American Television Alliance Responds to Cox Channel Blackout

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This week, Cox-owned locals went dark on AT&T TV and
DirecTV. With several of the channels being CBS affiliate stations, the blackout
means that customers in some markets, including Dayton, OH and Seattle will not
be able to watch the Super Bowl with their paid TV package.

Today, the American Television Alliance (ATVA) noted that
this is the fifth time that Cox-owned stations have threatened or withdrawn the
Super Bowl with blackouts involving Charter Spectrum, Dish Network, Verizon Fios,
CableOne, and AT&T.

“This latest contrived blackout holding such an important
national event like the Super Bowl hostage demonstrates how broadcasters like
Cox Media Group intentionally cause maximum disruption and harm for consumers
in order to extract exorbitant fees,” said ATVA spokeswoman Jessica Kendust.
“The price-gouging behavior of broadcasters like Cox has become increasingly
shameless and exploitative and demands action from policymakers in Washington.”

“There’s a very clear correlation between the explosion of
broadcast blackouts over the past decade and the fact that station fees have
soared more than seven-fold at consumers’ expense,” Kendust said. “However,
these outlandish and unnecessary increases have zero relationship to the waning
popularity of stations involved, proving the current retransmission consent
laws are not only unbalanced but entirely broken. Policymakers need to
modernize this law to better protect the American consumer and hold
broadcasters accountable to their public interest obligations rather than
continue allowing broadcasters to weaponize their station licenses and
government-granted exclusivities.”

“Even during a public health crisis, broadcasters have
increasingly relied on underhanded retransmission blackouts to price-gouge
American television consumers,” Kendust continued. “Policymakers simply must
hold broadcasters, like Cox, accountable for these egregious practices by
advancing consumer- friendly broadcast distribution reforms.”

The stations that have been affected by the Cox blackout on AT&T TV and DirecTV include:

  • KLAX-TV (ABC), Alexandria, LA
  • WSB-TV (ABC), Atlanta, GA
  • WFXT-TV (Fox), Boston, MA
  • WSOC-TV (ABC), Charlotte, NC
  • WAXN-TV (IND), Charlotte, NC
  • WHIO-TV (CBS), Dayton, OH
  • KVIQ (CBS), Eureka, CA
  • KIEM (NBC), Eureka, CA
  • KPVI (NBC), Idaho Falls, ID
  • WFOX-TV (Fox), Jacksonville, FL
  • WFOX2-TV (MNT), Jacksonville, FL
  • KVMU (FOX), Medford, OR
  • KFBI (MyNetworkTV), Medford, OR
  • WHBQ-TV (Fox), Memphis, TN
  • WFTV-TV (ABC), Orlando, FL
  • WRDQ-TV (IND), Orlando, FL
  • WPXI-TV (NBC), Pittsburgh
  • KIRO-TV (CBS), Seattle
  • KAYU (FOX), Spokane, WA
  • KOKI-TV (Fox), Tulsa, OK
  • KMYT-TV (MNT), Tulsa, OK
  • KFFX (FOX), Yakima, WA
  • KYMA (CBS/NBC), Yuma, AZ

Super Bowl LV will air on CBS. Those who want to stream the game can watch with CBS All Access.

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