Cable360AM — News briefing for Monday, Oct. 8 »
There was a flurry of sports network launches heading into the weekend: MLB Playoffs’ high-def home base TBS HD launched on AT&T‘s U-verse (which already carries TNT HD and adds CNN HD later this year) and picked up Dish Network as a distributor. Cablevision started offering the NHL Center Ice out-of-market games package to its iO digital cable customers and will launch the NHL Network on its digital sports tier by the end of the month. Service Electric Cable (covering Lehigh Valley, PA, and parts of NJ) also added the Big Ten Network on expanded basic Friday.
Time Warner Cable CFO John Martin will be promoted to CFO of Time Warner Inc. to replace retiring CFO Wayne Pace later this year, according to the New York Post.
Mediacom and ION Media Neworks signed a long-term distribution agreement that includes launching ION’s qubo and ION Life digital networks.
Cablevision‘s Oct. 24 shareholders’ vote on the Dolan family’s bid to take the company private includes a "majority of the minority" voting condition according to an SEC filing Friday. The Dolans’ proposal now needs to be approved by the majority of Class A common stock owners beyond the family and Cablevision executives.
Concurrent signed a patent license agreement with C-COR, paying $1.7 million to resolve the VOD vendors’ patent transferability issues. Thirdspace Living Ltd. also agreed to drop any claims to litigation proceeds against Concurrent related to C-COR’s patent claims against SeaChange.
Vonage settled a patent suit filed by Sprint Nextel for $80 million. [AP]
BigBand Networks was hit with a class action lawsuit that claims it deceived investors and violated federal securities laws in relation to its IPO in March. The complaint alleges BigBand failed to disclose problems rolling out switched digital video with major cable operators, or that the future of its cable modem termination system business was up in the air; more here.
The Supreme Court tomorrow hears Stoneridge v. Scientific-Atlanta. "The most important securities case in a generation" stems from Charter Communications‘ purchase of Motorola and Scientific-Atlanta set-top boxes with monies put into a bogus ad fund that Charter used to inflate earnings, landing three Charter execs in jail.
The New York Times looks at Google‘s mobile phone plans, which are less about taking on Apple‘s iPhone than cashing in on mobile advertising. The first GPhones are expected next year.
Variety and the New York Times examine developments that have thrown Nielsen‘s ratings into a tailspin this fall season: commercial ratings, online viewing and the increased usage of DVRs by consumers.
Comcast promoted Suzanne Keenan from SVP of customer operations and Comcast University, to SVP of cable human resources and Comcast University. She now reports to Comcast corporate VP of HR, Charisse Lillie, and oversees HR for Comcast Cable. Rick Germano, regional SVP for Comcast Northern California, was promoted to SVP of customer operations and takes over Keenan’s previous oversight of customer service for Comcast Cable. He now reports to Dave Watson, EVP of operations for Comcast Cable.
John Suranyi, DirecTV‘s president of sales and service, resigned Friday, triggering other executive changes: CFO Michael Palkovic was promoted to EVP of operations to oversee Suranyi’s previous bailiwick, while chief accounting officer Patrick Doyle was named CFO to replace Palkovic.
MetroCast Communications reached an agreement yesterday with LIN TV to continue to broadcast WTNH in New Hampshire, WPRI in Providence, R.I. and MyTV9/WCTX in Connecticut. LIN had threatened to pull its signals at midnight Sunday if a deal wasn’t reached. • Read today’s programming, online news & more >