Cablevision, Rejecting Verizon's Request, Refuses to Provide FiOS TV Subscribers - and Millions of Other Viewers - Access to New York Gubernatorial Debate

Categories: Network TV Press Releases

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October 16th, 2010

via press release:

Cablevision, Rejecting Verizon's Request, Refuses to Provide FiOS TV Subscribers - and Millions of Other Viewers - Access to New York Gubernatorial Debate

NEW YORK, Oct. 16 /PRNewswire/ -- Verizon is reaching out to elected officials and others on Long Island and around the state to seek their support for the company's efforts to broadcast the first gubernatorial debate leading up to the 2010 election.

The debate will be held at Hofstra University on Monday (Oct. 18) and is sponsored by Cablevision.

"Verizon FiOS TV customers and millions of other viewers served by other providers across the state have essentially been blacked out of the debate, denying them their rights as citizens and voters, since Cablevision is the sole broadcaster of the event," said Michelle Webb, general manager and chief programming officer of FiOS1, Verizon's news channel for Long Island and northern New Jersey.  "And while the broadcast will be available on certain websites and some radio, those may not be practical solutions for many people."

Verizon is making the situation known to the candidates' staffs, elected officials, voter rights groups and community leaders.

Verizon's efforts come after Cablevision refused repeated requests to share the broadcast of this only scheduled debate.  "We reached out to Cablevision directly, but our request was flatly denied," Webb said.

She added: "Cablevision's refusal to make this historic debate available to residents and voters acrossNew York is nothing short of outrageous.  We're not asking to play a formal role in the debate; we're only seeking the right to make it available -- live on television -- to consumers who may not be able to see the event otherwise.  In an election season, we should leave politics to the candidates.  An informed voter is something that every broadcaster should want.  The debate should be available to everyone."

Cablevision's refusal to share the broadcast of the debate is consistent with its other anti-competitive policy to deny its sports programming in high definition to other carriers.

Verizon Communications Inc. (NYSE, Nasdaq: VZ), headquartered in New York, is a global leader in delivering broadband and other wireless and wireline communications services to mass market, business, government and wholesale customers.  Verizon Wireless operates America's most reliable wireless network, serving more than 92 million customers nationwide.  Verizon also provides converged communications, information and entertainment services over America's most advanced fiber-optic network, and delivers innovative, seamless business solutions to customers around the world.  A Dow 30 company, Verizon last year generated consolidated revenues of more than $107 billion.  For more information, visit www.verizon.com .

VERIZON'S ONLINE NEWS CENTER: Verizon news releases, executive speeches and biographies, media contacts, high-quality video and images, and other information are available at Verizon's News Center on the World Wide Web at www.verizon.com/news .  To receive news releases by e-mail, visit the News Center and register for customized automatic delivery of Verizon news releases.

SOURCE Verizon

 
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