Bluefield Daily Telegraph, Bluefield, WV

Local News

January 3, 2013

Suddenlink may lose some of the Fox channels

Suddenlink customers may lose some Fox-owned channels, such as FX and Speed, if a new agreement isn’t reached by the end of the night.

News Corp, also known as Fox Networks, is demanding a 25 percent increase in payment for 2013, as well as additional money in the following years.

The contract was initially set to expire at 5 p.m. Wednesday, but Fox extended the deadline for negotiations through 11:59 p.m. today.

“We continue to negotiate with them in good faith and are making progress toward an agreement,” said Gene Regan, Suddenlink director of corporate communications.

“This agreement does not affect Fox News Channel or Fox Business; those networks are a part of a separate, longer-term contract.”

Channels involved in the negotiations are FX, Speed, Fox Regional Sports, Fox Movie Channel, Nat Geo, Nat Geo Wild, Fuel, Fox Sports Plus, Fox Soccer Channel, Fox College Sports, and Fox Deportes.

“Importantly, if we need more time to work out that new agreement, we’ll ask News Corp to keep their channels on our lineup. Any decisions to remove these channels from Suddenlink’s lineup will be made by News Corp, not by Suddenlink.”

According to suddenlinkonyourside.com, Suddenlink customers pay well over $50 million a year for News Corp channels.

“In the end, we’re happy to pay a fair price for these channels, but a nearly 25 percent increase, which is what News Corp Fox is demanding, is excessive by any measure.”

If Fox does remove the channels, the total per-month credit for the Beckley area will be $1.52.

“This credit would be applied retroactively and prorated for the number of days the affected channels were not available.”

Suddenlink offers television, Internet, phone, security and other services to more than 220,000 households and 9,500 businesses in West Virginia, making it the largest cable broadband company in the state.

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