Tuesday, August 02, 2005

Cable One’s Might: Nexstar’s Not Winning

Source: MultiChannel News Comparing the battle to a three-ring circus, Cable One Inc. president Tom Might Tuesday said his company is winning its retransmission-consent war with Nexstar Broadcasting Group Inc.

“Nexstar is either desperate or nuts,” Might said during a luncheon at the National Cable Television Cooperative’s meeting here.

Might, who lost carriage of Nexstar stations of three markets, pointed out that ratings for those broadcast outlets are down 31%-41% from November-May despite the broadcaster’s claim that it hasn’t been hurt.

For the first time, Might went public with the subscriber losses Cable One sustained since the stations were dropped in January. Disputing Nexstar’s claim that the MSO had lost 20% of its subscribers in some of those markets, Might said basic-subscriber losses were running 7% in the three markets.

Combining basic and high-speed-data subscribers, Cable One is down 3.7%-4.6% in the affected markets, making up some of the basic losses with the high-speed customers, according to Might.

During a question-and-answer period, Might acknowledged that Cable One’s sister company, Post-Newsweek Stations Inc., is also seeking cash for carriage. He flashed a projection slide with the names and addresses of executives at both the parent company, The Washington Post Co., and its broadcast division, suggesting that NCTC members contact them about the policy.

NOTE: Nexstar's KTAL, Shreveport has been off Cable One in Texarkana since the first of the year.

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