Skip to main content

California Dealing for Fox, Time Warner

Fox Sports Net West and Time Warner Cable reached an agreement Monday
allowing the network to distribute Los Angeles Dodgers and California Angels
Major League Baseball games to 350,000 Los Angeles-area MSO subscribers.

Terms of the deal were not disclosed. It also wasn't clear whether the
agreement extends into next year.

Fox Sports pulled 40 Dodgers and 20 Angels games in June after Time Warner
refused to pay a 1-cent surcharge increase the network levied to pay for the
games. Time Warner will carry the six Dodgers and five Angels games through Oct.
7 -- the end of the regular season -- at no additional cost to subscribers.

'Time Warner is pleased to join with Fox in announcing the return of the
Dodgers and Angels on Fox Sports Cable Networks to Time Warner Cable
subscribers,' Time Warner Cable Los Angeles division president Tom Feige said in
a prepared statement.

Prior to the deal, the two sides waged a very public war of words regarding
the contract dispute.

During the early weeks after the programming blackouts began, FSN tapped
radio broadcasts with ads and bought space in the Los Angeles Times,
TheOrange County Register and the Los Angeles Daily News
to air its side of the conflict.

On-screen crawls during nonbaseball programming also urged consumers to
contact the operator and complain about the blackout.

DirecTV Inc., which carried the disputed games, conducted an aggressive
acquisition campaign in the market in an attempt to lure Time Warner
subscribers.

The MSO countered with a 'less aggressive' campaign that uses cross-channel
spots to explain its business decision.

R. Thomas Umstead serves as senior content producer, programming for Multichannel News, Broadcasting + Cable and Next TV. During his more than 30-year career as a print and online journalist, Umstead has written articles on a variety of subjects ranging from TV technology, marketing and sports production to content distribution and development. He has provided expert commentary on television issues and trends for such TV, print, radio and streaming outlets as Fox News, CNBC, the Today show, USA Today, The New York Times and National Public Radio. Umstead has also filmed, produced and edited more than 100 original video interviews, profiles and news reports featuring key cable television executives as well as entertainers and celebrity personalities.