Wednesday, October 01, 2008

KXAN holds 48% of viewers hostage

Unless a last-minute agreement emerges, those of us who have Time Warner Cable in Austin will have to do without NBC beginning at midnight Thursday because KXAN wants to squeeze more money for retransmission of their free, over-the-air broadcast TV signal from Time Warner.

When KXAN pulled this stunt with Suddenlink last year, that cable company substituted the NBC affiliate from Temple in place of KXAN. The station now has an exclusive transmission agreement in place with NBC, so that’s no longer a possibility.

I don't care about missing KXAN’s sensationalist local newscasts and I can watch most of the NBC shows I like online. While some folks might drop Time Warner Cable to switch to another cable company like AT&T or Grande, that’s not an option in our demographically-challenged nape of town. I’m not crazy about going the satellite route, either.

I'm no fan of Time Warner, but I'm even less of a fan of broadcasters licensed to serve the public interest pulling cockamamie extortion schemes. No matter how you slice it, KXAN stands to enter November sweeps with far fewer eyeballs than it has right now. Some 48 percent of KXAN’s viewers watch them on Time Warner Cable.

If I were one of the station’s advertisers, I’d be pissed. And if I were one of the station’s sales reps, I’d be scared.


Anonymous said...

I'm living in the "Woo" and I switched to Directv 3 years ago and have never looked back. I heard all the satellite horror stories and have not found one of them to be true. I get better service at a much cheaper rate than I ever did with Time Warner. They'll never have my business again.

Anonymous said...

Today is Oct. 30th so I have been without NBC for a full month and didn't even notice until about 2 days ago. I guess that means I can live without NBC. I was actually on a KXAN news story about the long lines for early voting and that's when I realized that I couldn't watch the darned news on TV. Oh well, I saw it on their website the next day. I'm too lazy to go through the hassle of canceling TW and ordering Directv and reprogramming my universal remote.