All Cox, No Balls

Patriots to Providence — “Drop Dead”

Cox Cable customers received a notice today that the final game of the regular season, December 29th/Patriots at Giants, will only be available in this area on the NFL Network, and for that you have to buy an extra sports bundle. (In Boston it will be carried on TV5 WCVB.) So, if the Patriots are 15-0 going in, and if you have been loyally watching them all season, and if you thought it might be kind of fun to watch history being made, tough toenails.  Corporate money-grubbing bastards… bundle THIS!

smashed tv

9 thoughts on “All Cox, No Balls”

  1. Beth, I’m glad you asked about Mr. Polansky’s comments.

    What Mr. Polansky’s comments did not include was the fact that moving the channel to the Standard tier would increase the costs to carry it, thereby raising everyone’s costs, including those who choose not to subscribe to it.
    The contract between Cox and the NFL Network calls for the NFLN to reside on our Sports & Information Tier. What Mr. Polansky was referring to was a clause in the contract that says we have a minimum number of customers to whom the channel must be made available, but no maximum.

    Ultimately, the number of customers to whom the channel is available affects the programming costs which the NFL Network can charge companies like Cox to carry their network – this is the general principle of programming costs.

    At the end of the day, we are upholding our obligations under our contract with the NFL Network. The real issue here is the Network not considering Providence as the Patriots local market, and thereby restricting access to this game by not broadcasting it over-the-air.

  2. In response to Amy from Cox:

    The NFL certainly shares the blame, but you could at least un-bundle it, and according to today’s ProJo, the NFL rep has said you could make this available to analog customers if you wanted.

    As to the Cox spokesman quoted in today’s article, John Wolfe, what a load of obfuscating gobbledy-gook. This is what lawyers call ‘unresponsive’ in that he answers in complete sentences but doesn’t actually answer any of the questions asked. Do you think people can’t read?

    It seemed not that long ago that we were discussing how the average working stiff could no longer afford to go to a game. Now he can’t even afford to watch it on TV.

    I think there is a limit to the fans’ patience. Particularly when you are up against ‘The Simpsons’ and ‘Family Guy’.

  3. It’s not all of a sudden. The game has been on the NFL Network schedule all season and, as far as I know, despite pressure from fans all over the country, they haven’t budged on any game this season. I first heard from a friend in Texas who couldn’t watch the Cowboys-Packers game midseason and was very surprised then, but it seems kind of late to try to do something now.

  4. I work at Cox and am writing because I think it’s important for you to understand where programming decisions like these are made.

    The NFL and the NFL Network made the decision to restrict access to this game, not Cox. Before the season began, the NFL granted its own network exclusive rights to eight regular season games, the Pats vs. Giants being one of them.

    What’s more, the NFL has the sole authority to determine “local markets,” and has chosen to limit the over-the-air rights to New York City and Boston.

    This is why our RI Delegation – among many others throughout NE – has reached out to Commissioner Goodell – the decision is beyond Cox, other cable operators, and even satellite’s authority.

    The good news is, Cox does offer it. The NFL Network is not available to anyone in Worcester, Albany, most of Maine and many other parts of the country.

  5. Wow, first it seems like it was they were moving their games to ESPN in order for the NFL to gain more money and in turn force customers into shelling out more money to get cable, and now the NFL is moving their games to their NFL network to force customers to buy digital cable. Maybe it is time to force the NFL to stop taking advantage of their monopoly status in the world of professional football.

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