SBD/12/Sports Media

SUPREME COURT KEEPS NFL BLACKOUT RULE

     The U.S. Supreme Court ruled to keep the NFL's blackout rule
in place, according to CNBC's Sue Herera.  The Court rejected an
appeal by a group of hearing-impaired fans who say they were
unfairly affected by the rule ("Sports View," CNBC, 12/11).  The
appeal by Thomas Stoutenborough, who is a Browns fan, said he
depends upon TV when the Browns play "because his lack of hearing
rules out radio."  He asked the Court to review his claim that
"home-game TV blackouts discriminate against the disabled."  The
court gave no reason for its ruling, but a lower court had ruled
against Stoutenborough, saying the NFL's rule requiring at TV
blackout of home games not sold out 72 hours before game time is
not a violation of the Americans with Disabilities Act.  The
Court ruled blackouts prevent TV for "everyone, including those
who can hear" (Baltimore SUN, 12/12).
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