As the clock strikes 12:01 on January first, Time Warner is expected to pull the plug on nineteen Viacom cable channels. These include the most popular channels today, including Comedy Central, MTV, Nickelodeon, VH1, CMT and LOGO among others.

The dispute between the media giants focuses on Viacom's need to increase payments from Time Warner by twenty five cents per subscriber. Time Warner insists the programming is "not worth" the cost increase (as if they asked their subscribers).

Time Warner's eleventh hour posturing is outrageous considering the fees they collect from subscribers today (yours truly currently shells out over $200 a month for their services). Try placing a complaint call to Time Warner Cable today and you'll be greeted with a "call back later" recording. They are receiving an avalanche of calls.

Are there options? Increasing ad costs to offset the subscriber cost is perhaps one solution that will eventually trickle down to the consumer in the form of higher priced goods and services. Better yet, let the local municipalities bear down on Time Warner with tighter oversight on program options that have the potential to severely impact its community's viewing choices.

An agreement between the parties was reached just one hour before midnight! Happy New Year!

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