NBC Universal, Time Warner Strike Programming Carriage Deal

NBC Universal has struck a unique programming carriage agreement with Time Warner Cable that includes some DVR-like functions for its cable customers.

Under its "Start Over" feature, Time Warner customers will be allowed to start over a particular program when a cable customer tunes to the channel at any time during the program.

For example, if a cable customer tunes to the hour-long "Las Vegas" at the 45th minute of the show or at the 59th minute, a customer will be able to start the program over to its beginning. Time Warner announced its "Start Over" initiative earlier this year.

Advertising critics might be worried that Time Warner is partially headed into an arena where full digital video recorders have caused concern--DVR's fast-forwarding function, which allows cable consumers to skip through commercials.

But Time Warner and NBC don't see it that way. Time Warner's "Start Over" doesn't have a "fast forward." NBC, in fact, believes "Start Over" will have the reverse effect. David Zaslav, president, NBC Universal Cable, said in a release that he expects "Start Over" to deliver "more engaged viewers to our advertisers."



NBC prime-time shows included in the 'Start Over' deal will be "Las Vegas," "The Office," "Surface," the Sci-Fi Channel show "Battlestar Galactica;" NBC News' "Nightly News" and "Meet the Press;" MSNBC's "Hardball with Chris Matthews" and "The Abrams Report;" and CNBC's "Mad Money" and "Closing Bell with Maria Bartiromo."

The agreement includes rights to other yet-to-be-disclosed shows from NBC's broadcast network, USA, CNBC, MSNBC, Bravo, Sci-Fi, and others.

NBC struck more formal carriage deals for USA Network, high-definition network Universal HD; mun2; and Telemundo Puerto Rico.

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