SBD/February 4, 2014/Media

TWC Offers $5 Gift Card To L.A. Subscribers After Super Bowl Feed Was Lost For An Hour

Viewers of a standard definition channel lost the halftime show and parts of the game
After an outage caused some L.A.-area customers to miss part of Sunday's Super Bowl XLVIII broadcast, Time Warner Cable yesterday announced it would "provide a $5 gift card to subscribers who don’t have digital cable and could only watch the game on a standard definition channel," according to Carla Hall of the L.A. TIMES. However, even subscribers "who have digital TV -- the majority -- and so watched the game on a high-definition channel get something: credit for the cost of an on-demand movie once it is purchased." Hall notes not only did viewers "miss a chunk of the second and third quarters, they missed the halftime show." However, service was "restored in time for them to see a commercial from Time Warner boasting of soon-to-be enhanced service." Subscribers "railed at the self-promotion." One subscriber wrote on TWC's Facebook page, "You cannot be serious posting this right now. Good lord, tone deaf much?" (L.A. TIMES, 2/4). In L.A., Tom Hoffarth reports TWC's Southern California subscribers yesterday "continued to spitefully vent" about losing the feed during the Super Bowl. Sources and experts said that "likely only a small percentage" watching the game on KTTV-Fox' "somewhat-outdated standard definition signal were actually affected." But the fact that "anyone had to read a message 'signal currently unavailable' frozen on their flatscreens ... was enough to cause random chaos." TWC Dir of PR for the Western U.S. Dennis Johnson confirmed that the "cause of the problem was a piece of equipment that processes video signals," and the company was "still looking into all aspects of why it happened" (L.A. DAILY NEWS, 2/4).

ANOTHER LITTLE PROBLEM: L.A. was not the only market impacted by a loss of the Super Bowl feed. Viewers in Little Rock, Ark., "lost eight minutes of what would normally be prime Super Bowl viewing" when KLRT-Fox' "transmitter lost power" (, 2/3).
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