Lack of contractual enforcement could lead to dropped TV stations
Most New Jersey residents hate not being able to watch their favorite TV shows. However, many TV viewers in the midwest may be without local stations if a contract dispute between Time Warner and LIN media is not resolved soon.
With the current contract expired on May 31, LIN Media is asking for a huge increase in money - more than 50 percent after another huge increase just two years ago. Although the value of the programming is quite high, these costs will end up being absorbed by the customers, which raises concerns. If no agreement is reached, Time Warner won't be able to continue carrying LIN Media's stations. LIN Media, however, claims that there are alternatives available, such as antennae service and switching to another cable TV provider.
Even though this lack of contractual enforcement happens quite frequently with satellite and cable TV providers, these disputes are often resolved quickly without much disruption to customers. Negotiations have been underway and it's very likely that an agreement will be reached soon.
In an ideal world, disputes of this nature would never arise, but they are fairly common in the business world. No situation is perfect. Circumstances are constantly changing and this can affect businesses in various ways. Sometimes unexpected delays or financial issues can crop up and cause delays or a need to restructure a contractual agreement. Many times, these issues can be resolved without a court battle. The parties can attempt to negotiate on their own. If that does not prove fruitful, then a mediator may be used to help both parties reach an agreement. However, if the desired results are not reached, then a lawsuit may be necessary in order to resolve the breach of contract or contract dispute.
Source: Post Crescent, " Time Warner contract dispute may lead to dropped service," Eric Christenson, May 23, 2013