Cable rivals take their feud public

Dec. 19, 2003 at 1:47 PM
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NEW YORK, Dec. 19 (UPI) -- Time Warner Cable and Cablevision, longtime crosstown New York rivals, are feuding via newspaper ads, the Daily Variety reported Friday.

With coverage of popular sporting events in the balance, TWC has taken out newspaper ads claiming that Cablevision is threatening to pull the Madison Square Garden network and Fox Sports New York from the TWC lineup, which would affect 1.3 million cable subcribers. Cablevision controls both channels.

The TWC ads, hoping to incite viewers, say Cablevision is "threatening to take away the Knicks and Rangers from you in January."

TWC's carriage contract with Cablevision for the two sporting networks is up in about a week.

The latest friction comes only a month after the Cablevision-owned AMC movie network filed a $250 million lawsuit against TWC, alleging that TWC was trying to terminate its contract to carry the movie channel despite the fact the deal had five more years to run. Time Warner claims AMC has altered "the general quantity and quality of the programming" by running films produced after 1993.

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