CBS, Time Warner Cable reach deal on blackout - The Buffalo News

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CBS, Time Warner Cable reach deal on blackout

NEW YORK – CBS Corp. is coming back to Time Warner Cable Inc. viewers in New York, Los Angeles and Dallas after the companies reached an agreement, ending a one-month blackout of shows like “60 Minutes” and “Under the Dome.”

The companies didn’t say how much Time Warner Cable will pay CBS for the right to air its affiliates’ programming in the three cities.

The agreement also includes Showtime Anytime and video-on-demand for stations in those three cities, according to a statement Monday.

The deal comes less than a week before the start of the National Football League’s regular season on CBS. More than 3 million viewers have lived without access to sports events, including golf’s PGA Championship and early rounds of the U.S. Open tennis tournament, during the blackout.

Time Warner Cable had said CBS asked for prices that were 600 percent higher than other affiliates receive for the same programming.

The U.S. Federal Communications Commission said last week it was working with top executives at both companies to resolve the dispute.

CBS is the highest-rated broadcast channel, ahead of Comcast Corp.’s NBC, Walt Disney Co.’s ABC and 21st Century Fox Inc.’s Fox.

Time Warner Cable shut off CBS in the three markets Aug. 2 and blacked out other networks it owns – Showtime, TMC, Flix and Smithsonian – across the country. The blackout followed weeks of negotiations and extended deadlines.

Time Warner Cable, based in New York, also had threatened to remove CBS from its prominent position at Channel 2 in New York and L.A. even if a deal was struck. The cable provider aired the Starz Kids & Family network in its place for the majority of the blackout.

The public disagreement focused on retransmission fees, which have become a frequent sticking point in negotiations between pay-TV providers and broadcasters.

Last quarter, CBS reported an 18 percent gain from a year earlier in affiliate and subscription revenue, which includes retransmission fees. It didn’t specify how much retransmission fees grew alone. In the previous quarter, retransmission revenue had jumped 62 percent.

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