The Cablevision Systems Corp.-Yankees Entertainment & Sports Network carriage war has taken some heat off ESPN.
Lately, there's been less dishing about ESPN's own pricing.
But ESPN president George Bodenheimer broached the subject himself last week,
saying simply: "We are worth what we charge."
Already the priciest cable network, at an average of 72 cents per subscriber, ESPN plans to
up its fees by as much as 20 percent.
Under current contracts, though, that's what "the operators agreed to pay
us," he said.
So for now, operators can only grit their teeth and pay up.
But, as one major MSO executive warned: "The contracts won't last forever."