Cable systems Click and Rainier Connect may have blackouts Tuesday

kate.martin@thenewstribune.comApril 1, 2014 

Customers of cable systems Click and Rainier Connect could wake up Tuesday to blackouts of more than a dozen channels owned by television network giant Viacom.

Both Click and Rainier Connect have told their customers to brace themselves for the loss of stations that air shows such as The Colbert Report, SpongeBob SquarePants and the Teen Mom franchise.

Both Click and Rainier belong to the National Cable Television Cooperative, which has been negotiating a new agreement with Viacom on behalf of the cooperative’s members. The prior contract expired at midnight Monday.

The cooperative represents small cable systems serving about 5.2 million customers. Various news reports state that Viacom has been seeking more than double what it receives now from the cooperative.

Viacom’s stations include Comedy Central, Nickelodeon, MTV, Spike, BET, TV Land, VH1 and CMT.

Chris Gleason, spokeswoman for Tacoma’s Click cable, said that if Viacom does withhold its signals, Click plans to run blank screens on the affected stations with messages informing customers about the blackout.

Kate Martin: 253-597-8542 kate.martin@thenewstribune.com @KateReports

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