NYC Viewers Get ABC Back as Oscars Begin

Disney-Cablevision dispute caused 3.1M to lose telecast
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted Mar 7, 2010 9:31 PM CST
NYC Viewers Get ABC Back as Oscars Begin
Cablevision CEO James Dolan at a news conference in New York, Jan. 11, 2006. In a dispute with Disney, Cablevision pulled the plug on 3.1 million customers today, restoring service before the Oscars.   (KATHY WILLENS)

The TV signal was switched back on for Cablevision's 3.1 million subscribers in the New York area shortly after tonight's Academy Awards telecast got under way. Channel 7, the local ABC affiliate, returned at 8:43 pm, 13 minutes into the show. A Cablevision spokesman said a deal was reached in a dispute over millions of dollars in fees that had led ABC's parent company, the Walt Disney Co., to pull its programming from the cable operator's subscribers at midnight Saturday.

The companies had been bickering about how much Disney was paid by Cablevision for the right to transmit the ABC signal to cable subscribers. The spokesman declined to disclose the details of the deal. Disney CEO Bob Iger was seen in the Oscar audience, about a minute after Cablevision announced it had reached a deal to get the telecast on the air. (Read more Academy Awards stories.)

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