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October 10, 2015

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Ke$ha Books Nickelodeon Guest Role, 'Idol' Castoffs Head to Leno and More TV News

by Chris Harnick, posted Apr 1st 2011 12:00PM
Ke$haKe$ha is heading to ... Nickelodeon? The not-quite-family-friendly 'Tik Tok' singer will guest star and perform on episode of 'Victorious.'

In the episode, Victoria and her friends try to win a private Ke$ha concert by piecing together the singer's name from items found at the bottom of ice cream containers.

"It's a private concert, and yeah, I will say that the costumes are awesome and there's definitely lots of glitter," Victoria Justice told Entertainment Weekly.

"It was really fun to film," she said. "It's the first time on my show that we've had a successful radio artist perform on the show. Ke$ha's kind of edgier, and I think that it's cool to bring that element to the show."

In other TV news ...

When the 'American Idol' contestants get the boot, they won't be go to visit David Letterman anymore. 'Idol' castoffs will now appear on 'The Tonight Show with Jay Leno' on Fridays. [NBC]

Ready to head back to 'Treme'? The HBO series' 11-episode second season premiere is scheduled for April 24. [HBO]

The 'Top Chef All-Stars' finale was seen by 2.77 million viewers. It was a season high for the cooking competition series. [Bravo]

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Discovery's Michael Jackson Autopsy Special Raises Ire, Writer Aron Abrams Dies at 50 and More

by Chris Harnick, posted Dec 30th 2010 1:00PM
Michael JacksonDiscovery Communication's planned UK special, 'Michael Jackson: L'Autopsie,' has angered the co-executors of Michael Jackson's estate.

The European program set to air Jan. 13 will reportedly feature a recreation of Jackson's autopsy. According to the Wall Street Journal, Jackson estate co-executors John Branca and John McClain have called for Discovery to pull the special before broadcast.

"Your decision to even schedule this program is in shockingly bad taste, insensitive to Michael's family, and appears motivated solely by your blind desire to exploit Michael's death, while cynically attempting to dupe the public into believing this show will have some serious medical value," the two wrote in a letter to Discovery.

In other TV news ...

Veteran sitcom writer/producer Aron Abrams has died. Known for his work on shows such as '3rd Rock From the Sun' and 'Grounded For Life,' Abrams died of a heart attack at the age of 50 on Christmas Day. [Deadline Hollywood]

Conan O'Brien is closing out the year with high ratings amongst the 18-34-year-old crowd. During the first six weeks of 'Conan,' the median age of the audience was 33 years old. [EW]

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Update: Disney Officially Signs Deal With Time Warner Cable

by Jean Bentley, posted Sep 2nd 2010 7:30PM
ABCDespite the threatening PSAs and rampant Internet speculation, Disney and Time Warner Cable announced today that they have officially reached a deal to broadcast networks such as ABC, ESPN, Disney and other channels via the cable provider.

The two companies had been publicly butting heads in the weeks leading up to today's contract deadline, with Disney asking for higher fees from TWC to carry the company's channels, and TWC refusing to pay up.

For the full back story of the fight, check out TV Squad's in-depth analysis from earlier this week. After the jump, the full terms of the new contract.

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Disney and Time Warner Cable Reach Truce, But More Battles Loom

by Gary Susman, posted Aug 30th 2010 9:00PM
ESPN's Ron Jaworski and Mike Tirico with Frank Gifford
The good news for Time Warner Cable's nearly 15 million subscribers in 28 states: It looks like the cable behemoth is no longer in danger of losing such Disney-owned channels as ABC and ESPN on the eve of college and pro football seasons and the new primetime broadcast season. The bad news: The deal between the two entertainment giants leaves the door open for further clashes between programmers and cable service providers, disputes that are likely to add to your cable and Internet bills in the near future.

Disney and TWC had been battling for weeks
in the run-up to Sept. 2, the day Disney's current contract with TWC expires. Disney wanted higher fees for its popular channels, including ABC (which cable service providers used to pay nothing for, since its signal was broadcast over the air for free), the Disney Channel, ESPN, ESPN2 and other viewer favorites. If its terms weren't met before the contract expired, Disney had threatened to pull the signals and darken those channels for TWC subscribers. For its part, TWC had resisted the higher carriage fees, though it would ultimately be passing on those increased costs to its subscribers.

