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Al Jazeera America added to Verizon FiOS.

Al Jazeera America added to Verizon FiOS.

Al Jazeera America was just added to Verizon FiOS a couple of days ago.  Could U-verse be next?

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Message 1 of 18
Scholar

Re: Al Jazeera America added to Verizon FiOS.

Could possibly, but I wouldn't hold my breath.  Judging by the CenturyLink PRISM lineup, it would be on 220 if it showed up.

 

Interesting to note:

  • they're supposed to be available to 55 million households, yet only 15,000 (according to Nielsen) tune in during prime time;
  • Googling their name and third in auto-complete puts "ratings" as a suggestion;
  • Googling for anything related to the FiOS carriage leads to nothing "official" from Verizon or AJAM, only forum posts and their own FAQ (which must have been hurriedly updated to include Verizon yesterday);
  • in their own FAQ, there are no mentions of any cable carriers that aren't representing the Coasts/Midwest -- for example, no mention of Cable One in the South, Cox, Grande in Texas, even CenturyLink.  If the only holdout (which the press immediately latched on to) is AT&T, and they have ~55M households, you'd think they'd mention EVERYONE who carries them to "shame" AT&T;
  • and let's not forget that industry followers highly suspect that the tiff between AJAM and Time Warner was solved by bartering services for carriage or an extremely low per-customer cost.

 

Personally, I could care less if it gets carried.  AT&T has given their BeIN sports plenty of promotion and was the only one to take a chance on their BeIN 3D channel.  AJAM can't even get anyone in their list of carriers to pick up, on wide distribution, the HD versions of BeIN.

 

I think AJAM should be the one to blink in this staring contest with AT&T.

Message 2 of 18
ACE - Master

Re: Al Jazeera America added to Verizon FiOS.

I hope that it comes to UV.  I think that the legal wrangling may be more of a stumbling block than an impetus. It is on Comcast, TWC, Brighthouse, Dish, Direct and now FiOS.  Sounds like Hallmark.

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*The views and opinions expressed on this forum are purely my own. Any product claim, statistic, quote, or other representation about a product or service should be verified with the manufacturer, provider, or party.
Message 3 of 18
Explorer

Re: Al Jazeera America added to Verizon FiOS.

No offence to anybody but why do people want this channel so bad?

Message 4 of 18
Former Employee

Re: Al Jazeera America added to Verizon FiOS.

I agree.  If people want this channel so bad, why is no one watching it.  Everything I have read states that less than 20,000 are watching it.

Message 5 of 18
Scholar

Re: Al Jazeera America added to Verizon FiOS.


@flutist1963 wrote:

I agree.  If people want this channel so bad, why is no one watching it.  Everything I have read states that less than 20,000 are watching it.


That's the question, but a real answer lies in something no one has focused on yet.

 

Before AJAM went to air, it was an online-only channel predominantly.  In some major markets like NYC, it was available as "Al Jazeera English" over some PBS stations' subchannels, but it was only a handful at best.

 

There was much hubbub when it took everything to cable, no online stream available.

 

So if you think about that angle, just WHO were their big followers?  The "youth" who are tech-savvy, and maybe caught the odd 10-15 minutes of their stream if something was interesting enough to watch for awhile, then it was back on to surfing or texting.  The SAME group that has been lumped into the "cord-cutters."

 

You also have to ask yourself, if it was so successful in its previous iteration -- CURRENT -- then why just sell out?  (Let's just leave it there for this discussion.)  It really wasn't getting viewers before, and now it looks even worse.  Keep in mind:  Almost everyone except AT&T kept everything as-is.  Same channel number, same tier level of service, just swapped the signal.  So people know it's there on the lineup.

 

If it took AJAM this long to get Verizon on board, it's not too promising.  I hardly think Verizon lost a slew of FiOS subscribers by not carrying them from the beginning, especially given their primary market is NYC.

Message 6 of 18
Scholar

Re: Al Jazeera America added to Verizon FiOS.

It's actually quite a decent network.

 

Al Jazeera English is a completely different network. Yes, they carry the same name but Al Jazeera English is a global news network operating out of Doha. They streamed on the internet, and still do. No cable systems really wanted to carry it, for that reason. Some did, some did not. I don't believe they marketed it too much.

 

When they bought Current TV, the point was to use that network to get carriage on existing systems without having to coax the cable systems to add an additional channel. They'd simply be running on an existing feed. Some did not want to, others went with it. AT&T dropped out at the last minute. Time Warner cut Current TV in Early 2013 after the news of the sale, but went ahead and added it back late last year.

