News and views from inside the media bubble | by Karen Phillips
WXII and Time Warner Cable, together again
David Barrett, president and CEO of Hearst Television, has announced on the company’s website on July that they have reached a retransmission agreement with Time Warner Cable, and WXII is now back on the air.
“This process has been an important step to ensure the ongoing vitality of our local television service in communities across the country,” said Barrett.
WXII posted on their website that they are thankful for their viewers’ “patience and understanding” during their time offair and are happy to be back in full swing.
The conflict between Hearst, parent company to WXII News 12, and Time Warner Cable began because Hearst requested a 300 percent rate and Time Warner Cable’ didn’t agree to these terms.
Time Warner Cable spokesman Alex Dudley released a statement arguing that “television networks can’t continue to demand huge price increases and expect us to silently pass those cost increases on to our customers.” Time Warner’s goal was to “stand up for consumers” against outlandish price hikes that serve no purpose “other than to line network pockets at our customers’ expense.”
Barrett, in turn, argued that Hearst’s rate increase request is reasonable based on the increase in costs they have to pay for their quality programming and in comparison to what other television networks are paying them.
“Time Warner is seeking a significant discount of marketbased fees that is neither fair nor reasonable,” Barrett said.