Saturday, October 11, 2008

Time Warner Squanders Good Will

Is it just me, or is the Time Warner vs. LIN TV (KXAN) debate one in which most observers want to see both sides lose? Like I said, I think LIN has the worse hand right now, but either way, I figure this'll be over right around October 29. See, November sweeps start October 30, and as I understand it, they will affect advertising rates for six months, not three, since the normal February sweeps are being affected by the digital switchover.

At this point, I'm fine not having KXAN. (I'm also not watching a lot of KNVA, given that that station is bombarding viewers with annoying announcements about KXAN as well.)

With that said, Time Warner's continual lousy service and channel changes may drive me to another provider anyway. Sure, they've added Starz Kidz & Family on channel 4 as a stopgap while we're without an NBC affiliate, but what else have they done? Well, if you have basic or standard cable, here are the main highlights for October (courtesy their own site):

  • Moved channel 77 to digital only (as of October 1). If you enjoyed watching Rangers or Astros games on Time Warner Cable, I hope you also enjoy paying $6.99 a month for each converter box.
  • They are preparing to move KLRU2 (channel 20) to digital only (where it is already on channel 255) on October 15. According to Maria Rodriguez, PD of KLRU, they are trying to meet with Time Warner to discuss why this change is taking place. As for Time Warner, they are being rather tight-lipped about their reasons, though it certainly appears to be all about getting more people to switch to digital.
  • Raised the price of basic cable to $19.95 a month. Effectively, the cost of basic cable has doubled in thirteen months in Austin. There's not a lot of price difference now between basic cable and a much, much better package via satellite.
So, thanks for nothing, Time Warner. Hope you and KXAN enjoy the doghouse.

Oh, and I did say I expected Michelle Valles to be on KVUE soon. Almost as soon as I said it, KVUE and KXAN both announced their new anchors. I'll admit when I was wrong. Best wishes to Ms. Valles.


pylorns said...

I saw some advertisement where Time Warner was bashing the local TV station and stopped to think to myself, there has to be something else going on here. I'm glad I don't use cable TV, I'd be even more pissed at Time Warner.

AC said...

I just got ATT U-verse for a 30-day trial period. (I haven't dropped TW yet.) I like it better than Time Warner's service. More channels, more sophisticated DVR, and shorter lag when changing channels.