From Kelly Riddell of Bloomberg.com...
Cablevision Systems Corp. customers in New York City may lose News Corp.’s Fox broadcast signal, including this weekend’s Giants football telecast, if the two companies fail to agree on a new transmission contract.
Cablevision’s contract to carry WNYW Channel 5 and WWOR 9 in New York, WTXF 9 in Philadelphia, and Fox Business, Nat Geo Wild and Fox Deportes expires at midnight tonight, meaning the channels may go dark for 3 million customers ahead of the New York Giants vs. Detroit Lions football game on Oct. 17.
Broadcasters like Fox are trying to extract fees from pay- TV operators for signals that were once free. Pay-TV operators are resisting the charges, which are typically passed to the customer, arguing the channels are free over the public airwaves and on the Internet. The talks between Cablevision and News Corp. don’t affect Fox News, FX and local sports channels.
Cablevision said News Corp. wants more than $150 million a year in fees for the Fox stations and some cable channels, up from $70 million a year it already pays the media company. Fox said it’s asking for “fair compensation.”