Viacom and TWC pending deal raises concerns for online media availability, distribution

By Justin Mann on
The first day of the year came and went with no discernible change in Time Warner's customers ability to view Viacom content that includes MTV, Nickelodeon, and Comedy Central channels on customers' TVs or the web.

Viacom has been threatening to pull their shows from Time Warner Cable following a failed deal renewal in which Viacom is asking for a rate increase. What's made this situation unique is that Viacom has been notifying TWC customers through their website that content will be stripped unless they reach an agreement. The company even went a step further than just threatening to pull content from TWC's cable network, also announcing their decision to block TWC Internet customers from accessing their shows online despite of the fact they make these shows available for free through many other venues.

After the apparent extension of negotiations (since no service disruption has taken place so far), Viacom has apologized for some of their more aggressive parts of this campaign. TWC and Viacom have yet to work out an actual deal, but regardless of the outcome should content distributors specifically deny certain ISPs access to media? Let's raise a warning flag on this one.

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