2007 Beacon Awards Winners: Issues Management


Cable System I

Cable ONE Arizona Retransmission Dispute
Cable ONE
Phoenix, AZ
On January 1, 2006, Cable One was forced to drop an NBC Phoenix affiliate over a retransmission consent dispute involving cash for carriage. Cable ONE had already invested millions to bring in this out of market signal to rural Arizona and did not want to be forced to pay more. The dispute resulted in 60,000 rural Arizona customers not having access to any NBC programming for 6 weeks. Cable ONE successfully told their story by running a proactive, multi-level marketing and grassroots campaign. The result was the public support of the media, employees, government officials and customers. The dispute was settled and Cable ONE suffered minimal subscriber loss.

Cable System II

The Power of You — Customer Service Makeover
Time Warner Cable
Austin, TX
Time Warner Cable Corporate has been working with the Austin division to develop a prototype of a complete overhaul of the customer experience. Despite many service improvements in recent years, cable customers still have the perception that customer service in the industry is lacking. Nearly 1,000 employees attended the launch event. The entertainment functioned as a backdrop to a much more serious purpose as company executives introduced 12 initiatives that span all aspects of the customer experience. Early results have exceeded expectations: the automated problem resolution system is resolving issues for an additional 30,000 customers/month and trouble calls are down 18%.

Cable System III

Arizona Cable Customer Tax Relief Act
Cox Communications
Phoenix, AZ
A key objective of Cox Communications Arizona was to obtain passage of cable franchise reform legislation in Arizona that gave cable customers relief from excessive local cable fees and taxes and limit unreasonable demands by municipalities and counties for cash and free cable-related services from cable operators. On March 3, 2006, Governor Janet Napolitano signed into law the 2006 Cable Customer Tax Relief Act, a first-of-its-kind state cable franchise reform in the country driven entirely by the cable industry. Passage of this legislation established a favorable image for Cox and the cable industry with state policy makers and ensured a positive operating environment for cable companies in Arizona.


Take Charge! Takes on Internet Safety
Cox Communications
Atlanta, GA
Cox Communications launched a comprehensive “cyber smarts” campaign, building on its successful “Take Charge” program that encourages safe use of mass media. The company focused on strategic national partnerships, compelling research, national events such as a Teen Summit on Internet Safety, and Capitol Hill outreach to highlight the dangers facing kids on the Internet, as well as steps parents and children can take to be “cyber smarter.” Results over the past year have been well above expectations and include major national media hits, greatly increased traffic to the program website and successful meetings with key lawmakers.