Shed a tear, "Dexter" fans. The end is near, and you may not be able to watch the drama this weekend.
A fee dispute between CBS Corp., which owns Showtime, and Bright House Networks means that the premium channel is off the cable system in Central Florida. Time Warner Cable negotiates for Bright House in these situations, as viewers know well from other standoffs.
Here's how Showtime sees the situation:
"Showtime Networks' customers nationwide have had their services disrupted by Time Warner Cable today, when for the first time in Showtime history a distributor has chosen to remove the network's programming – despite the network's authorization to allow carriage while negotiations continue. Our customers chose to subscribe to Showtime, and Time Warner Cable in turn chose to pull our service from the subscribers we both serve. Attempts to reach an extension on negotiations were denied by Time Warner Cable, resulting in Showtime going dark in major markets."
Here's how Bright House sees the situation:
"CBS has decided not to allow Bright House Networks to carry the Showtime channel. By law we must have the owner’s permission (CBS) to carry the channel. CBS’s unfair blackout also affects The Movie Channel and Smithsonian here in Central Florida. We believe broadcaster blackouts are wrong. Despite CBS’s blackout we anticipate that their channels will be returned to the lineup shortly. In the meantime Bright House Networks has gone the extra mile and will offer a free preview of the Starz Movie Channel to Showtime customers and the Encore Movie channel to TMC customers."
And Showtime released a statement as well on Friday:
"Time Warner Cable negotiates on behalf of Bright House Networks. Showtime offered Time Warner Cable the right to continue to carry Showtime Networks' channels while we negotiated, but Time Warner Cable refused."
The CBS-Time Warner fee dispute has been more disruptive in a few other markets. CBS is off the cable system in New York, Los Angeles, Dallas and several other markets.
How do you see the situation?