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Cablevision: You Can Watch Fox Illegally
By Swanni

Washington, D.C. (October 26, 2010) -- Is Cablevision alerting subscribers that they can watch Fox programming on illegal web sites?

That's a charge outlined in an article today by the New York Daily News.

Since October 15, Cablevision has been unable to offer local Fox channels because the cable operator has not been able to reach a new programming pact with the network. The dispute has become heated over the last two weeks, with both sides accusing the other of being at fault.

However, the allegation that a Cablevision customer service rep advised a customer to seek out an illegal web site to watch Fox is arguably the most serious charge yet. The customer, as it turns out, was a Fox employee.

The Daily News says it obtained an audio tape that includes the conversation. (The paper does not say from whom it obtained the tape.) The tape also has the customer rep saying Cablevision has a "team" in place to find other ways for subscribers to watch Fox for free.

According to the newspaper, the conversation went like this:

"Is there anyplace I can get these games?" the customer asks.

The customer rep first suggests the customer get an off-air antenna which could pull the local signal legally. But then he adds that there are two web sites where the customer can get Fox local programming illegally.

"You can watch them online," the rep says. "You know about that?"

He adds: "Thank God for the Internet, right?"

The Daily News reports that Cablevision would not confirm whether the conversation took place.

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Phillip Swann is president and publisher of TVPredictions.com. He has been quoted in dozens of publications and broadcast outlets, including CNN, Fox News, Inside Edition, The New York Times, The Washington Post, The Chicago Tribune, The Financial Times, The Associated Press and The Hollywood Reporter. He can be reached at swann@tvpredictions.com or at 703-505-3064.

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