial showing” of bona fide candidacy as used in
paragraph (q) (2), (3) and (4) of this section means evidence that the
person claiming to be a candidate has engaged to a substantial degree
in activities commonly associated with political campaigning. Such
activities normally would include making campaign speeches,
distributing campaign literature, issuing press releases, maintaining a
campaign headquarters (even though the headquarters in some instances
might be the residence of the candidate or his campaign manager). Not
all of the listed activities are necessarily required in each case to
demonstrate a substantial showing, and there may be activities not
listed herein which would contribute to such a showing.
(r) Class I cable television channel. A signaling path provided by a
cable television system to relay to subscriber terminals television
broadcast programs that are received off-the-air or are obtained by
microwave or by direct connection to a television broadcast station.
(s) Class II cable television channel. A signaling path provided by a
cable television system to deliver to subscriber terminals television
signals that are intended for reception by a television broadcast
receiver without the use of an auxilliary decoding device and which
signals are not involved in a broadcast transmission path.
(t) Class III cable television channel. A signaling path provided by a
cable television system to deliver to subscriber terminals signals that
are intended for reception by equipment other than a television
broadcast receiver or by a television broadcast receiver only when used
with auxiliary decoding equipment.
(u) Class IV cable television channel. A signaling path provided by a
cable television system to transmit signals of any type from a
subscriber terminal to another point in the cable television system.
(v) Subscriber terminal. The cable television system terminal to which
a subscriber's equipment is connected. Separate terminals may be
provided for delivery of signals of various classes. Terminal devices
interconnected to subscriber terminals of a cable system must comply
with the provisions of part 15 of this Chapter for TV interface
(w) System noise. That combination of undesired and fluctuating
disturbances within a cable television channel that degrades the
transmission of the desired signal and that is due to modulation
processes or thermal or other noise-producing effects, but does not
include hum and other undesired signals of discrete frequency. System
noise is specified in terms of its rms voltage or its mean power level
as measured in the 4 MHz bandwidth between 1.25 and 5.25 MHz above the
lower channel boundary of a cable television channel.
(x) Terminal isolation. The attenuation, at any subscriber terminal,
between that terminal and any other subscriber terminal in the cable
(y) Visual signal level. The rms voltage produced by the visual signal
during the transmission of synchronizing pulses.
(z) Affiliate. When used in relation to any person, another person who
owns or controls, is owned or controlled by, or is under common
ownership or control with, such person.
(aa) Person. An individual, partnership, association, joint stock
company, trust, corporation, or governmental entity.
(bb) Significant interest. A cognizable interest for attributing
interests in broadcast, cable, and newspaper properties pursuant to
§ § 73.3555, 73.3615, and 76.501.
(cc) Cable system operator. Any person or group of persons (1) who
provides cable service over a cable system and directly or through one
or more affiliates owns a significant interest in such cable system; or
(2) who otherwise controls or is responsible for, through any
arrangement, the management and operation of such a cable system.
(dd) System community unit: Community unit. A cable television system,
or portion of a cable television system, that operates or will operate
within a separate and distinct community or municipal entity (including
unincorporated communities within unincorporated areas and including
single, discrete unincorporated areas).
(ee) Subscribers. (1) As used in the context of cable service,
subscriber or cable subscriber means a member of the general public who
receives broadcast programming distributed by a cable television system
and does not further distribute it.
(2) As used in the context of satellite service, subscriber or
satellite subscriber means a person who receives a secondary
transmission service from a satellite carrier and pays a fee for the
service, directly or indirectly, to the satellite carrier or to a
(ff) Cable service. The one-way transmission to subscribers of video
programming, or other programming service; and, subscriber interaction,
if any, which is required for the selection or use of such video
programming or other programming service. For the purposes of this
definition, “video programming” is programming provided by, or
generally considered comparable to programming provided by, a
television broadcast station; and, “other programming service” is
information that a cable operator makes available to all subscribers
(gg) Satellite community. (1) For purposes of the significantly viewed
rules (see § 76.54), a separate and distinct community or municipal
entity (including unincorporated communities within unincorporated
areas and including single, discrete unincorporated areas). The
boundaries of any such unincorporated community may be defined by one
or more adjacent five-digit zip code areas. Satellite communities apply
only in areas in which there is no pre-existing cable community, as
defined in paragraph (dd) of this section.
