Time Warner Cable Inc. continues to Get Tough against what it says is unfair programmer price increases.
The nation's No. 2 cable operator has launched a new series of ad and Web site enhancements in its Get Tough or Roll Over campaign that it launched last month.
Feedback from nearly 400,000 people who visited the company's Roll Over or Get Tough Web site (www.rolloverorgettough.com) overwhelmingly supported getting tough on programmers that are asking for price increases of as much as 300% over their current contract terms, according to cable operator officials.
Time Warner Cable, which recently inked retransmission-consent deals with Sinclair Broadcast Group and Local TV LLC, faces negotiations with a number of programmers, whose contracts expire at year-end: The Weather Channel, some owned by Scripps Interactive, and such Fox properties as FX, Fuel, Speed, Fox Soccer Channel and a number of its regional sports networks. Moreover, Time Warner Cable faces retransmission-consent negotiations with Fox Broadcasting.
"Our customers are letting us know that they want us to fight against rapidly increasing programming prices," said Glenn Britt, chairman, president, and CEO of Time Warner Cable in a statement. "We've heard them, and we intend to put as much pressure as possible on programmers with unreasonable demands to get our customers the best prices we can."
The company launched its Roll Over or Get Tough campaign on Nov. 25 to ask customers for their feedback on programming costs and to help people better understand the tough choices video distributers like Time Warner Cable have to make.
The multifaceted campaign encompasses the Web site, newspaper, online and TV advertising, as well as emails to customers.
In the new ads, the operator lets customers know that it thinks that a 300% price increase is excessive, particularly in today's economy, and that withholding popular programming is unfair to American families.
The company also has added features for customers to the Roll Over or Get Tough site, including Spanish-language version FAQs, customer comments, and a media room that includes access to campaign materials and media coverage.