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Cablevision and Scripps ‘ standoff continued Mon, as the programmer rolled out print ads in area newspapers, began radio ads and prepared to run TV ads starting Tues. Cablevision’s latest statement: “Scripps Networks pulled its channels off Cablevision, we didn’t. We have called upon Scripps Networks to put the channels back on and negotiate, but they have refused. Scripps wants a $20mln rate increase, from Cablevision and our customers, that’s not ‘pennies.’ as they claim. The channels where HGTV and Food Network appeared on Cablevision remain available, and if Scripps really cared about their viewers they would put their programming back on and negotiate a new agreement.” Scripps has been very vocal about seeking an increase for Food, but this spat is a new frontier as it marks the 1st time Scripps Nets have gone dark. Scripps maintains that it is asking CVC to pay the same price as everyone else, and CVC counters that the programmer is seeking a more than a 200% fee increase. While the MSO has described complaints as “modest,” Scripps says there are a lot of unhappy customers. “2% of their 3mln, which would be 60K people, are in the habit of watching those 2 networks every evening in primetime,” said John Lansing, evp, Scripps Networks Interactive and pres of the company’s lifestyle media division, Scripps Networks. “And it isn’t the same 60K every night. Our cume across the country approaches 70mln every month?the number of people in a month that would sample our network. If you look at Cablevision’s 3mln, and account for the 60K that watch our channels every night and the cume, which would presume that 70% of all of Cablevision subscribers sample our networks, I would suspect they are getting a pretty loud and vocal reaction. And from what I’m reading, they truly are.” Pali’s Rich Greenfield projects Cablevision would be able to lose as many as 39K subs (1.3% of its sub base) and still break-even on the loss of Food and HGTV (that’s assuming a 100%-200% price increase in ’10?though the increase probably would occur over time). Meanwhile, on the same day that the NY Times ran a front-page story about Time Warner Cable’s annual price hike, Sanford Bernstein’s Craig Moffett notes that all the major pay TV providers are enacting annual video price increases and passing through programming increases. “This year’s annual round of price increases is another reminder that competition within the Pay TV group remains restrained,” a research note said. “While programming cost increases may restrain margins, higher price increases mean potential upside to ARPU, EBITDA, and free cash flow.” ? Talks are continuing with Time Warner Cable, which has an extension for Food and GAC. Lansing said things are “progressing very positively, and I’m very optimistic.”

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