DAILY VARIETY’s Jill Goldsmith reported Cox Communications, “the nation's third largest cable company, said it's launching a new Cox TV Economy package for money-conscious consumers that's in between the pared-down basic and expanded channel offerings, but like basic doesn't include ESPN and some other networks.” The $35 option “is a midpoint between the $20 starter package and circa $60 expanded basic cable.” While still a “far cry from the ‘a la carte’ programming that content companies fear, the move is another sign that consumers are eager for alternatives in difficult economic times and with viewing options multiplying” (VARIETY.com, 1/24).
PEOPLE & PERSONALITIES: On Long Island, Neil Best reports YES Network’s lead pre- and postgame reporter Kimberly Jones “will not return to the network for the 2012 season.” YES had “offered Jones a new contract, and the parting was amicable.” Best wrote it is believed that the NFL Network has an “interest in her” (NEWSDAY, 1/25)....The Lakers yesterday announced they have hired Adrian Garcia Marquez and Francisco Pinto as the team’s Spanish play-by-play and TV analyst respectively, for the upcoming ’12-13 season. Time Warner Cable will launch a Spanish-language regional sports network. Garcia Marquez and Pinto will serve as the team’s Spanish TV announcers for the new network (Lakers).
GLOBAL EXPANSION: In Connecticut, Richard Lee reports WWE has “solidified its position in the Russian market by launching a local-language website supporting its presence there.” Developed by Tvigle Media, the site “will replicate content from the global WWE website (wwe.com) and also include localized content created for Russian fans” (STAMFORD ADVOCATE, 1/25).