D.C. Tries to Force Comcast's Hand (1 Viewer)

cablewithaview

Thread Starter
Stand against retrans!!!
Supporting Founder
Apr 18, 2005
398
0
DeKalb County, AL
Council Will File Emergency Legislation to Get Nationals Ballgames on TV

D.C. Council members Jack Evans (D-Ward 2) and Vincent Orange (D-Ward 5) will submit emergency legislation on Tuesday aimed at compelling Comcast to carry Washington Nationals games or risk losing lose their license to operate in the District.

"I am taking matters into my own hands and moving forward to get the Nationals games on TV," Evans said yesterday. "I hope this compels the interested parties to move swiftly and reach an agreement."

Comcast subscribers throughout the Washington region can watch only Nationals games broadcast on WDCA (Channel 20) and WTTG (Channel 5). Additional games are broadcast on ESPN, but some are blacked out locally. The vast majority of Nationals games are shown on Mid-Atlantic Sports Network (MASN).

Philadelphia-based Comcast is the largest cable company in the United States with more than 21 million subscribers. Comcast serves 1.3 million customers in the region and has more than 100,000 customers in the District.

Five cable and satellite providers in the Washington area have agreed to broadcast MASN's Nationals games to about 2 million households, but the team cannot achieve maximum distribution throughout the Washington region without Comcast. And with the Nationals' home attendance sagging and the team playing poorly, Orange said it's critical that the team get maximum television exposure.

"Putting the games on television helps create interest and brings fans to the ballpark," Orange said. "We feel we have the right to do that and that's why we are going to introduce the legislation. It's the right thing to do. We have a $611 million investment in this team and we can't have Comcast destroying that investment."

Evans and Orange said yesterday they are confident they have the nine votes needed to pass the emergency legislation, which would become effective in 10 days or upon Mayor Anthony A. Williams signing it, whichever comes first. The legislation would last 90 days before expiring, and then must be renewed, Evans said.

Comcast has refused to air MASN, which is the home network for the Nationals, because of a dispute between its network subsidiary, Comcast SportsNet, and MASN owner Peter Angelos over the television rights to the Baltimore Orioles. Angelos owns the Orioles as well as MASN.

Comcast is suing Angelos over the right to air the Orioles after the cable company's contract with the team expires at the end of this season. A Montgomery County Circuit Court judge dismissed Comcast's lawsuit twice, and the company is now appealing.

Angelos and Comcast executives were called before a U.S. House committee this month, where they were urged to strike a deal that would break a stalemate preventing Comcast's area customers from receiving Nationals games. Angelos offered to combine MASN with Comcast's SportsNet if Comcast will put the Nationals games on, but a deal has failed to materialize.

"At the local, federal and regulatory levels, there is growing outrage against Comcast for abusing its monopoly and punishing Nationals fans," MASN spokesman Todd Webster said. "We applaud this effort and hope the council will work quickly to get the games to the fans."

Comcast has said that if Major League Baseball terminates its joint ownership in MASN and frees up the rights to the Nationals for public auction, Comcast will pay the Nationals $20 million for the games this year and more in the future. MASN currently pays the Nationals $20 million to air the games, and the Nationals have 10 percent ownership in MASN that grows to 33 percent in future years.

"We are the only party that has offered a compromise solution to resolve this unfortunate situation, which has not been reciprocated by the other parties who are responsible for the Nationals not being on television," Comcast Executive Vice President David L. Cohen said in a statement yesterday. "We share and understand the frustration about the Nationals' TV rights. We have talked and met with MASN and have urged Major League Baseball to convene a meeting of all parties in an attempt to resolve this situation as expeditiously as possible."

The Orioles, who own most of MASN, were given TV rights to the Washington area by MLB in 1981. When the Nationals moved here last season, Angelos agreed to share the territory and dropped his opposition to the franchise's relocation in return for control of local television broadcasts of the Nationals.

