Ovation, the arts-culture cable channel that's enjoyed a distribution surge the last several years, said Tuesday it expects to be dropped by Time Warner Cable on Dec. 31, potentially losing about 7 million subscribers and the key markets of New York City and Los Angeles.
The independently owned network, reaching 51 million homes via cable, satellite and telco providers, went public about the expected drop in hopes of gaining support from viewers and arts organizations that would persuade Time Warner Cable to rethink the decision. "If Time Warner Cable proceeds then, in 2013, its customers who love the arts will miss out on our enlightening and entertaining shows like Song by Song and A Chance to Dance, brand-new original series, an increased number of co-productions and an extensive VOD and TVE offering of incremental and exclusive content covering all arts genres," Robert Weiss, the network's newly hired chief creative officer, said in a release. "At least they can watch Battle of the Nutcrackers through the holiday."
Brad Samuels, the channel's EVP of content distribution, said in the release: "Time Warner Cable's main rationale for dropping Ovation is economics and the growing cost of programming. While they are investing huge amounts in sports programming, they've chosen to limit their customers' viewing options by cutting the only arts network in their lineup. Ovation believes this decision was ill-conceived. For pennies a month, TWC can continue to offer its customers the only network dedicated to the arts and continue to take part in vital arts and arts education programs for the communities they serve. Ultimately, we hope that Time Warner Cable will see the value our other Affiliate partners see in Ovation and will reconsider their decision."