As of 2:15 Pacific time on Friday Aug. 2nd CBS viewers in New York and Los Angeles were greeted with this message from Time Warner Cable stating  that CBS was, “demanding an outrageous increase” in fees carrying it’s TV stations signals. As reported earlier this week Time Warner, which is the nations second largest cable provider, had temporarily blocked CBS stations earlier this week. Both sides have been embroiled in a tough negotiation regarding retransmission fees. The extended deadline both parties had agreed to, came and went without a satisfactory agreement in place on Aug. 2. As a result, nearly 3 million subscribers in New York, Los Angeles and Dallas will be unable to watch their favorite CBS shows in the foreseeable future. These three markets aren’t the only ones affected, other CBS stations that went dark are WBZ and WSBK in Boston; KDKA, WPCW-CW in Pittsburgh; KCNC in Denver; WKBD-CW in Detroit and WBBM in Chicago. Along with losing CBS, customers in these areas also lost Showtime, TMC, FLIX and the Smithsonian channel.

Representatives from CBS issued a statement saying, “We deeply regret this ill-advised action, which is injurious not only to our many affected viewers, but also to Time Warner Cable itself,” CBS said. “Throughout this process, Time Warner Cable has conducted negotiations in a combative and non-productive spirit, indulging in pointless brinksmanship and distorted public positioning. What CBS seeks, and what we always have sought from the beginning, is fair compensation for the most-watched television network with the most popular content in the world. We will not accept less. We hope and believe this period of darkness will be short and that we can all get back to the business.”

Not to be outdone, Time Warner also issued their own statement. “We agreed to an extension on Tuesday morning with the expectation that we would engage in a meaningful negotiation with CBS. Since then, CBS has refused to have a productive discussion. It’s become clear that no matter how much time we give them, they’re not willing to come to reasonable terms. We thank our customers for their patience and support as we continue to fight hard to keep their prices down.”

It’s expected that an agreement will be reached quickly. Neither company will benefit from a long term battle. Time Warner for instance lost 191,000 cable subscribers last year and a situation like this is not ideal if they want to retain their current customers.

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