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2006/04/28/AR2006042802134.html?nav=rss_sports
 

branchbouncer

Supporting Founder
Supporting Founder
Apr 5, 2004
1,205
4
Massanutten,VA
If this was in any other city the politicians would not bat an eye and would show no concern what so ever if a cable company couldn't/wouldn't carry baseball.DC is so full of themselves,I am glad I was able to get my family out of there.DC=s**thole
 

jgantert

SatelliteGuys Pro
Apr 7, 2004
1,903
0
Aberdeen, MD
Haha, I would love to see comcast pull the plug on DC if they force them to carry MASN. hahaha.

Not that it would really happen, but would be fun to watch. Comcast could just say, ok then -- go with that other cable TV provider. hahahaha

Life is great when you run a monopoly!

-John
 

LonghornXP

Supporting Founder
Supporting Founder
jgantert said:
Haha, I would love to see comcast pull the plug on DC if they force them to carry MASN. hahaha.

Not that it would really happen, but would be fun to watch. Comcast could just say, ok then -- go with that other cable TV provider. hahahaha

Life is great when you run a monopoly!

-John

I hope Verizon is installing fiber in this area or will soon because if Comcast did pull the plug on this they might keep their customers for a while but once Verizon TV is offered it will be the end of their cable tv business. Trust me people don't forget their entire TV offerings being turned off because of carriage of a local baseball team no matter who is at fault. No way would Comcast ever turn off service over this.
 

josem3

SatelliteGuys Pro
Dec 22, 2004
153
1
Palm Bay, FL
That what happen with a big company like Comcast try to monopoly the sport channels. I remember few years ago, Comcast tried to buy Walt Disney Co. to obtain the sport channels like ABC, ESPN's and TNT but Walt Disney Co. smelled the ugly ideal coming from Comcast and they didn't let happen. I'm glad did't go thru.
 

cablewithaview

Thread Starter
Stand against retrans!!!
Supporting Founder
Apr 18, 2005
398
0
DeKalb County, AL
josem3 said:
That what happen with a big company like Comcast try to monopoly the sport channels. I remember few years ago, Comcast tried to buy Walt Disney Co. to obtain the sport channels like ABC, ESPN's and TNT but Walt Disney Co. smelled the ugly ideal coming from Comcast and they didn't let happen. I'm glad did't go thru.

TNT a Disney company?
 

cablewithaview

Thread Starter
Stand against retrans!!!
Supporting Founder
Apr 18, 2005
398
0
DeKalb County, AL
jgantert said:
Haha, I would love to see comcast pull the plug on DC if they force them to carry MASN. hahaha.

Not that it would really happen, but would be fun to watch. Comcast could just say, ok then -- go with that other cable TV provider. hahahaha

Life is great when you run a monopoly!

-John

I use to work with a bunch that did pull the plug on the system. Mayor kept giving them crap and she said, "just pull the damn plug!" they did and that was the end of her being mayor. When people want there tv and someone is holding it up, people will have something to say about it and for her that year, the people spoke in the voting booths.
 

jgantert

SatelliteGuys Pro
Apr 7, 2004
1,903
0
Aberdeen, MD
cablewithaview said:
I use to work with a bunch that did pull the plug on the system. Mayor kept giving them crap and she said, "just pull the damn plug!" they did and that was the end of her being mayor. When people want there tv and someone is holding it up, people will have something to say about it and for her that year, the people spoke in the voting booths.

HAHA. That would be awesome! :)

I'm not sure why politicians feel the need to meddle with everything they can. They need to go back to harmless BS like questioning ball players about their drug use, because anytime they do anything else they just screw it up.

-John
 

LonghornXP

Supporting Founder
Supporting Founder
jgantert said:
HAHA. That would be awesome! :)

I'm not sure why politicians feel the need to meddle with everything they can. They need to go back to harmless BS like questioning ball players about their drug use, because anytime they do anything else they just screw it up.

-John

Why does that sound so true?
 

Users who are viewing this thread

Users Who Are Viewing This Thread (Total: 0, Members: 0, Guests: 0)

Latest posts

Top