Tribune Broadcasting television stations in 24 markets across the United States are no longer available to Spectrum subscribers via the company’s cable systems. The contract between Tribune Broadcasting and Spectrum expired at 5 p.m. ET today, Jan. 2, 2019. Approximately six million viewers have lost access to the local news, traffic, weather, sports and entertainment programming provided by the company’s 33 television stations via Spectrum.
In addition to local news, such programming as the National Football League playoffs and NCAA basketball will be lost. At the same time, more than 14 million subscribers nationwide have also lost access to WGN America, Tribune’s basic cable entertainment network and the home of hit shows “Pure” and high-quality syndicated programming such as “Blue Bloods” and “Elementary.”
“We’re extremely disappointed that we do not have an agreement on the renewal of our contract with Spectrum,” said Gary Weitman, Tribune Media’s senior vice president for corporate relations. “The NFL playoffs are in jeopardy—beginning this weekend with critical games in some key markets like Indianapolisand Seattle. We don’t want Spectrum subscribers to miss these games.”
“We’ve offered Spectrum fair market rates for our top-rated local news, live sports and high-quality entertainment programming, and similarly fair rates for our cable network, WGN America,” Weitman continued. “Spectrum has refused our offer and failed to negotiate in a meaningful fashion.”
Tribune Media Company (NYSE: TRCO) is home to a diverse portfolio of television and digital properties driven by quality news, entertainment and sports programming. Tribune Media is comprised of Tribune Broadcasting’s 42 owned or operated local television stations reaching approximately 50 million households, national entertainment cable network WGN America, whose reach is more than 77 million households, and a variety of digital applications and websites commanding 54 million monthly unique visitors online. Tribune Media also includes Chicago’s WGN-AM, the national multicast networks Antenna TV and THIS TV, and Covers Media Group, an unrivaled source of online sports betting information. Additionally, the Company owns and manages a significant number of real estate properties across the U.S. and holds a variety of investments, including a 31% interest in Television Food Network, G.P., which operates Food Network and Cooking Channel.
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