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View Full Version : The N.F.L. Loses a Cable Ruling


Kaiser Toro
05-11-2007, 09:05 AM
http://www.nytimes.com/2007/05/11/sports/football/11cable.html?ex=1336536000&en=7e51a716640506a7&ei=5088&partner=rssnyt&emc=rss

snippet:
A Manhattan Supreme Court justice ruled yesterday that Comcast, the nation’s largest cable operator, can carry the NFL Network on a digital sports tier. The decision could roil the channel’s goal to be carried on the levels of digital distribution that would give it the greatest number of subscribers.

The National Football League sued Comcast last year over its plan to put the network on a sports tier on systems recently acquired from Time Warner. Comcast carries the channel on the rest of its systems to about 8 million subscribers on its second-biggest digital tier. Its sports tier is available to about a million homes.

Making the NFL Network available only to those paying about $5 extra monthly for the sports tier would greatly impede its availability.

“The final word on this issue is most likely to come from the appellate courts,” said Seth Palansky, a network spokesman.

nunusguy
05-11-2007, 09:18 AM
http://www.nytimes.com/2007/05/11/sports/football/11cable.html?ex=1336536000&en=7e51a716640506a7&ei=5088&partner=rssnyt&emc=rss

“The final word on this issue is most likely to come from the appellate courts,” said Seth Palansky, a network spokesman.

And that will be how many years ? Then the loser in the appellate ruling appeals to the SC, right ?
I dunno, but I'm probably gonna have to switch to SAT from TWC to get the NFL Network anytime soon.
Anybody heard anything about U-Verse, an AT&T product ? They reportedly offer the NFL Network.

Porky
05-11-2007, 10:05 AM
I think thats a good decision. It is a sports channel after all. I just don't think a network should be able to dictate to a cable company how they are going to market or distribute a channel.

It doesn't bug me either though. I've had DirectTV almost since it's inception in the early-mid 90's. :cowboy1:

powerfuldragon
05-11-2007, 10:41 AM
that's disappointing.

Double Barrel
05-11-2007, 12:20 PM
I'm seriously contemplating DirectTV before next football season, mainly because of NFL network.

infantrycak
05-11-2007, 12:33 PM
I just don't think a network should be able to dictate to a cable company how they are going to market or distribute a channel.

Why not, it is all part of the negotiation of the cable company carrying them at all?

real
05-11-2007, 12:38 PM
I'm seriously contemplating DirectTV before next football season, mainly because of NFL network.

IMHO, The NFL network is at it's best in the off-season....

NFL Europe games, Classic Games, Games from last season, Football follies,top ten draft steals, top ten draft classes, a look back at past drafts...not to mention total access everyday and inside looks at different teams camps....

I like it during the season, but honeslty I originally got it for the summer when football is scarce...

hollywood_texan
05-11-2007, 12:44 PM
Why not, it is all part of the negotiation of the cable company carrying them at all?

Totally agree, but if you read the story in the link, you will see that Comcast is pursuing this structure of programming since they didn't get the games on one of their own channels that the NFL Network is exclusively showing late in the season.

It seems there was some sort of deal and Comcast isn't just pulling this issue up without any regard.

From the article:

Justice Bernard J. Fried found that agreements Comcast had made with the league in 2004 let it shift the NFL Network to a digital sports tier. That permission, Comcast argued, was to go into effect if it did not reach deals to carry eight late-season N.F.L. games on its Versus network for about $400 million a year or for the Sunday Ticket out-of-market package. The games ended up on the NFL Network and Sunday Ticket stayed on DirecTV.

Something tells this is a little more complicated and there are some ruffled feathers over at Comcast.

BigWig
05-11-2007, 01:47 PM
AT&T will have it because I think, the U-verse is Dish Netwrok under their name.
Iam with the porkster I have had Direct Tv since the 90's also, heck even my programming is a "grandfathered package" no longer available but heck of a deal.:devilpig:

Porky
05-11-2007, 01:57 PM
Why not, it is all part of the negotiation of the cable company carrying them at all?


Maybe, but I look at it more like a wholesale/retail deal. IE - I produce a widget. In this case the widget is a TV channel with content. I then seek "retailers". In this case, retailers are those who distribute my content. If nobody likes my widgets/content, then I may not sell any. If they do, I sell it to them. They in turn retail the content to thier users in any manner they wish.

Now, there will be negiotions over the price paid for my product, etc., but I don't tell them how they can display it. I just don't see a scenerio where a wholesale producer of product should be able to force a retailer to distribute it's product at all, much less a certain way. If I make widgets, and Walmart doesn't want to buy it, I move on to the next retailer, while also trying to build a demand for the product so the customers themselves will force Walmart into buying my product. I don't go tell walmart you must put my product on an end cap at the front of the store, and also at all the registers, at least not without some cash favors to pay for product placement. :devilpig:

Specnatz
05-11-2007, 02:21 PM
I have no problem with that, because NFL network is charging the cable company, they just do not want the cable company charging the customer. I have digital cable time warner so this would be ok with me if they would carry the darn thing.

hollywood_texan
05-11-2007, 02:26 PM
Maybe, but I look at it more like a wholesale/retail deal. IE - I produce a widget. In this case the widget is a TV channel with content. I then seek "retailers". In this case, retailers are those who distribute my content. If nobody likes my widgets/content, then I may not sell any. If they do, I sell it to them. They in turn retail the content to thier users in any manner they wish.

