Customers lose Viacom channels
by Paisley Boston
Apr 01, 2014 | 550 views | 0 0 comments | 1 1 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Cable One's contract with Viacom has expired.

The company has been negotiating with Viacom to continue carrying networks BET, Centric, CMT, Comedy Central, MTV, MTV2, MTV Hits, Nickelodeon, Nick Jr., Nick Teen, Nick Toons, Spike, TV LAND, VH-1, and VH-1 Classic but at midnight on Monday Viacom's contract ended.

According to Public Relations Manager Trish Niemann, Viacom asked for a rate increase greater than 100 percent to continue carrying all 15 of their networks, even though the ratings were down since 2010 on 12 of their networks. 

Niemann said Cable One asked Viacom to allow the company to carry some of the channels but Viacom demanded an even higher rate.

This meant Cable One would have to pay more, for fewer channels.

"We’ve received feedback from our customers and you don’t want to pay more for networks that they are watching less," she added.

Niemann said Cable One hoped to come to a reasonable agreement with Viacom that would have had minimal impact on its customers' monthly bills.  

In a previous interview, she said if Cable One did not come to an agreement with Viacom then Cable One would bring their customers some of the top-rated networks that they had been requesting and expand several other highly-requested networks to their most popular level of service.

Those channels include (depending on your level of service) Sprout, National Geographic, Fox Sports 1, Hallmark, TV One, BBC America, Investigation Discovery, IFC, The Blaze, and Sundance.

"On a regular basis our customers e-mail us on our Facebook page asking us to add certain channels. We have constant request. We compile the requests and we choose the most popular ones," said Niemann.

"Customers can expect to start seeing new channels beginning Wednesday. It will take several days however, to get all of the channels up and running," she added.

Niemann said although Cable One is making efforts to retain its customers, it might be a little difficult because some of their consumers enjoy the Viacom networks.

"We do know however, that there are a few customers who are very attached to some particular programs that Viacom provides who may decide to switch and we can understand that," she continued.

"We worked hard to come to a reasonable agreement with Viacom so that we could keep our customers’ bills as low as possible and avoid any immediate rate increases but they refused to come to a fair negotiation. We will continued to give our customers the best possible services without huge hikes in their monthly bills," she added.

On its channels, Viacom ran scrollers and commercials claiming Cable One refused to negotiate with its people on a new contract.

Cable One serves over 730,000 customers in 19 states with high speed Internet, cable television, and telephone service.