Cablevision subs that turned into Game 1 of
the NLCS in certain makets were greeted with
this message yesterday. The dispute with FOX
has already threatened NFL games, and now
Game 2 of the NLCS is in danger.
A dispute between FOX and Cablevision has held sports fans in several markets hostage as FOX pulled content from Cablevision until a resolution is met. The affected channels and markets are FOX 5 (WNYW) in New York and FOX 29 (WTXF) in Philadelphia. Also impacted is My9 (WWOR) in New York (a MyNetworkTV affiliate licensed to Secaucus, NJ) who is also blacked out, but it does not affect MLB or NFL coverage.
(For more on the NFL see Giants-Lions and Eagles-Falcons Caught in Cablevision's Battle with News Corp on The Biz of Football)
Game 1 of the NLCS was the first key sports content to be blacked out over the dispute. Game 2 of the NLCS between the Giants and Phillies is set to air at 8:00 pm ET on FOX.
"News Corp.'s decision to remove Fox programming from 3 million Cablevision households is a black eye for broadcast television in America," Cablevision spokesman Charles Schueler said to The AP on Sat.
A statement by FOX on the dispute laid blame on Cablevision.
"In an effort to avoid this very situation, we started this process in May and made numerous reasonable proposals to Cablevision," said Mike Hopkins, president of Fox Networks Affiliate Sales and Marketing. "However, we remain far apart and Cablevision has made it clear that they do not share our view regarding the value of Fox's networks."
In terms of how this might impact Major League Baseball, according to sources who wished to speak off-record, should any postseason games not be carried, the league would lose no broadcast revenues.
Maury Brown is the Founder and President of the Business of Sports Network, which includes The Biz of Baseball, The Biz of Football, The Biz of Basketball and The Biz of Hockey, as well as a contributor to FanGraphs and Forbes SportsMoney. He is available for hire or freelance. Brown's full bio is here. He looks forward to your comments via email and can be contacted through the Business of Sports Network.
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