Spectrum reaches deal so you won’t lose popular channels

Spectrum customers will be able to watch popular channels, including BET, CMT, Comedy Central, MTV, Nickelodeon and TV Land without disruption.

The cable provider and the channels’ parent company, Viacom, announced Tuesday night they had reached a deal to keep the channels for Spectrum customers.

“Viacom and Spectrum have reached an agreement in principle,” according to a joint statement from both companies. “Spectrum subscribers will continue to have access to Viacom’s networks, without disruption, while we finalize terms.”

The statement was posted to and, special websites each company had made to apply pressure to the other while negotiations heated up.

Cable television is a broken industry, said industry analyst Jeff Kagan.

“Typically, the customer’s opinion counts – matters,” Kagan said. But not with cable TV.

Traditionally, content companies could charge whatever they wanted to provide content, he said. However, when cable providers raised rates because they were paying more for the content, customers became angry at the cable company, Kagan said.

In other industries, when customers are angry there’s a downward pricing pressure, but that hasn’t been the case with cable.

That’s why customers pay high prices for channels that most people never watch but still pay for, Kagan said.

But that’s changing with new streaming services like Netflix or Hulu competing with traditional cable for viewers.

“We can hope that the consumer is going to have impact because if they don’t the consumer is going to leave and they’re going to go to a competitor,” Kagan said.

Cassie Cope: 704-358-5926, @cassielcope