While Time Warner subscribers are still waiting to learn whether or not they’re going to be watching American Idol this year, Cablevision subscribers found themselves without The Food Network and HGTV today.
Happy New Year, TV watchers! If you’re among the 3.1 million Cablevision subscribers out there, you may have already noticed that you no longer get The Food Network or HGTV. Both channels, owned by Scripps, were deauthorized by the company as of last night (December 31st) at midnight, due to the company and Cablebvisions inability to come to an agreement in a dispute similar to what Fox and Time Warner are going through. This, according to the Wall Street Journal.
"The distribution rates Cablevision pays for Food and HGTV are among the lowest in the industry," said Scripps Chief Executive Kenneth Lowe.
Considering the growing popularity of The Food Network, it’s likely that there will be plenty of Food Network fans (and HGTV fans) out there who are disappointed about losing the channels. If you’re among them, before you start shopping around for other providers, Ilovefoodnetwork.com is running a call-in/ecard campaign to get cablevision to keep The Food Network and HGTV. Fans can send in ecards or call in and hopefully cablevision will work something out with Scripps to get the channels back.
As for Time Warner subscribers, Fox ended up extending the deadline on Time Warner’s decision and there hasn’t been word on whether the cable company and the network have worked things out yet.
I’m having a hard time knowing what to think about all of this, to be honest. On one hand, as a fan of Fox’s shows as well as The Food Network’s, I think they deserve a fair fee for what they offer to the cable companies’ subscribers. On the other hand, I fear that these negotiations will result in the cable company’s charging subscribers more money to compensate for whatever increase the networks are demanding. Given what I already pay for my cable service, the idea of shelling out even more money isn’t exactly appealing.