WEAR back on the air

Published 6:29 pm Monday, February 5, 2007

By By Adrienne McKenzie
Lovers of "Grey's Anatomy" and "Desperate Housewives" should get excited about a much-anticipated agreement reached between Mediacom and Sinclair Broadcasting Company.
After months of deliberation, a retransmission agreement was reached between the two companies late Friday afternoon.
According to Barbara Bonowicz, director of governmental relations at Mediacom, all details of this agreement are confidential, however, it is known that the 12 stations that were dropped Jan. 5 are going to be restored immediately.
Bonowicz could not disclose any information about the agreement, but said she was gracious to Mediacom customers for sticking with the company.
"We are very thankful to our customers," Bonowicz said. "They have given us their loyalty and support during this situation. They have really been there for us and we really appreciate that."
At midnight on Jan. 5, Sinclair Broadcasting Company pulled the plug for the only Pensacola-based TV news program, WEAR-TV, offered on Mediacom's cable service.
The two media companies were in dispute over the ABC affiliates insistence that Mediacom pay for the right to broadcast WEAR and its ABC network programming.
Originally, Mediacom's right to broadcast WEAR expired on Nov. 31, but the two companies agreed on an extension to pursue further negotiations. That extension fell on deaf ears as Channel 3 went black Jan. 5 for subscribers in Atmore as well as numerous other areas. Since, Channel 3 has been home of the Starz Family channel.
According to numerous Internet sites, the rush in settling the argument between the two companies deals with customers not being able to watch the Super Bowl this Sunday in the markets in which Sinclair Broadcasting had CBS affiliate stations. There were letters written by leaders of the Senate to the Federal Communications Commission urging the agency to resolve the issues between these two organizations instantly.
For whatever reason, whether it has anything to do with the FCC or the letters from the leaders of Senate, the companies have reached a deal and citizens will be allowed to watch the Super Bowl, along with any other ABC programs that they love.

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