The merger between the nation’s two favorite satellite radio providers has not yet been officially approved, but FCC Chairman Kevin Martin is all for the move, so long as the two parties adhere to no fewer than three ground rules.
First, the resulting company (it’s unclear whether they will continue to operate separately or as one unified brand) will have to freeze prices for three years. This is prevent any nasty price hikes thanks to the newfound satellite radio monopoly.
Second, XM-Sirius would have to offer “a la carte” options to consumers within three months of the merger. No longer will it be necessary to do a pricier all-you-can-listen monthly plan.
Third, they would have to dedicated at least eight percent (24 channels) of the airspace to noncommercial and minority programming. Public access radio will still have a place in the area of satellite radio.
Kevin Martin is one of the five relevant votes, so we’ll have to hear from the other four guys before the merger can be approved and proceed as planned. In the meantime, these three rules sound peachy keen to me.