As Time Warner Cable and
CBS continue their negotiating deadlock, Starcom MediaVest researcher Sam Armando has discovered how widespread the blackouts are individually in the New York, Los Angeles and Dallas markets. TWC has
refused to make the figures available.
Armando writes in a blog post that 17% of homes in both New York and Dallas are without the local CBS station, while the figure climbs to 26% in the
Los Angeles market.
On a national level, the number of homes with CBS-owned local stations blacked out is around 3.2 million, according to CBS. Showtime is off the air across TWC’s
national footprint, as TWC and CBS continue to battle over terms of re-upping a carriage deal. The blackouts started Aug. 2.
CBS has called on talent to encourage TWC customers to switch
providers and on Monday brought the Manning brothers into the fold. A newspaper ad in New York might suggest CBS thinks the blackouts could continue until Sept. 15.
“You could miss
this historic matchup,” the ad reads, referring to the New York Giants vs. Denver Broncos game on that Sunday, with Peyton and Eli Manning facing off.
The ad also suggests viewers
could miss the much-anticipated college game between Alabama and Texas A&M on Sept. 14 “featuring Heisman winner Johnny Manziel.” That copy could become moot any day now as Manziel is
under NCAA investigation for receiving payments for his autograph; he could be suspended for the game.
Distributors can be loath to run ads during competitors’ blackouts that directly
name the competitor while looking to peel away its customers. But a Monday newspaper ad in New York from RCN touted “CBS + Showtime For All!” and encouraged switching to its service with
an offer of Internet plus TV for $39.99 a month for 12 months.
RCN does not operate in Los Angeles and Dallas.