but the new rule still won’t be effective for some time.
Last September we reported on the FCC’s decision to (finally) allow broadcasters to post on their websites the rules to contests they promote on the air. The Commission’s Report and Order has now made it into the Federal Register. That’s the good news. The bad news is that that fact does not mean that the new rule has taken effect. That’s because the new rule imposes some “information collections”, and we all know what that means: rules involving new “information collections” cannot take effect until they have been run through the Paperwork Reduction Act drill. That process requires the Office of Management and Budget to look the new rule over and declare it OK, at which point the FCC publishes another notice in the Federal Register announcing the effective date. While the OMB review process is already underway for the revised contest rule, it’s not likely to wrap up for another few months. Check back here for updates on that front.
The publication of the Report and Order in the Federal Register does do one thing: it establishes the date by which any petitions for reconsideration of the new rule must be filed. That date is November 23, 2015. Given the seemingly unanimous support that this rule change attracted, we’re not sure why anyone might seek reconsideration, but if they want to, they now know their deadline. We’ll keep an eye out and report on any petitions for reconsideration that walk in the door.