A spat between the nation’s largest cable company and Major League Baseball’s most storied franchise is getting ugly, with the New York Yankees’ YES Network launching a campaign urging fans to “Drop Comcast.” [More]
Last spring, Verizon FiOS rejiggered its pay-TV slate into so-called “skinny bundles,” where customers pay for a small core base of channels and then add on smaller, niche-targeted bundles of channels as they please. The change resulted in a very public spat Disney, but the folks at Charter think it’s a good enough idea to consider. [More]
In a nice change for consumers, a content company and a distribution company managed to save everyone the rigamarole of a blackout and a finger-pointing yell-a-thon when they instead settled their differences and negotiated a new contract hours after the old one expired.
Those following the merger of Comcast with Time Warner Cable and AT&T’s acquisition of DirecTV may remember that the FCC had hoped to make some of the cable companies’ confidential contract information available to parties with a direct interest in these deals. In November, a federal appeals court preliminarily sided with the broadcasters and temporarily blocked the FCC from sharing this info, and this morning the court heard arguments from both sides on whether or not these contracts should be kept under lock and key for good. [More]
Because pay-TV providers and content networks can’t negotiate anything without resorting to blackouts to try to prove who has the bigger dishes, the contract stalemate between Turner Broadcasting and Dish Network has left millions of satellite customers without a large slate of popular channels, including CNN, HLN, truTV and — most importantly — Cartoon Network. [More]
Three months after a standoff over fees left 20 million DirecTV customers without The Weather Channel, the station is making a return to the satellite service. But in order to get that large audience back, the Weather folks have had to agree to some changes in its programming, which some had criticized as being too focused on things other than just telling people about the weather. [More]
Amazon is already a major player in the streaming video rental and subscription business, competing against iTunes, Zune, Google Play, Redbox, and Netflix. But does the e-tail giant have its eyes on more-established competitors? A new report claims that Amazon is looking to create its own live pay TV service that would pit the company against cable operators. [More]
Six full days into Time Warner Cable’s blackout of CBS in several major markets and Showtime nationwide and neither side is willing to admit that all this screaming and yelling is really just hurting the customers, who are hiding in the bedroom with their ear against the door waiting for it all to end. [More]
Since Friday afternoon, Time Warner Cable customers in New York, L.A., Dallas, and other markets have had to go without CBS, while all TWC subscribers are having to ask their friends what happened on Dexter last night because that premium network is blacked out nationwide. Meanwhile, both sides of the fight are attempting to win over public sentiment. But don’t be fooled — they both hate consumers very, very much. [More]
Days after only briefly pulling the plug on CBS in New York, L.A., and a handful of other markets and nationwide access to Showtime, Time Warner Cable has gone and done the deed for real this afternoon, as negotiations between the two parties failed to reach a happy ending by today’s 5 p.m. ET deadline. [More]
UPDATE 2: About 30 minutes after first pulling the plug on a number of CBS stations around the country, Time Warner Cable plugged them back in. The company now says it has extended the deadline to Friday Aug. 2 at 5 p.m. ET. Given that this deadline was originally June 30 and has been extended approximately 832 times (give or take), don’t expect that new drop-dead date/time to be carved in stone either. [More]
If you’re one of the millions of Time Warner Cable customers in cities like New York, L.A., and Dallas, who also happens to like such fine CBS fare as Big Bang Theory and Big Brother, you can start the blackout countdown clock now. The broadcaster says it might turn off its signal for TWC customers if it doesn’t have a new contract with the cable company by 5 p.m. on July 24. [More]
Among the biggest bones of contention in the now-frequent carriage fee disputes between broadcasters and cable/satellite companies is broadcasters’ insistence that carriers buy an entire bundle of channels just to get the one or two networks people actually watch. Today, Cablevision declared “Enough!” and filed suit against Viacom. [More]
You are all familiar with the now-common vitriolic disputes between cable/satellite providers and broadcasters every time a contract comes up for renewal. Most of these fights end with both sides shaking hands and smiling — because it’s the consumer who gets screwed in the end. [More]
Time Warner Cable CEO Glenn Britt has made no secret of his distaste for the bundles of channels his and other cable companies are forced to accept in order to carry the few channels that customers actually watch. Now, says Britt, it’s time to actually do something about it. [More]
It’s been a week since DirecTV and Viacom’s contract dispute resulted in nearly 20 million satellite customers staring at blank screens instead of MTV, Comedy Central, Vh1, Nickelodeon and several other Viacom-owned stations. Now the broadcaster is telling viewers not to get their hopes up for a quick resolution.
For DirecTV subscribers, the ongoing Viacom blackout means it’s been nearly a week since they’ve been able to watch MTV, Comedy Central, Vh1, or Nickelodeon — at least without going to the neighbor’s house. In a move to win viewers over to its side of the battle, Viacom has decided that maybe it wasn’t such a good idea to remove those full episodes of The Daily Show and The Colbert Report from the Comedy Central website.
We’re now a few days into the fight between Viacom and DirecTV that has left nearly 20 million of the satellite service’s customers without 26 channels, including MTV, Nickelodeon, and Comedy Central. And while the two parties are reportedly trying to hammer out a resolution, Viacom’s Twitter account is only stoking the anti-DirecTV fires.