Medford Fox channel still off-air amid negotiations with Charter/Spectrum

Medford, Ore. — A local broadcast channel has been off local cable for 8 weeks now amid negotiations with cable company Charter Spectrum.

The two companies don’t appear to be coming to an agreement anytime soon.

Fox affiliate KMVU’s parent company, Northwest Broadcasting, is on the air in several markets across the country, from Medford to New York. On February 1, all its Charter stations went black, and were replaced by a message from the cable company.

Two months later, it hasn’t changed. And an end doesn’t appear to be in sight.

Re-transmission agreements occasionally result in stations off cable or satellite systems, but rarely do viewers lose channels for this long.

NBC5 asked each company for a statement on the status of negotiations:

Northwest Broadcasting, Inc. statement from Jon Rand, Chief Operating Officer

“We remain disappointed and surprised that Charter would put the interests of their multi-billion dollar company shareholders ahead of the needs of their customers-in fact using them as pawns in a negotiation.  That seems to happen when the government allows two giant corporations to merge as Charter did a couple of years ago, and leave customers to fend for themselves against a company who just doesn’t care.”

Charter Communications statement from Bret Picciolo, Senior Director, Communications – Northwest Region

“Northwest decided to pull its programming from our customers’ lineups. We cannot carry their stations without their express consent, which they have not provided us. This is simply how Northwest operates. Northwest has pulled its programming before from nearly all other TV distributors: DirecTV, Dish, and both Verizon and Cable One just last year. Our negotiations are about one thing; reaching an agreement that is fair to our customers.”

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