POSTED: 7:16 p.m. HST, Jul 10, 2012
LAST UPDATED: 8:29 p.m. HST, Jul 10, 2012
KITV remained blacked out for Oceanic Time Warner Cable customers in Hawaii tonight, with no signs that the ABC affiliate's programming will return any time soon.
The station and about a dozen mainland sister-stations, owned by New York-based Hearst Television Inc., were blacked out on the cable system overnight due to a contract dispute with New York-based Time Warner Cable Inc.
"Time Warner Cable has terminated negotiations with our company for continued carriage of KITV," said Andrew Jackson, KITV president and general manager.
The station's broadcast continues over the air and via satellite services DirecTV and DISH Network.
KITV's local newscasts are streamed live online, Jackson said, bringing up the irony that many people will be seeing the station's programming via Oceanic Time Warner Cable's Internet service.
"That's the difference between data networks and video programming services," Jackson said.
A notice on KITV's website says that the station's carriage agreement with Time Warner expired at midnight and encourages viewers to get KITV's over-the-air signal or use DIRECTV, the DISH network or Hawaiian Telcom to get KITV's programming.
Oceanic Cable's notice says: "Hearst Television chose to black out their signals from Time Warner Cable customers rather than continue negotiations."
Time Warner Cable discourages customers from switching to satellite services, noting that similar contract disputes also can result in blackouts on those systems.
Time Warner Cable said Hearst wanted a "nearly 300 percent increase" and said their demand is "way out of line. That kind of outrageous increase is unfair to our customers and unsustainable for our business."
KITV said that "notwithstanding our best efforts to reach a new carriage agreement, we were unable to do so. As a result, unless there is a change in Time Warner's position, carriage of KITV will no longer be available to you on Time Warner systems."
Jackson and other Hearst officials say the 300 percent increase cited by TWC is "incorrect."
Hearst apologized for "this inconvenience" and thanked viewers for their support.
Hearst owns 29 television stations, including KITV. The dispute involves stations in markets where the group's over-the-air signals are carried by Time Warner cable networks.