World Series in TV blackout spat

October 28, 2010

Source- BBC News:A dispute between US cable TV firm Cablevision and pay-TV outfit Fox may deprive Cablevision’s customers of coverage of baseball’s World Series.

The firms disagree on how much New York-based Cablevision should pay to carry Fox, which owns the baseball final rights, on its cable network.

With the World Series just hours away, Cablevision made a new offer to Fox.

However Fox declined, calling the offer “incomplete”. Fox has now been off-air to Cablevision viewers for 11 days.

In its latest offer Cablevision, which has three million subscribers, said it was willing to pay the same rate as rival Time Warner Cable in a one-year deal.

“This is higher than the rate we pay any other New York broadcast station,” Cablevision said in a statement. “This solution is in the best interest of not only baseball fans but of all Cablevision customers and Fox viewers.”

But Fox responded in a statement: “We remain committed to negotiating a fair deal with Cablevision, but today’s incomplete proposal is not acceptable. Cablevision is seeking a discounted ‘package rate’ without buying the entire package.”

The 106th World Series will see the San Francisco Giants take on the Texas Rangers.

On Tuesday, James Dolan, boss of Cablevision, had written to the Federal Communications Commission (FCC), urging it to call a meeting between the two firms in an attempt to find a solution before the World Series begins.

But a Fox Network spokesman called Mr Dolan’s letter to the FCC a publicity stunt.

The best-of-seven MLB final brings together two teams who have not been known for recent successes.

The Giants have not won the championship since 1954, four years before moving from New York to San Francisco.

Meanwhile the Rangers are in the first World Series in their history.