Time Warner Pulls CBS— for 30 Minutes
Stops screening CBS, Showtime after negotiations stall
By Ruth Brown, Newser Staff
Posted Jul 30, 2013 6:34 AM CDT

(Newser) – Bad news for fans of procedural crime dramas: Negotiations between CBS and Time Warner Cable turned so sour last night that the cable network stopped airing CBS and Showtime in major cities. It pulled the plug at midnight Eastern time, following a day of discussions over the retransmission fee Time Warner pays to run CBS' stations—but put the plug back in half an hour later, after apparently agreeing to keep negotiating for a few more days, the New York Times reports. Both sides pointed a finger at the other. "The outrageous demands for fees by CBS Corporation have forced Time Warner Cable to remove several of its networks and broadcast stations from our customers' lineups," TWC wrote in a statement.

CBS, on the other hand, says the move came "in spite of all our efforts to hammer out a fair agreement," and that the cable provider was engaging in "a public campaign of disinformation and voodoo mathematics (featuring wildly inflated percentages) while doggedly restating their positions." TWC says CBS is asking for a 600% fee increase—a figure CBS denies. The deadline for negotiations has now been pushed to Friday, reports CNNMoney, which notes it's at least the 10th extension in the last 30 days. The blackout came as CBS was throwing a party in Beverly Hills to promote its upcoming fall season, the LA Times reports. When CBS CEO Les Moonves was shown TWC's statement, he reportedly declared: "We're at war with Time Warner Cable."

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Jul 31, 2013 6:30 AM CDT
who give a shit?
Jul 31, 2013 2:39 AM CDT
You don't need cable for network feeds. You can just get Aereo. They have so far held up to court case scrutiny and it will go all the way to Scotus. I don't have any paid service except Netflix. That's because they carry some of my old favs. But that's all I pay for. I hate dish and cable and will only sign up with them again if they offer Ala-carte services. I don't like paying for Telemundo or Al Jazeer. Let me pick the 30 channels I would like to see and I'll sign up again. But in 2014, the game changes again. What would you do if your network station was no longer on the air? Could that happen mid 2014? YES, it will. Back when the stations went to digital tv standards, many of them chose to go from VHF frequencies up to UHF. It was to improve coverage and capacity. You can always do more effectively at higher frequencies. So what happens in 2014? Well, the F.C.C. auctions off those UHF tv frequencies. ALL OF THEM. What happens to those stations. Well, in smaller cities such as Phoenix they can just move back down to VHF channels. It means nothing for you in that situation as you just "rescan" your DTV receiver. It finds the new assignment and in your box, nothing changes. They can still even be the same virtual channel # on the PSIP. So what about Chicago, Dallas, Miami, NYC, LA? Not so easy poindexter. There may not be enough open VHF channels for the stations to move back down. So their only option in that situation is to shut down the transmitter. So how will you get that station after that? Well, you will have to subscribe to Dish, Direct, cable, U-verse, or the likes. What do stations get in return for having to loose their OTR service? Each station can possibly recover between $1 million to $5 million dollars. For station groups like ION, that means a cash windfall of up to $100M. OMG I can imagine Brandon Burgess buying another corporate jet, NYC apartment, and his sixth European vacation home.
Jul 31, 2013 12:50 AM CDT
They should be embarassed at the crap cable companies put on their line up. They should pay the customers to watch their garbage. So much is cut out of an hour show to make room for the endless commercials many shows make no sense to watch.