There's a secret Cablevision does not want you to know. You pay more than 500 million dollars a year for access to ABC7. Cablevision has been pocketing that money! But now rather than reaching a fair deal, Cablevision is letting subscribers lose ABC7 this weekend.
You Have Choices! Call Cablevision NOW and tell them LOSE MY SHOWS, LOSE MY BUSINESS!
March 3, 2010
In response to Cablevision’s ongoing campaign to mislead their consumers rather than focusing on reaching a fair agreement with ABC7 for retransmission consent, Rebecca S. Campbell, president and general manager, WABC-TV, has released the following statement:
It's time for Cablevision to stop spinning this issue and get serious about doing right by their customers. The fact is that, over and over again, Cablevision picks fights with programmers, and it is Cablevision subscribers who suffer the loss. The inconvenient truth about Cablevision is that it pockets hundreds of millions of dollars in subscriber fees each year by carrying ABC7. Dropping our station would be the latest insult. Their customers should know they have choices: They can switch service now and take their business to a provider that values them and isn't threatening them with the loss of programming every few months, or get us free-over-the-air.
ABC7 urges concerned Cablevision viewers to tell Cablevision Lose my Shows, Lose my Business by calling 1-877-990-ABC7 or visiting www.saveABC7.com
Cablevision claims they want to resolve this issue and not subject their customers to the loss of ABC7. However all of their offers have been designed to be rejected. For two years WABC has been working in good faith to try and reach an agreement that acknowledges the station's value financially and as a key resource to the community. This is value Cablevision already charges their customers up to $18 each month for access to. It is value they further recognize in their own channels such as Sundance, which they charge other cable and satellite operators to carry. It is patently unfair and unsustainable for Cablevision to pay fees to less popular channels and to pay fees to its own channels, while refusing to pay reasonable value to the most watched and most community-involved channel in New York.
WABC-TV, Channel 7, the most watched local television station in the United States, serves more than 7.4 million television households in 29 counties covering New York, New Jersey, Connecticut and Pennsylvania. For more than 60 years, ABC7 has consistently been the leader in local news and local and national entertainment programming.
-- ABC --
And this is Cablevision's version of this dispute:
- ABC's parent company has pulled the plug on WABC-7 and is demanding that Cablevision and its customers pay millions of dollars in new fees. Cablevision has asked ABC to continue delivering WABC-7 while we negotiate, but instead ABC is holding Cablevision customers hostage by pulling its programming.
- It is wrong that ABC pulled the plug on WABC-7 as a negotiating tactic, and we are not alone in this point of view. Over 70 elected officials at the local, state and federal level, including U.S. Senator John Kerry, have urged ABC to return WABC-7 to our viewers while we negotiate a fair agreement.
- Cablevision already pays ABC's parent company more than $200 million per year for its cable channels, including ESPN and ABC Family. Now ABC wants $40 million more in fees for WABC-7, a 20 percent fee increase for exactly the same programming.
- In these difficult and challenging economic times, it is not fair for ABC to force Cablevision and its customers to pay tens of millions of dollars in new fees, what amounts to a new TV tax, for the same programming that is available today for free over the air and on the Internet.
- It is wrong for ABC to demand $40 million in new fees, which is nothing more than a new TV tax, to help pay the salaries and bonuses for top ABC executives.
- We have been able to reach agreements with every other broadcast network, including CBS, NBC, Fox and Univision. We have offered to pay ABC as much, or more than, what we pay these networks. ABC has rejected this offer and every offer we've made thus far.
- While we work to return WABC-7 to the lineup, you can watch WABC-7 free over the air by obtaining a digital TV antenna from your local consumer electronics store.
- Or, you can watch almost all of ABC's prime time programming free on the Internet at hulu.com or abc.com.