SYS-CON MEDIA Authors: Carmen Gonzalez, Sean Houghton, Glenn Rossman, Ignacio M. Llorente, Xenia von Wedel

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Over 25,000 Viewers, Arts Supporters Urge Time Warner Cable to Keep Ovation

Online Petition Protests Time Warner Cable's Decision to Drop Ovation from its Lineup

NEW YORK, Jan. 2, 2013 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- On Jan. 1, Ovation, the only cable television network exclusively devoted to the arts, was officially dropped from Time Warner Cable's (TWC) lineup. Just before being dropped, Ovation delivered TWC a petition signed by over 25,000 Americans. The petition, which was hosted online at the website KeepOvation.com expresses dismay at TWC's intention to drop the network and urges the cable company to keep Ovation in its lineup.

"The outpouring of support we have seen over the past few weeks demonstrates that the arts matter to people and that Ovation is fulfilling an important role as the only cable network dedicated to the arts," said Chad E. Gutstein, Chief Operating Officer at Ovation. "Time Warner Cable should listen to the voices of tens of thousands of viewers, partners, celebrities and arts lovers."

Among the outspoken Ovation champions are celebrities who care deeply about the arts and Ovation. Actor and arts advocate, Alec Baldwin tweeted to his more than 1 million followers to "stand up for the arts" urging TWC to keep Ovation. So You Think You Can Dance co-creator and head judge Nigel Lythgoe tweeted that the TWC's decision was "unacceptable." Singer and songwriter, Joey McIntyre and thousands of others have also publicly expressed their support of Ovation and their objection to Time Warner Cable's decision to drop the network.

On Dec. 18 a group of over a hundred concerned New Yorkers, New York local and state policymakers including New York City Councilman Robert Jackson, New York City Councilwoman Gayle Brewer, New York City Councilwoman Letita James and State Senator Eric Adams, supporters of the arts including Executive Director of Citizen's for Access to the Arts, Rafe Lieber, Executive Director of the Arts Students League of New York, Ira Goldberg and Director of RxArt, Morgan Jacobs, gathered at City Hall to protest Time Warner Cable's decision to drop Ovation. 

"The outcry of support for Ovation has been overwhelming and encouraging," said Brad Samuels, Ovation's Executive Vice President of Content Distribution. "It's clear how much our network means to Americans and that it provides them with programming that is distinctive, inspiring and valuable. While we share disappointment with our fans and hope that Time Warner Cable will reverse their decision, our network has proven to be a remarkable success over the past six years and that success will continue into the future."

Time Warner Cable has stated that their decision to drop Ovation is based on poor demand and economics. However, demand for Ovation has driven the network's distribution from 5 to 51 million homes in 6 years* and last year, the network saw its audience increase 55%, making Ovation the 4th fastest-growing network, according to Nielsen.** Nielsen data also demonstrates that over 2.5 million viewers in Time Warner Cable subscriber homes tuned into Ovation during 3Q 2012 driving a weekly reach that exceeded that of 23 other networks on Time Warner Cable's lineup.*** According to Time Warner Cable's statement and publicly available data, Ovation accounts for less than one-tenth of one percent of Time Warner Cable's total programming costs.  Ovation remains widely distributed by most of the other major cable, satellite and telco systems across the country.

About Ovation

Ovation is a network devoted to artists and every kind of artistic expression. Ovation programming is a one-of-a-kind mix of original and selectively curated series, films, documentaries and specials. The network reaches a national audience of 51 million homes and is available on cable systems across the country, as well as nationally on DIRECTV, Dish, Verizon FiOS and AT&T U-Verse. Ovation is also available in HD and VOD (both in standard and high definition). Ovation extends its linear channel experience for viewers online via its popular website, ovationtv.com . In addition, Ovation is also active in the social media space. See the Ovation Facebook page for the latest information and conversations about the network and the arts:  http://Ovtn.tv/fb.

For more information on Ovation please visit: ovationtv.com.

* Source:  5 Million Homes in 2007 – Internal Ovation subscriber counts; 51 Million Homes, Nielsen Universe Estimate, December 2012

**Source: Ovation analysis of Nielsen MarketBreaks data, growth based on Total Day Household Impressions, Jan-Nov 2012 vs Jan-Nov 2011, ranking among ad-supported cable networks.

***Source: Nielsen custom analysis of Ovation data, Q312, Ovation analysis of Nielsen MarketBreaks data, Jan-Nov 2012 vs Jan-Nov 2011, and Nielsen NTAR, Q3 2012

SOURCE Ovation

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