Happy New Year TV fans! As if not having the NFL Network is bad enough, Time Warner Cable may be taking away other top shows and networks.
According to the AP:
Nickelodeon, MTV, Comedy Central and 16 other channels will go dark on Time Warner Cable Inc. at 12:01 a.m. Thursday if a new carriage fee deal is not agreed upon by then.
The impasse over carriage fee hikes would mean "SpongeBob" and other popular shows like Jon Stewart's "The Daily Show" and Stephen Colbert's "The Colbert Report" will be cut off to 13 million subscribers, said spokesman Alex Dudley, a vice president at Time Warner Cable. The nation's second-largest cable operator primarily serves customers in New York state, the Carolinas, Ohio, Southern California and Texas.
Viacom has asked for fee increases of between 22 percent and 36 percent per channel, an amount that could increase customers' cable bills, Dudley said. Viacom spokeswoman Kelly McAndrew said the requested increase was in the very low double-digit percentage range.
Viacom said the increases would cost an extra 23 cents a month per subscriber — which works out to $35.9 million more in total. It said that Americans spend a fifth of their TV time watching Viacom shows but its fees make up less than 2.5 percent of the Time Warner cable bill.
"We make this request because Time Warner Cable has so greatly undervalued our channels for so long," it said.
"Ultimately, however, if Nickelodeon, Comedy Central, MTV and the rest of our programming is discontinued — over less than a penny per day — we believe viewers will see this behavior by their cable company as outrageous," it said.
Tense negotiations are continuing at the highest level, Dudley said.
Viacom accused Time Warner Cable of not negotiating.
"It is our sincere hope that they will come to the table and negotiate a deal," said McAndrew. The network operator also intends to tell viewers about the dispute in TV ads in 11 major markets.
Part of the disagreement is that most of the popular shows are rerun on Web sites where Viacom collects advertising revenue that it does not share with Time Warner, Dudley said.
This is not good news. Both come off as greedy, regardless of one cent or whatever, not during these times should you be trying to do this.-Dr.FB