As a Comcast customer, and horror fan, I have wondered why my cable provider did not carry Chiller, the horror and suspense channel. Of course, cable customers always wonder why particular channels are not carried by their provider, but this channel poses different angles than other channels on the market. I contacted Comcast to have these questions answered.
First off, there is no denying the fact of horror TV being hotter right now than it has been in years. With shows like "The Walking Dead," "American Horror Story," and "Vampire Diaries" making waves, this is a prime time for genre fans. I figured it would behoove Comcast to carry Chiller in an attempt to strike while the horror TV genre is hot.
At the same time, Chiller is a division of NBCUniversal, which is owned by Comcast. I wondered why the cable company would not instantly carry the channel. My perception was that a channel which was owned by the provider would make the company more money off of advertising and would cost less money to carry in fees which cable companies have to pay for services.
I spoke to Comcast Senior Director of Corporate Communications - Video Communications Alana Davis. She explained that NBCUniversal is treated as a separate company during negotiations and not simply as a company under the Comcast umbrella. NBCUniversal is on the same playing field as every other company that the cable provider negotiates with. As a business consultant, this makes sense to me.
This is not something unheard of in business. When Delphi was still part of General Motors, the heads of the automotive company negotiated with the parts company the same way it did with everyone else. Extra consideration was not given in an attempt to keep costs low, encourage division-specific accounting and ensure product growth. This was the same technique Chrysler took with Mopar and which many of the major casino chains use with each of their properties. These are not necessarily the specific reasons why NBCUniversal is held in equal court with other companies, but to show common practice and precedence.
If horror fans are interested in seeing Chiller picked up by Comcast, it is time to speak up. There are forms of communication we can all use to encourage the partnership. Chiller's website has a page, which will contact your cable provider to show your support for the channel. At the same time, we can continue to be dedicated to our favorite genre to ensure future growth and to help Comcast and networks notice how strong the genre is.
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