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TWC, LIN Negotiations ‘Down to the Wire’

LIN Television and Time Warner Cable are racing against the clock to avoid having the signals for 15 LIN stations go dark at midnight tonight. The two parties have been sparring for weeks over retransmission consent fees, as the contract for Time Warner to carry the 15 stations, including WISH Indianapolis and KXAN Austin, expires end of day.

“The clock is ticking, but we’re still negotiating,” says a Time Warner Cable spokesperson. “It will come right down to the wire.”

The TWC spokesperson said there was an outside chance the parties might agree on extending the deadline before a shutoff occurred.

A LIN spokesperson confirmed that talks were going on: “We’re still negotiating, but there’s no deal yet.”

Other potentially affected markets include Green Bay, Mobile, Terre Haute and Toledo. The KXAN Website, for one, blasts Time Warner for not paying “fair market value” for the station signal and implores viewers to “Know the Facts” about the TWC-LIN row.

LIN has agreed to terms regarding retransmission consent with DirecTV and Charter Communications, and TWC represents the last of the broadcaster’s big retrans hurdles for the near term. LIN President/CEO Vince Sadusky was not available for comment, but was optimistic a few weeks back that a deal would be struck without viewers losing their local programming. “I can’t imagine we can’t come to terms with these guys,” he said in mid-September.