Now, there will be negiotions over the price paid for my product, etc., but I don't tell them how they can display it. I just don't see a scenerio where a wholesale producer of product should be able to force a retailer to distribute it's product at all, much less a certain way. If I make widgets, and Walmart doesn't want to buy it, I move on to the next retailer, while also trying to build a demand for the product so the customers themselves will force Walmart into buying my product. I don't go tell walmart you must put my product on an end cap at the front of the store, and also at all the registers, at least not without some cash favors to pay for product placement. :devilpig:

In your example, The NFL Network is really the manufacturing company, not the wholesaler.

There are deals stipulating requirements if a retailer is going to carry a product. That is how a manufacturer maintains it's Brand and identity. It happens all the time and retailers have to abide by certain agreements if they want to carry certain products.

Having said that, the TV distribution business is very different from the manufacturing business, so your analogy is little difficult to pull off.

From the article, Comcast is not pulling this issue out of thin air. There appears to be a previous agreement on TV distribution that wasn't followed through with by the NFL Network, and therefore Comast can put that channel in it's sports package or whatever it's called. That is what the appear to be arguing over.

texasguy346
05-11-2007, 02:31 PM
I'm seriously contemplating DirectTV before next football season, mainly because of NFL network.

I recently switched to DirecTV from TWC. I didn't switch for NFL network, but that was an added benefit. Time Warner was just awful as far as customer service goes & I just got fed up with it. I'm loving it so far.

DerekLee1
05-11-2007, 02:58 PM
Ruling moves NFL Network a step closer to Houston cable boxes (http://www.chron.com/disp/story.mpl/headline/sports/4796309.html)

A New York state judge has ruled in favor of Comcast in its carriage dispute with NFL Network, moving Comcast one step closer to adding the channel on its recently acquired Houston cable system.

...

Comcast officials said the company will notify regulators and customers within 30 to 60 days of their plans to launch NFL Network in Houston on a sports tier. A spokesperson said the launch "certainly" would take place before the beginning of the regular season.

V Man
05-11-2007, 03:14 PM
Ruling moves NFL Network a step closer to Houston cable boxes (http://www.chron.com/disp/story.mpl/headline/sports/4796309.html)

A New York state judge has ruled in favor of Comcast in its carriage dispute with NFL Network, moving Comcast one step closer to adding the channel on its recently acquired Houston cable system.

...

Comcast officials said the company will notify regulators and customers within 30 to 60 days of their plans to launch NFL Network in Houston on a sports tier. A spokesperson said the launch "certainly" would take place before the beginning of the regular season.

Wonder how far behind Time Warner in SA is? I know I heard from a friend that Time Warner was waiting to see what happens with Comcast.

nunusguy
05-11-2007, 03:59 PM
"Comcast officials said the company will notify regulators and customers within 30 to 60 days of their plans to launch NFL Network in Houston on a sports tier. A spokesperson said the launch "certainly" would take place before the beginning of the regular season."
********************************
That statement carries zippo credibility with me.
Comcast was supposed to become the Houston areas cable service provider right after the first of the year, and now in May I'm still waiting for that to happen.

Vinny
06-04-2007, 03:29 PM
And that will be how many years ? Then the loser in the appellate ruling appeals to the SC, right ?
I dunno, but I'm probably gonna have to switch to SAT from TWC to get the NFL Network anytime soon.
Anybody heard anything about U-Verse, an AT&T product ? They reportedly offer the NFL Network.

anyone have any updates on uverse?
AT&T U-verse Doomed?
February 13, 2007
AT&T logoMany have heard of the difficulties in implementing AT&T's U-verse IPTV service. AT&T's U-verse network is actually a fiber/copper hybrid, which pulls fibers to 3,000 to 5,000 feet from the homes they serve, where it then connects to mini-DSLAMs called "52B" boxes and then it runs copper the last mile to the home. This hybrid approach is a bargain when compared to the $20 billion Verizon is spending to build-out fiber all the way to the home. This hybrid fiber/copper approach gives AT&T a 20Mbps+ link to customers, enough to offer high-speed Internet, VoIP, and the company's IPTV service. The problem is getting towns to grant public right of ways for these massive 52B boxes, which hold DSLAMS, batteries, and cooling gear in rugged, weatherproof cases. Many towns objected or wanted AT&T to sign video franchise agreements. Lawsuits were filed, including cable companies that want to classify U-verse service as a "cable service" to force AT&T to abide by the same build-out rules, which has drastically affected U-verse deployment . In addition, the IPTV service uses proprietary set-top boxes from Microsoft, which had their own share of problems - mostly software related.
http://blog.tmcnet.com/blog/tom-keating/triple-play/att-uverse-doomed.asp

HoustonFrog
06-04-2007, 03:35 PM
I'm seriously contemplating DirectTV before next football season, mainly because of NFL network.


I have DirectTV now have for the last 2 years and I think it is better and cheaper than cable to start and when I got it I got free DVR, etc I was sold. I love it. I'll never go back to the gauging cable people.

TEXANS84
06-05-2007, 12:19 PM
"Comcast officials said the company will notify regulators and customers within 30 to 60 days of their plans to launch NFL Network in Houston on a sports tier. A spokesperson said the launch "certainly" would take place before the beginning of the regular season."
********************************
That statement carries zippo credibility with me.
Comcast was supposed to become the Houston areas cable service provider right after the first of the year, and now in May I'm still waiting for that to happen.

June 19th is the official switchover date. I was hoping that NFLN would be available then, but it looks like a 30-60 day grace period of notification before its availalbe. boo.