MPEG-LA licensing tussle, VIZIO is throwing its weight behind the Coalition to Terminate Financial Abuses of the Television Transmission ("CUT FATT," and no, we're not sure where the "U" came from). Claiming excessive and unregulated patent fees related to FCC regulations for producing DTV-ready sets that have already exceeded a Dr. Evil-esque one-billion dollars, the crux of the argument is that since 2007, US consumers have paid 20-30 times the licensing fees as compared to European and Japanese consumers for "essentially the same technology," and CUT FATT would like to see the FCC rein in these fees to competitive rates. VIZIO is claiming this is an effort to stand behind the American consumer, but we'd like to know how much the company would cut retail prices on its already relatively strong sales. Still, we can't argue with the company's rights to do what it can to seek higher profitability as it balances value and upscale marketing messages.
[Bacon briefcase image courtesy saynotocrack]