UCF students planning to watch American Idol, House, 24, Glee, The Simpsons and several BCS Bowls may not be able to using the cable on campus and in apartments nearby.
Why? A bitter dispute between UCF cable supplier Bright House Networks and the Fox network could cause the entire Fox 35 WOFL signal to go dark from campus on New Year’s Eve. That mean’s Tebow’s last game may not be seen on cable.
Fox’s contract with the cable company ends on Dec. 31. Typically, Bright House doesn’t pay anything to run local broadcast stations available over the air for free. But Fox says that’s not fair because they are making money off its programming without sharing enough of the cost.
Bright House pays a fee per subscriber to ESPN and other cable networks, but traditionally, local broadcast stations like Fox 35, which are available by antenna for free, haven’t been compensated.
Fox reportedly is asking for a $1 per month subscriber fee from Bright House, and its partner Time Warner Cable. Time Warner, who is handling the negotiations for Bright House, has reportedly refused to pay that amount, claiming it wants to keep costs low.
Both sides are appealing to the public for support.
Fox is running print ads, TV spots, set up a toll-free number (1-866-KEEP-Fox) and Web site (www.keepfoxon.com).
The cable company has its own Web site: www.rolloverorgettough.com.
The bottom line: If both sides don’t reach a deal by the end of the year, here’s some of what you’ll miss unless you switch to satellite or buy an antenna.
Jan 1 – All State Sugar Bowl (Florida Gators)
Jan 2 – AT&T Cotton Bowl, NFL New York (Giants) @ Minnesota, Philadelphia @ Dallas, Chicago @ Detroit, New Orleans @ Carolina, Atlanta @ Tampa Bay, San Francisco @ STL
Jan 3 – Greenbay @ Arizona, Washington @ San Diego, Til Death, The Simpsons, The Cleveland Show, Family Guy, American Dad
Jan 4 – Tostitos Fiesta Bowl
Jan 5 – FedEx Orange Bowl
Jan 7 – Bones, Fringe
Jan 8 – Dollhouse
Jan 9 – Wanda Sykes Show
Jan 10 – NFC Wild Card Game, Til Death (finale), The Simpsons – 20th Anniversary Special, The Cleveland Show, Family Guy, American Dad
Jan 11 – House (Premiere)
Jan 12 – American Idol (2 hour Premiere)
Jan 13 – American Idol (Day 2 Premiere), Our Little Genius (Premiere)
Jan 14 – Bones, Fringe
Jan 15 – Dollhouse
Jan 16 – NFC Division Playoff Game
Jan 17 – NFC Division Playoff Game, 24 (2 Hour Premiere), Human Target (Premiere)
Jan 18 – 24 (2 hour Premiere Night 2)
Jan 19 – American Idol, Our Little Genius
Jan 20 – Human Target (Premiere), American Idol
Jan 21 – Fringe, Bones
Jan 22 – Dollhouse (Season Finale)
Jan 24 – NFC Division Championship Game
Jan 25 – House, 24
Jan 26 – American Idol, Our Little Genius
Jan 27 – American Idol, Human Target
Jan 28 – Bones, Fringe
Jan 29 – House, Kitchen Nightmares (Premiere)
Jan 30 – Wanda Sykes Show
Jan 31 – Til Death, The Simpsons, The Cleveland Show, Family Guy, American Dad