Time Warner Cable Hates Dodgers Fans, Tells Them To Switch To Cable Companies They Can’t Get

Baseball season is only days away, and the L.A. Dodgers are fresh off a 94-win division title season. Yet a large number of Dodgers fans can’t watch the games on TV because the cable sports channel owned by the team and Time Warner Cable has yet to reach deals that would let other pay-TV operators in the region carry the station. And TWC’s answer to these fans is mind-bogglingly idiotic.

Fierce Cable’s Daniel Frankel is the latest to try to get a real reading from TWC on the odds that SportsNet L.A. will be made available to anyone in the L.A. area other than TWC customers. He even indicts himself for picking up a recent news item that gave a glimmer of hope to many Dodgers fans that they might see a game on TV this spring.

Frankel notes that TWC is even telling its investors that they should expect the company to continue losing money on the SportsNet L.A. deal for the foreseeable future because the likelihood of reaching a carriage deal with other pay-TV providers is not so great.

But what really drives home TWC’s antipathy toward Dodgers fans is the statement the company provided to Frankel regarding the status of SportsNet L.A. [last sentence bolded for emphasis]:

“We want all Dodger fans to have access to SportsNet LA. Despite our repeated attempts, other providers are unwilling to engage in any discussions. If Dodger fans want to enjoy SportsNet LA this season, we encourage them to switch to a provider that carries the network.

This sentiment — if you want to watch the Dodgers, get a pay-TV provider that carries them — only really applies to current DirecTV and Dish customers, as they may also live in an area serviced by TWC. But a look at the coverage maps for each of the major non-satellite providers in the region tells a very different story.

Here are the individual coverage maps for TWC, Cox, and Charter in the L.A. area:



Notice anything? There’s little to no overlap in coverage between these three sizable cable companies. Here’s what happens when you put the three together:

So all those people in red and blue areas, not to mention the areas not covered by any of these companies? TWC wants you to switch to a non-existent pay-TV provider who both operates in your neighborhood and offers SportsNet L.A.

It’s TWC’s choice if it wants to keep bleeding money on SportsNet L.A., but the company shouldn’t be blaming Dodgers fans who have no choice in who provides cable TV service in their area.

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