Millions of Cablevision subscribers in New York may miss out on the Academy Awards due to a fee dispute between Cablevision and ABC parent company Walt Disney. Disney strangled ABC service to New York’s Cablevision customers after the company refused to pay a hefty fee to continue offering the channel.

Cablevision SF

Just after midnight on Sunday, 3 million Cablevision customers lost access to ABC programming when their screens went black. Not before, however, Channel 7 ABC flashed a pissed-off message to Cablevision subscribers venting about the feud.

“Cablevision has once again betrayed its subscribers by losing ABC7, the most popular station in the tri-state area,” ABC Channel 7 president Rebecca Campbell said in a press statement.

Cablevision executive vice president Charles Schueler didn’t take the bashing of his company lying down. “It is now painfully clear to millions of New York area households that Disney CEO Bob Iger will hold his own ABC viewers hostage in order to extract $40 million in new fees from Cablevision,” Schueler said in a rebuttal statement.

Cablevision claims Disney wants $40 million a year in additional fees from them for access to ABC, a figure Disney reportedly disputes. Disney claims that Cablevision is profiting massively off their content and is not compensating them enough for the privilege of offering ABC to their customers.

Unfortunately for Cablevision customers, they are the ones really losing out in this feud. Unless a miracle happens sometime today, a lot of Academy Award lovers in New York are going to have to shack up with non-Cablevision subscribing friends to watch the Oscars tonight.

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