Time Warner Cable Would Consider Patriots-Giants Freeview
Britt: 'Best and Fastest' Way to Get NFL Game to Wider Audience -- Move It to Broadcast Network
By John Eggerton -- Broadcasting & Cable, 12/13/2007 2:02:00 PM
Time Warner Cable told Sen. John Kerry (D-Mass.) it is willing to consider offering the New England Patriots at New York Giants National Football League game as a digital "freeview" on its systems, but it added that the "best and fastest" way for the game to get to the widest audience would be for the NFL to move it off its NFL Network and onto a national broadcast network.
Kerry anticipates that the Dec. 29 game could be the Patriots' historic capping of an undefeated season, and he wrote Time Warner, Comcast and the NFL asking them to meet with him next week and try to figure out a way to let more people see the game.
Time Warner, the nation's second-largest cable operator, does not carry the network, while Comcast has it on a separate sports tier.
In a letter responding to Kerry's call earlier in the week for a meeting, Time Warner president Glenn Britt said he agreed with Kerry that the game was a unique situation and that the widest distribution was best, but he added that the broadcast solution was also best because even if every cable operator could "work out the thicket of rights issues" necessary to offer the game on their basic tiers, that would still leave those who get their TV over the air without access to the game except in the local markets of the two teams.
Britt pointed to a B&C Web item on the NFL's position that it was not interested in a one-time fix and said it showed that the league was putting its interests before the public's.
But, he added, "If the NFL is unwilling to make the Patriots-Giants game available through a broadcast network, Time Warner stands ready" to try to make the freeview happen, as it did with last year's Texas Bowl in some markets.
Britt seconded Comcast in saying that there didn't seem much point in that meeting given that the "broadcast solution" would be between the NFL and broadcasters, but he said he was ready to discuss it further.
Comcast Wednesday told Kerry that it already has a carriage deal for its sports tier and it could not meet with the senator due to scheduling issues.
"Our commissioner is scheduled to meet with Kerry, we've cleared our schedule. We're willing to negotiate, "NFL spokesman Seth Palansky told B&C. "Our position hasn't changed. We want to resolve this."
But Palansky said that putting the game on broadcast TV was "not an option," and that "everyone understands it is not an option."
"Were not surprised Time Warner is not willing to negotiate," he said, "because it has not engaged in serious negotiations with us in four and a half years."
You don't have to give up roadrunner to go with DirecTV. I went with Time Warner for RoadRunner high speed, but coundn't stand cable tv, so I switched back to DirecTV after 3 months. I have to pay an extra $10 bucks a month for my RoadRunner high speed, but having DirecTV HD service is well worth the extra $10.
Rick Shaw - 12/24/2007 11:14:00 AM EST
Palansky you are an idiot,you say that maine is not part of NEW ENGLAND since when? Since I can remember maine has always been part of new england there is no reason why we as maine and new england residents can't have axcess to the game as a local station. People like you make it hard for the working man.Its all about money with you and the nfl and thats wrong.Pats fans every where should be outraged wheather you get the game or not
Dale - 12/20/2007 7:49:00 AM EST
I am a student and harder worker in h/s. I am in low budget family enjoy sports as much as I can watcht them. It makes me mad I can not see the patriots game where they will make history. I got tosee the red soxs win the world series why cant I see the patriots make history? I am not old enought to go to a bar to watch the game so I am basically out of luck and will have to watch the news late at night to see who won. It is a shame I will not be able to watch.
randy libby - 12/17/2007 9:28:00 PM EST
I would like the NFL chanle in my package but if I dont get the pats game on dec 23 I will leave time Time
warner and go to Dish or Dircet, I do like my cable company but I agree with the NFL It should be included in a package, I'v already looked into Dish @Dircet tv. I am a Big NFL PATS fan and I am will to givr up cable, and roadrunner to get away from time waner, so I can watch the games on NFL NET WORK
thankyou Burt Babbidge
Burt Babbbidge - 12/14/2007 11:00:00 AM EST
Palansky, You are an idiot and you just dug the NFL's grave on being a bad guy. If you would actually consider keeping this game of historical nature out poor NFL fans who only have maybe a small 12 inch black and white t.v. set that only have what is available through the use of antenna you my friend are the biggest jerk known to man. You do not deserve to live in this great country. Why would you do that, there are tons of poor people out there that watch the NFl games every Sunday that can not afford cable or sat. YOU ARE A JERK!!!!!!!!!!!!
chris - 12/13/2007 8:12:00 PM EST
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