(2) For purposes of the market modification rules (see § 76.59), a
(hh) Input selector switch. Any device that enables a viewer to select
between cable service and off-the-air television signals. Such a device
may be more sophisticated than a mere two-sided switch, may utilize
other cable interface equipment, and may be built into consumer
(ii) A syndicated program is any program sold, licensed, distributed or
offered to television station licensees in more than one market within
the United States other than as network programming as defined in
(jj) Rural area. A community unit with a density of less than 19
households per route kilometer or thirty households per route mile of
coaxial and/or fiber optic cable trunk and feeder line.
(kk) Technically integrated. Having 75% or more of the video channels
received from a common headend.
(ll) Cable home wiring. The internal wiring contained within the
premises of a subscriber which begins at the demarcation point. Cable
home wiring includes passive splitters on the subscriber's side of the
demarcation point, but does not include any active elements such as
amplifiers, converter or decoder boxes, or remote control units.
(mm) Demarcation point. (1) For new and existing single unit
installations, the demarcation point shall be a point at (or about)
twelve inches outside of where the cable wire enters the subscriber's
(2) For new and existing multiple dwelling unit installations with
non-loop-through wiring configurations, the demarcation point shall be
a point at (or about) twelve inches outside of where the cable wire
enters the subscriber's dwelling unit, or, where the wire is physically
inaccessible at such point, the closest practicable point thereto that
does not require access to the individual subscriber's dwelling unit.
(3) For new and existing multiple dwelling unit installations with
loop-through wiring configurations, the demarcation points shall be at
(or about) twelve inches outside of where the cable wire enters or
exits the first and last individual dwelling units on the loop, or,
where the wire is physically inaccessible at such point(s), the closest
practicable point thereto that does not require access to an individual
subscriber's dwelling unit.
(4) As used in this paragraph (mm)(3), the term “physically
inaccessible” describes a location that:
(i) Would require significant modification of, or significant damage
to, preexisting structural elements, and
(ii) Would add significantly to the physical difficulty and/or cost of
accessing the subscriber's home wiring.
Note to § 76.5 paragraph (mm)(4): For example, wiring embedded in brick,
metal conduit, cinder blocks, or sheet rock with limited or without
access openings would likely be physically inaccessible; wiring
enclosed within hallway molding would not.
(nn) Activated channels. Those channels engineered at the headend of a
cable system for the provision of services generally available to
residential subscribers of the cable system, regardless of whether such
services actually are provided, including any channel designated for
public, educational or governmental use.
(oo) Usable activated channels. Those activated channels of a cable
system, except those channels whose use for the distribution of
broadcast signals would conflict with technical and safety regulations.
See part 76, subpart K.
(pp) Principal headend. (1) The headend, in the case of a cable system
with a single headend or,
(2) In the case of a cable system with more than one headend, the
principal headend designated by the cable operator, except that such
designation shall not undermine or evade the requirements of subpart D
of this part. Each cable system must provide information regarding the
designation and location of the principal headend to the Commission
promptly upon request. Except for good cause, an operator may not
change its choice of principal headend. Cable systems may elect
voluntarily to provide the location of the principal headend in the
Commission's online public inspection file database and may choose
whether to make this information accessible only by the Commission or
to also make it publicly available. Systems that elect not to provide
this information in the online file, or to protect this information in
the online file from public view, must make it available to broadcast
television stations and local franchisors upon request. If a request is
submitted by a television station or franchisor in writing by certified
mail, cable systems must respond in writing by certified mail within 15
calendar days. Cable systems may in addition elect to respond to
requests from these entities submitted by telephone or email, but must
respond in writing by certified mail if requested to do so by the
station or franchisor.
(qq) Emergency Alert System (EAS). The EAS is composed of broadcast
networks; cable networks and program suppliers; AM, FM and TV broadcast
stations; Low Power TV (LPTV) stations; cable systems and wireless
cable systems; and other entities and industries operating on an
organized basis during emergencies at the National, State, or local
[ 37 FR 3278 , Feb. 12, 1972]
Editorial Note: For Federal Register citations affecting § 76.5, see the
List of CFR Sections Affected, which appears in the Finding Aids
section of the printed volume and at www.govinfo.gov.
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