Now, however, the two sides have reached a truce, and while there is no official deal in place, both sides seem to expect the details to be worked out before the threatened signal pull-out at midnight Wednesday night. While neither side will discuss the details of the negotiation, it's clear that Disney has won some concessions, which will eventually mean higher cable bills for TWC customers. And probably for other cable customers as well, since the current battle is hardly the first that has erupted this year over carriage fees; nor is it likely to be the last.

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Disney vs. Time Warner Cable: Yet Another Battle That May Take Away Your Favorite Channels or Raise Your Bill

by Gary Susman, posted Aug 7th 2010 6:00PM
Modern Family
Playing this week in summer reruns: another battle between a cable network and a service provider that threatens to either take away your favorite channels or increase your monthly cable bill.

There have been several such battles this year. The latest is between Disney (parent company to such widely-viewed channels as ABC, the Disney Channel and ESPN) and Time Warner Cable, the nation's second-largest service provider. Like other programmers in those earlier squabbles, Disney is negotiating for increased carriage fees, the per-subscriber amounts that the service provider pays to carry each channel.

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Playboy Channel Accidentally Airs on TWC Children's Stations

by Andrew Scott, posted Mar 17th 2010 4:00PM
Playboy TVYesterday, kids in parts of North Carolina may have experienced some very adult entertainment.

According to BBC News, Time Warner Cable accidentally played preview clips of the Playboy channel on Kids On Demand and Kids Preschool On Demand, featuring "nude women engaged in explicit conversations." (We're pretty sure those conversations weren't about the ABC's or 1-2-3's.) The explicit content reportedly ran from about 6:15-8:15AM, and took TWC about an hour to take it off -- er, fix.

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Oscars Held Hostage in Another Cablevision Dispute

by Gary Susman, posted Mar 2nd 2010 12:00PM
Some three million cable subscribers in three states may miss Sunday's Oscar telecast on ABC, thanks to a subscriber-fee dispute between New York's WABC-TV (and its parent company, Disney) and Cablevision over fees the broadcast station wants to collect from the cable service provider.

On Monday, New York City's WABC began telling Cablevision customers in New York, New Jersey and Connecticut that it would pull its signal after midnight Sunday morning if a deal isn't reached by then. Cablevision, in return, issued a statement warning customers that ABC now wants to charge for what it used to give away for free, and that Cablevision customers might have to cough up an extra $40 million a year if ABC gets its way.

The threatened blackout follows two similar episodes earlier this year, including one involving Cablevision, but it probably won't be the last, as broadcast networks and basic cable channels are demanding a bigger share of cable subscription fees.

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Time Warner Cable shopping for a new name

by Danny Gallagher, posted Jan 5th 2010 8:04PM
They've been called many names before by their customers and clients and this week, they are officially looking for a new one. Not that one, sicko.

Time Warner Cable has officially launched "Project Mercury," a behind-the-scenes marketing project to find the company a new name by the end of 2010. Why now? First, they had to come up with a name for the renaming project.

Maybe we can save TWC some bucks by asking our loyal readers to suggest their own names. And remember, all suggestions are monitored for obscenities.

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Why You Can't Watch Food Network and HGTV on Cablevision

by Gary Susman, posted Jan 4th 2010 2:30PM
The price battles between TV channels and cable service providers continue. While Time Warner Cable and Fox have called a truce and reached a temporary agreement that allows TWC subscribers to keep watching 'House' and weekend football, the dispute continues between Cablevision and Scripps over fees for Food Network and HGTV, leaving 3.1 million subscribers in New York, New Jersey, and Connecticut without access to Bobby Flay or 'Design Star.'

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Fox, Time Warner make peace, not war, for now

by Danny Gallagher, posted Jan 2nd 2010 8:00AM
Fox, Time Warner make peaceIt seems that Time Warner and Fox have reached common ground in their hostage negotiations for Fox's programming and your eyeballs. And no toes had to be severed to achieve it. Merry Christmas.

Both sides reached an agreement in their two week long price fixing war that almost left viewers without their precious Fox shows that could have included some college football bowl games.

