Historical and Revision Notes
house report no. 94–1476

Section 509(b) specifies a new discretionary remedy for alteration of programming by cable systems in violation of section 111(c)(3): the court in such cases may decree that, “for a period not to exceed thirty days, the cable system shall be deprived of the benefit of a compulsory license for one or more distant signals carried by such cable system.” The term “distant signals” in this provision is intended to have a meaning consistent with the definition of “distant signal equivalent” in section 111.

Under section 509(a), four types of plaintiffs are entitled to bring an action in cases of alteration of programming by cable systems in violation of section 111(c)(3). For regular copyright owners and local broadcaster-licensees, the full battery of remedies for infringement would be available. The two new classes of potential plaintiffs under section 501(d)—the distant-signal transmitter and other local stations—would be limited to the following remedies: (i) discretionary injunctions; (ii) discretionary costs and attorney’s fees; (iii) any actual damages the plaintiff can prove were attributable to the act of altering program content; and (iv) the new discretionary remedy of suspension of compulsory licensing.

Editorial Notes

1999—Pub. L. 106–113, § 1000(a)(9) [title I, § 1011(a)(1)], substituted “programming” for “programing” in section catchline.

Subsec. (b). Pub. L. 106–113, § 1000(a)(9) [title I, § 1011(a)(3)], substituted “statutory” for “compulsory”.