Cable execs ask for new rules in programming talks

November 17, 2010 By JOELLE TESSLER , AP Technology Writer

(AP) -- Executives for two leading cable TV companies are asking lawmakers for new government rules that would give them more clout in negotiations with TV broadcasters over programming.

Thomas Rutledge of Corp. and Glenn Britt of Time Warner Cable Inc. told members of the Senate Commerce Committee Wednesday that new rules are needed following a series of high-profile disputes over the fees that cable companies pay broadcasters to transmit their signals.

Too often, Rutledge says, consumers are caught in the middle when broadcasters withdraw their signals during negotiations. Last month, a bitter stand-off between Cablevision and News Corp.'s Fox network left 3 million Cablevision subscribers in the New York area without Fox programming for 15 days.

.'s Chase Carey says broadcasters are simply seeking fair compensation.

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