Time Warner Cable and Al Jazeera America have struck a carriage agreement and the 24-hour news network will roll out on digital basic in TWC and Bright House systems over the next six months.
Al Jazeera Media struck a deal back in January to buy Current TV and remake it into a 24-hour news network, which launched in August. After the sale, Time Warner Cable did not extend its Current agreement to the new channel. After the conversion occurred and the startup news channel launched, TWC said it was continuing to talk with AJAM and was seriously considering carrying the channel. The channel should be on in New York City and Los Angeles by the end of the year and elsewhere by March, a Time Warner Cable spokesperson said.
Terms were not disclosed but the deal puts the channel in about 55 million homes, according to the companies.
"We said in January that we would consider Al Jazeera America. Now that the channel is live, we think that it would be of value to our customers and are pleased to make it available," Melinda Witmer, executive vice president, chief video and content officer for Time Warner Cable, said in a release.
Ehab Al Shihabi, Al Jazeera America's interim CEO, said in the release: "It has been a pleasure working with TWC over the past few months as their executives evaluated our programming and commitment to fact-based, in depth reporting. We appreciate the vote of confidence that Time Warner Cable and Bright House Networks have given to our brand of unbiased journalism and look forward to working with them as Al Jazeera America continues to grow."
TWC, which also buys programming for Bright House Networks, also recently decided to reinstate Ovation TV after dropping the arts-focused channel in January. (Pictured: Al Jazeera America studio with news anchor Jonathan Betz.)
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Contributing editor John Eggerton has been an editor and/or writer on media regulation, legislation and policy for over four decades, including covering the FCC, FTC, Congress, the major media trade associations, and the federal courts. In addition to Multichannel News and Broadcasting + Cable, his work has appeared in Radio World, TV Technology, TV Fax, This Week in Consumer Electronics, Variety and the Encyclopedia Britannica.
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