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Fans Of Mtv Rock Cable Firm’s Plans To Drop It Tci Cablevision Reverses Decision After Angry Subscribers Complain

Sat., Dec. 21, 1996

When Yakima Valley cable subscribers shouted “I want my MTV!” they were heard by TCI Cablevision of Washington.

TCI will not drop the 24-hour music-video channel in the Yakima Valley next year as planned, said Gary Bailey, the cable company’s general manager here.

“We have heard from quite a few of our customers,” Bailey said. “There were a lot of people who were really discouraged MTV was going away.”

The company, which serves 33,000 homes from Selah to Prosser, announced last week that it would replace MTV with a nature channel Jan. 1.

The cable system will drop its classified advertisement channel instead, Bailey said.

“We didn’t want to drop MTV. … It’s been here ever since the cable system has been built,” he said.

“I got to looking at the channel lineup” and spotted the ad channel, Bailey said. “The money that is made on that channel is certainly not enough to offset customer satisfaction.”

He said the decision to drop MTV was cost-based, not an effort to censor content. Last week, TCI marketing manager Shelley Bjornson said the company wanted more family-oriented channels and had received hundreds of complaints about MTV.

The music channel will not return to cable lineups in Grandview or Sunnyside due to limited channel capacity there, Bailey said.

Tags: television

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