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Cable Technology Feature Article

November 20, 2012

Lakers TV Blackout Comes to an End for DirecTV Subscribers

By David Gitonga, TMCnet Contributing Writer

Lakers TV lovers who are also DirecTV’s subscribers will once again have reason to rejoice after Time Warner (News - Alert) Cable ended the Lakers TV blackout for the satellite television giant. The agreement between the two companies now allow DirecTV to broadcast exclusive content about the Lakers, L.A. Sparks of the WNBA and the L.A. Galaxy of the MLS. This leaves Dish Network as the only satellite TV competitor without access to Lakers games after it refused to go along for the ride.

DirecTV (News - Alert) now joins other networks including Cox Cable, AT&T (News - Alert) U-Verse, Verizon Fios and Charter Communications that had signed up prior to the NBA season commencement. Earlier, Cox Cable announced that escalating programming costs have been driving up the retail prices for cable programming and in particular, sports programming. While the company did not announce anything related to pricing, it is clear that the statement is a sign that things will change. DirecTV had been withholding to signing the agreement in hopes that it would squeeze Time Warner for the best price it can to keep customer bills down.

Time Warner Cable had placed full page ads on the L.A. Times and O.C. Register to inform Lakers fans that unless they switched from DirecTV or Dish, they would miss nine games in November. The Lakers also put out an e-mail to season ticket holders that addressed the DirecTV blackout. However, DirecTV was not about to lose its customer base and has now finalized the agreement despite subscribers having missed seven games in November.

In a joint statement with Time Warner Cable, DirecTV announced that the two companies had arrived at an outcome that benefits everyone involved. The senior VP at Time Warner Cable Sports, Dan Finnerty, said, “Our partners at DirecTV value Southern California sports as much as we do and we’re thrilled to work with them to bring Lakers, Galaxy and Sparks games and programming to our viewers.”

Want to learn more about the latest in communications and technology? Then be sure to attend ITEXPO Miami 2013, Jan 29- Feb. 1 in Miami, Florida.  Stay in touch with everything happening at ITEXPO (News - Alert). Follow us on Twitter.

Edited by Rachel Ramsey

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