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WFOR Owner CBS Wants Viewers to Register Their TV Sets to Be Able to Turn Them On

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Melinda Witmer, Executive Vice President and Chief Video and Content Officer for Time Warner Cable has gone on the record stating that the feud with CBS is not just over the $2/month CBS wants from every Time Warner Customer (up from $0.66 currently) but also the other demands the network is making.

One of the demands from CBS is for customers to register their television sets before being able to turn them on! Yes. Really. CBS wants to be able to give you permission before you can turn on your own TV. Here’s Witmer’s statement from a Q&A video TWC put on YouTube:

CBS announced today that they signed a deal with Verizon, and has suggested that they’ve offered us the same deal that Verizon just signed. And all I can say is, our condolences to Verizon if they signed the deal CBS put in front of us. Everything from having to register your television set to be able to turn it on. To giving up your DVR capability in the future, among many other asks that CBS put on the table that would truly harm our consumer experience. So I hope for Verizon’s sake that they didn’t sign that, but if they did, I’m glad for us because we’ll compete that much better against them when we finish our deal

The new powers CBS is demanding to have over customers’ DVRs could include preventing commercial skipping, disabling forwarding or rewinding. Even disabling the recording or storage of certain CBS shows, or automatically deleting CBS programming from your DVR after a certain time.

A CBS spokesperson told the Wallstreet Journal that “Virtually the same deal that we have struck in the past year with Verizon, DirecTV, Cablevision and Charter, is the deal we have in front of Ms. Witmer,”. We’ll have to wait and see whether those companies had the TV registration requirement.

/ h/t stopthecap/

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8 Comments

    • Scary stuff…
      How did we watch TV before cable? Confused as to how antennas gave me great coverage before and now cant even get a broadcast channel without cable. If Aereo can do it, so can we. Give me an antenna and I will cancel cable..plus get HD at no price

  1. You can hate me if you want, but this post is useless and I’m saying it in a nice way because there’s no TimeWarner Cable in Miami? I know this is nationwide, but it’s no interest to Miami. (at least for now.)

    • Your operative words are “at least for now”. If CBS is doing this with Verizon and TWC, they’ll be doing it with Comcast and U-Verse down the road.

      Also, some of us have interest in the media world north of Ives Dairy Road.

  2. Sumner Redstone needs an enema if he thinks this will fly. Comcast is conspicuous by its absence, so you have to wonder what the owner of NBC thinks of this.

  3. localTVonantenna on

    i watch local TV with my home made antenna. Comcast scrambles most basic cable and degrades it low res if you don’t have their HD box. i seem to be in a good spot and get all the local chs, all i have to do is spin the antenna to get a ch that does not come in. This usually seems to be ch 7 and since they are a Fox affiliate, screw them.

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