Of course, none of the games were interrupted or blocked and the world hasn't ended as a result of it. So consider this debate closed for now until the next time Fox dares to ask a cable service for a penny more of the profits. After all, it's not like Time Warner has raised their rates.

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Fox and Time Warner Reach Agreement

by Rebecca Paiement, posted Jan 1st 2010 11:36PM
Fox and Time Warner came to terms today on a retransmission consent agreement that had held both sides up in two-day negotiations. Variety reports that after all-night New Year's Eve discussions that carried through to lunchtime on New Year's Day, a deal was reached that will prevent many Fox channels from being swept off Time Warner Cable systems.

Though neither side is talking about the financial terms struck, both parties seem relieved. "We're pleased that, after months of negotiations, we were able to reach a fair agreement with Time Warner Cable, one that recognizes the value of our programming," said News Corp COO Chase Carey in a statement.

As for the cable provider, Time Warner Cable's chief executive Glenn Britt said the company had "reached a reasonable deal with no disruption in programming for our customers."

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Fed to Fox, Time Warner: Work It Out

by Shawn Perine, posted Jan 1st 2010 12:39AM
In a move that has college football fans breathing a sigh of relief, Time Warner Cable has agreed to the Federal Communications Commission's request to continue negotiations over retransmission rights with News Corporation, whose Fox stations are scheduled to cover the Sugar Bowl on Friday and the Cotton Bowl on Saturday.

What has those same fans waiting to inhale is Fox's cool response to the proposal.

The move by the FCC was an attempt to forestall the broadcaster's promise to pull its stations from a number of markets, including New York, Los Angeles, Dallas, Tampa and Orlando by new year's day. The dispute between Time Warner and News Corp. stems from Fox's demand that Time Warner shell out a dollar per month per subscriber for the right to retransmit their broadcasts. Time Warner has argued that the fee is excessive and has counter offered 25-30 cents a head.

At an hour into the new year on the West Coast, Fox is still broadcasting on Time Warner Cable as subscribers attempt to regulate their breathing patterns in anticipation of the Sugar Bowl. To be continued...

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Fox Declines to Participate in Arbitration With Time Warner Cable

by Scott Harris, posted Dec 31st 2009 11:05AM
Big business bailout? Check. Massive overhaul of the health care system? No problem. Making sure you can watch 'The Cleveland Show' next week? Well, not even Uncle Sam can manage that one.

According to The Hollywood Reporter, Fox has declined an offer of government arbitration in their ongoing dispute with Time Warner Cable. As we reported earlier this week, the two parties are fighting over the amount Time Warner pays for Fox programming, with Fox holding out for more based on their current ratings ascendancy, a stance that Time Warner claims will only force them to pass the cost on to their 14 million viewers.

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S#!% just got real in the Time Warner/Fox price fixing fight

by Danny Gallagher, posted Dec 30th 2009 9:02AM
Time Warner price fixingNo, that's not an altered image of a ransom note clipped from a clever New York Times article or a Photoshopped jpeg cooked up by our art department. Truth be told, those guys ate some mystery Chinese take-out in the office fridge and haven't been heard from since.

Time Warner has pulled out all the stops in their ongoing battle with Fox over licensing fees by accusing them of holding their viewers' favorite shows hostage.

They even went so far as to present their customers with a faux ransom note that demands the money or "you'll never see Fox again." Give Time Warner Cable one more day and they'll start mailing their customers severed toes.

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Time Warner Cable May Drop Fox on January 1

by Scott Harris, posted Dec 29th 2009 9:45AM
Traditionally, the new year is a time for people to make important changes in their lives, as many resolve to quit smoking, quit drinking or quit eating too much. This January 1st it appears that Time Warner may have a resolution of its own: to quit airing Fox.

According to Variety, negotiations between Time Warner Cable continue to deteriorate. As we reported previously, the two sides are deadlocked over, you guessed it, money: Fox believes that as the most popular network in television and home to top programming such as the NFL and 'American Idol,' they deserve to be getting a little more coin from the cable provider in order to offset lower advertising revenue. Time Warner, on the other hand, appears to be claiming some sort of moral high ground, telling viewers who may lose access to their favorite shows that their decision is a stand against rising costs that would have to be passed along to subscribers.

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