Why Programming Disputes Happen


Here is what you should know...


Network & Station Fees

RCN pays programmers (network or station owners) a fee per channel, per month, per customer. When contracts come to an end, we negotiate new agreements, and most of the time, you never hear about them. But sometimes, a network or station owner will demand a significant increase in its monthly fees then may try to force us to accept their demands. In those cases, we believe it’s our responsibility to take a stand and help protect you from excessive increases.



In recent years, broadcasters and network owners have become very aggressive, demanding increasingly larger payments for carriage of their “must see” network shows and their family of networks when historically most channels were available at much lower costs to consumers and the cable TV provider. Here is what is happening:

  • Carrying individual channels instead of a network owner’s entire “family of networks” is not an option offered to TV providers. We are forced to carry ALL networks from a given network owner.
  • Most carriage agreements require TV providers to pay large programming rate hikes or forgo carriage of all networks – with no in between option.
  • Network owners have also forced TV providers to carry channels on specific tiers as part of the agreement, which drives costs higher.
  • Networks are also forcing higher fees on TV providers for TV Everywhere and On Demand carriage as part of carriage agreements.
  • TV providers are required to pay a fee for every household who receives that channel, regardless of whether anyone in that household even watches the channel.


Dealing with RCN has been the polar opposite of dealing with another cable company. I like your guarantees on the email - "We will do what we say we're going to do". It's amazing that basic competence is bullet point these days...

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