Aug 3 In an unusual show of solidarity between
rivals, satellite TV provider DirecTV issued a statement
on Saturday applauding Time Warner Cable's decision to
drop CBS programming from its lineup in the nation's two
largest markets after the two failed to reach an agreement over
The blackout on Friday by Time Warner of CBS, the No.
1-rated U.S. broadcast network, followed weeks of protracted and
acrimonious negotiations between the two companies.
CBS retaliated on Friday by suspending videos of full
episodes of its programming on CBS.com for customers with
Internet access provided by Time Warner Cable in the affected
markets, a move that affects DirecTV customers.
"DirecTV has certainly had its share of these battles, so we
applaud Time Warner Cable for fighting back against exorbitant
programming cost increases," the company said in a statement.
"We are also appalled to learn that CBS is now punishing
DIRECTV customers, who may happen to have Time Warner as their
Internet provider, by denying them access to CBS content
online," the company said, saying the efforts of content
companies to extract "outrageous fees" from distributors may
have reached "a new low."
DirecTV had its own blackout last summer in which 20 million
customers lost access to Viacom channels such as MTV and
Nickelodeon for 10 days.
CBS is home to such hits as "The Big Bang Theory" and "NCIS"
and is seen by an estimated 3.5 million customers in the
affected markets, which include New York, Los Angeles and
A source familiar with the CBS negotiating strategy told
Reuters on Friday the company had offered to extend current
terms and keep negotiating in the coming days, adding that no
new talks between the sides are scheduled.