LIN, Cox sink buzzer beater in retransmission parlay


It wasn’t really a buzzer beater – the old contract was in force for another day, until midnight 3/31/11. As usual, terms of an agreement for carriage of nine LIN stations in five markets served by Cox Cable were not released, and also as usual, an agreement was reached with no disruption of service.

As has been the usual case in such situations, both sides had been using their websites to try to court consumer support for their side of the retrans standoff. But now the websites are being used to advise TV viewers that they can go rigt on viewing.

LIN’s NBC affiliate WAVY-TV in Norfolk VA announced it on the stations website. The message read:

“We are pleased to inform you that an agreement has been reached and you will not lose access to WAVY-TV and WVBT-TV. We appreciate your tremendous support throughout these negotiations. This fair resolution ensures that we can continue to provide top quality news, sports, entertainment, and other local programming that is most important to you. Thank you for supporting LOCAL television.”

Not long after came the official joint announcement:

“Cox Communications and LIN Media announce today that the companies have reached an agreement in principle, subject to execution of a definitive contract, for continued carriage of WPRI-TV and WNAC-TV (Providence, RI); WAVY-TV and WVBT-TV (Norfolk, VA); WTNH-TV and WCTX-TV (Hartford-New Haven, CT); WALA-TV and WFNA-TV (Mobile, AL); and WWLP-TV (Springfield, MA) on Cox’s video channel lineup.  The agreement contemplates that customers will continue to have access to the stations without disruption.  Terms of the agreement are confidential.”

There are the LIN stations which continue to be carried by Cox as a result of the retrans settlement:

* Mobile AL-Pensacola FL: Fox WALA, CW WFNA

* Hartford-New Haven CT: ABC WTNH, MNT WCTX

* Springfield MA: NBC WWLP

* Providence RI-New Bedford MA: CBS WPRI, Fox WNAC

* Norfolk-Portsmouth-Newport News VA: NBC WAVY, Fox WVBT