The weeks long 'pissing match' between Disney/ABC & CableVision has finally reached a true impasse. At midnight last night ABC7 posted a self serving "Cablevision has betrayed all of you" message and then went blank. Their website SaveABC7.com has copies of all their statements as well as the video clips that they've been playing between and, more aggrevating to me, crawling on the bottom of their shows. The site also give you instructions as to how to switch your provider to one which is paying Disney/ABC to rebroadcast the over the air signal. CableVision responed by a continual video feed of "We don't want to pull ABC, it's all their fault but please stay with us while we figure out what to do" like a sulky child who has been told that they can't have what they want. You can see their side of the story here at CableVision.com their response page on their website. Their reply to customers, for now, is "Please support us, get a digital signal converter or watch the content on Hulu.com or ABC.com"
I'll tell you who, IMHO, loses, THE CUSTOMER. This was timed to coincide with the Oscars broadcast which, by contractual agreement, will not be shown on any other venue including ABC.com. Like most of the Long Island customers, I live outside of the range of digital, over the air, signals so a converter box and new antenna won't work. Even if I wanted to change providers it couldn't be done for a week or more meaning that I miss the Oscars broadcast anyway. One way or another it will be the customer who pays for this either by losing a popular channel or paying higher fees. In my opinion, the FCC needs to step in and establish clear rules as to whether or not cable providers are entitled to rebroadcast over the air signals without paying the providers while garnering revenue from customers and whether or not the providers are allowed to charge for content that the broadcast over the air on a free license they get from the government.