The head of the station group takes to his stations’ websites to offer his take on the blackouts and retransmission consent negotiations with the cable carrier (locally Charter) that broke down over the weekend and caused blackouts of 11 Northwest stations in nine markets. He points the finger directly at Spectrum CEO Tom Rutledge.
Locked in a nasty retrans battle with Spectrum, Brian Brady of Northwest Broadcasting posted an open letter to affected Spectrum (Charter) subscribers, accusing the cable operator of negotiating in bad faith, lying and “weaponizing” its subscribers by blaming Northwest for the impasse and urging them to flood Northwest and Brady with Spectrum-originated emails.
“It is troubling that a company of that size and scale could be so cold and calculating that they would sacrifice the loss of subscribers in smaller communities around the country,” Brady says.
As he was by Spectrum, Brady targeted Spectrum CEO Tom Rutledge, suggesting that he was personally responsibility for the breakdown in negotiation that caused 11 Northwest stations to disappear from systems in nine markets last Saturday.
“Why is this happening, people ask? Because … Rutledge, the president and CEO of the second largest cable company on the planet, doesn’t care about and has no respect for you.
“He only cares that he can use you as one more weapon in negotiating with our company while you continue to pay for the substandard service most of you have described to me.”
“For what you are paying Spectrum you shouldn’t be asked to do Tom’s job. Think about it, he takes away the programming you want to watch, expects to you to pay your bill and offers no refund for what he has taken from you and then weaponizes you to do his dirty work.”
Brady portrayed himself as the little guy. “Tom’s $98 million bonus dwarfs the total size of our company.”
Hoping to turn the tables on Rutledge, Brady provided an email address and phone number and encouraged subscribers to voice their displeasure directly at him.
“Tell him you don’t want to pay nearly $4 for a channel guide that every other cable company has as part of their service.
“Tell him that you don’t ever want Spectrum to disrespect you again by using you as a weapon in his smear campaign against another company.
“Tell him that if he won’t do his job and get you the programming you’re paying for that you will go to his competitor.”