Representative Steve Rothman (D-NJ), a member of the House Appropriations Committee, released the following statement on the current dispute between News Corp. and Cablevision that may keep viewers from watching baseball's National League Championship Series starting on Saturday night and the New Jersey/New York Giants game on Sunday, as well as the upcoming World Series:
If News Corp and Cablevision can't agree on a renewal of the retransmission consent contract of WNYW (Channel 5) and WWOR (Channel 9) by the end of the day today, millions of cable television viewers stand to lose broadcast programming on channels owned by News Corp. This includes keeping its viewers from watching baseball's National League Championship Series starting on Saturday night and the New Jersey/New York Giants game on Sunday, as well as the upcoming World Series. This is unacceptable.
These retransmission consent disputes have been happening too often in recent years and continue to threaten cable television viewers' access to broadcast television stations. That's not fair to viewers -- they've done nothing wrong and shouldn't be held hostage each time there are negotiations between feuding media companies.
To make sure that nobody pulls the plug on the broadcasts of these important sporting events, and other programs, I call on News Corp. and Cablevision to negotiate a new contract immediately. In the meantime they should continue to provide broadcast programming without interruption. An agreement ought to protect both parties' positions, resolve this matter quickly, and, most importantly, protect my constituents and all viewers from suffering because these multi-billion dollar corporations can't get their act together!