NEW YORK Time Warner Cable and Sinclair Broadcast Group Inc have yet to renew a carriage agreement ahead of an end-of-year deadline, but the second largest U.S. cable operator agreed to carry the four broadcast networks despite the dispute.
The cable operator's move to carry the networks, NBC, FOX, CBS and ABC, is a new wrinkle in disputes between distributors such as Comcast and Time Warner Cable and media companies such as News Corp during a period when regulators have scrutinized these disputes.
Time Warner Cable is continuing to negotiate for a long-term agreement with Sinclair Broadcasting, it said in a statement late on Thursday.
Sinclair on Tuesday said Time Warner Cable rejected its proposal asking for a monthly increase of 10 cents per subscriber and declined to provide a counter-offer.
In the event of a blackout, about 4 million subscribers would be affected, Time Warner Cable said earlier on Thursday.
Cable companies pay broadcasters like Sinclair to run their local stations on their cable networks, and negotiations over the fees sometimes result in these kinds of disputes.
Cablevision Systems Corp lost News Corp's Fox stations for 15 days in October before reaching a new agreement.
(Reporting by Elinor Comlay; Editing by Derek Caney)