Who shall blink…

Saturday, October 16, 2010

Who shall blink…

...in the current stand-off between our friends at Cablevision and the "greedy" (to hear the Dolans tell it) media moguls at News Corp?

For those who haven't caught up with it yet, Channels 5/705 (Fox) and 9/709 (My9) became los desaparecidos on the local cable system at 12:01 am today.

Who's right and who's wrong?

Who knows... both sides are surely at fault since the impasse has been on-going for some time now, and ultimately it will cost cable subscribers an increase in their monthly fees.

But one thing is certain: there's going to be substantial anger by sports fans at their inability to see this evening's National League Championship Series between the Philadelphia Phillies and the San Francisco Giants!

(If Fox, instead of TBS, had the broadcast rights to today's game two between the Texas Rangers and the Yankees, things would be really messy by now!)

Where it will get ugly is if the matter hasn't been resolved by tomorrow afternoon's kick-off the National Football League contest between the New York Giants and Detroit Lions [sigh].

Some may recall that in March of this year, there was a similar stand-off between Cablevision and ABC/Disney which cost viewers the opening 13 minutes of the Academy Awards telecast.


1. Michael Jacobs said...

Two giant, super wealthy conglomerates engaging in a pissing match... except there's million of dollars in the balalce. Our electeds (golly, aren't they wonderful!) are making the right kind of noise but binding arbitration is apparently out the window... and the losers are us. BTW... no safety in switching to Dish 'cause the same thing is brewing and only a few weeks off.

Guess I'll find a friendly sports bar with a provider other than Cablevision to see the Giants. Gonna have to miss what is possibly the pitching match up of the season tonight though.

It was, it was! Halladay pitched the better game but Lincecum beat him. 4-3.

2. Ray Overton said...

At this point, thank you for Direct TV. I have to laugh whenever the Dolans call someone else greedy – Newsday at a $1 daily?


And it, by its very nature, is a one-way battle at this point. The Dolans, who (dangerously) control a disproportionate amount of the information which reaches Long Islanders, can fashion the "debate" however they like because they control the biggest daily newspaper on the Island and for all intents and purposes all of the television sets... what sort of "reach" do FiOS and Direct TV have, particularly on the East End? How then is NewsCorp to get their side out? The NY Post? Most of its audience moves its lips when they read the comics page!

Tough to fight this sort of battle when the other guy controls all the information. And the regulatory agency is a repository of political hacks who lost their last election, so they're useless.

Get ready for a rate hike which the Dolams will blame on Rupert Murdock.

3. Hambone said...

Though it is a reach there is a third villain in the mix. MLB received funds for the right for Fox to broadcast the games. One would think MLB would have some sort of clause in the deal that states "in purchasing the rights you also asserting that you have the contracts in place throughout the viewing areas to make certain the viewers can actually see it." MLB will not receive the ratings share it wants if a major market is staring at a blank screen. Yet MLB is not barking now is it? (I'd have to assume once they have the cash the bulk of their objective is met. This is the year Selig and company moved games to reasonable hours so more children can see the game and consequently we don't lose the next generation of viewers.

And MLB is silent.

A not unreasonable assumption is that Fox will now be obliged to rebate certain revenues to advertisers who paid rates based on their commercial messages being delivered to Cablevision customers on Long Island and in Connecticut.

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