 

Al Jazeera America, unlike Al Jazeera English focuses on the United States, and operates out of the United States and has programming created in and aimed at the United States. That includes live news headlines every hour. They also run a few newscasts from Al Jazeera English, which offers news which focuses mostly on Europe and the Middle East. 

 

For the systems that already carried Current TV, it was only available in Standard Definition because that network (the former Newsworld International) was a Standard Definition feed.

 

Time Warner, among others that added it got the whole package. Your SD feed. Your HD feed. And the internet stream of the network in HD for their mobile apps (Like the U-Verse TV app for example) and the Live TV feature on the website. 

 

It's now available on DirecTV, Dish Network, Time Warner Cable, Comcast, Verizon and Google among others. 

 

The real thing holding this up is the court case. Al Jazeera took AT&T to court for dropping out at the last minute. Now they're playing around, because the judge wants specific parts of case to be opened up and neither Al Jazeera or AT&T want anybody else to see it.

 

AT&T already carries their sister networks BeIn Sport, BeIn Sport Spanish in both SD and HD and on the mobile platforms. If they can settle out of court (which I hope they will) and add the network, AT&T will get the SD, HD feeds of the network as well as streaming on the mobile platform. It's an open stream. You don't have to be on your home network to watch it unlike most of the other networks.  

Message 7 of 18
Scholar

Re: Al Jazeera America added to Verizon FiOS.

OK, a few things I got a little mixed up.

 

If you read the AJE Wikipedia entry, you are left scratching your head over why, exactly, did they need to have AJAM if AJE is available all over the world already.  And then you come to the "Controversy" discussion.  So, really, the only reason AJAM was started was to assuage critics of AJE, and to lend a bit more legitimacy by them being able to say, "Oh no, we're different because we cover things from the US."  Sort of like CNN saying to Europeans, "CNN International isn't really like the US version of CNN because we have a London bureau we broadcast stuff from."  It's all part of the same hydra.

 

Can honestly say that even though BBC World News is now available, after watching a few times, the thrill is gone.  If there is something big happening in Europe or the UK itself, I'd tune in.  I'd venture a guess that a few people would do the same if some big Middle East story was happening and AJAM was available.  But outside of those situations, most would continue to breeze past.

Message 8 of 18

Re: Al Jazeera America added to Verizon FiOS.


@chuck6961 wrote:

No offence to anybody but why do people want this channel so bad?


The next time you request a certain channel be added, I'll ask you the same question.

Message 9 of 18

Re: Al Jazeera America added to Verizon FiOS.


@flutist1963 wrote:

I agree.  If people want this channel so bad, why is no one watching it.  Everything I have read states that less than 20,000 are watching it.


Don't assume that most subscribers only want to watch what you want to watch.

Message 10 of 18
ACE - Master

Re: Al Jazeera America added to Verizon FiOS.


@chuck6961 wrote:

No offence to anybody but why do people want this channel so bad?


It's called choice.  The more options the better, the less the worse.  Just how I look at it.

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*The views and opinions expressed on this forum are purely my own. Any product claim, statistic, quote, or other representation about a product or service should be verified with the manufacturer, provider, or party.
Message 11 of 18
ACE - Master

Re: Al Jazeera America added to Verizon FiOS.


@CostaMesaCAGuy wrote:

@flutist1963 wrote:

I agree.  If people want this channel so bad, why is no one watching it.  Everything I have read states that less than 20,000 are watching it.


Don't assume that most subscribers only want to watch what you want to watch.


Amen CostaMesaCAGuy!  Now flutist1963 - where are you getting your ratings from?  And, does it matter?  Smiley Happy  Please remember that this is a news channel and even the CNN's and Fox's of the world aren't pulling huge numbers.   Also lots of folks who defend AT&T's dropping of Hallmark, spout of about low numbers.  One of U-Verse's lead contract negotiators said that Hallmark is ranked #13 and the HMC is #43.  Not bad #'s.  Now he did not say if that is a weekly #, monthly #, total viewership or what but be careful when talking numbers. Smiley Wink

Award for Community Excellence 2019 Achiever*
*The views and opinions expressed on this forum are purely my own. Any product claim, statistic, quote, or other representation about a product or service should be verified with the manufacturer, provider, or party.
Message 12 of 18
Scholar

Re: Al Jazeera America added to Verizon FiOS.

Wait a minute ...........

 

I was the one who cited the 15,000 average in prime time -- by Nielsen -- which is backed up by numerous articles if you Google "Al Jazeera Ratings".  (Try it, copy that selection and paste it into Google to see for yourself.)

 

In looking at things between the AJA bunch and AT&T, if they want it on U-verse so badly, they could have pulled the lawsuit, renegotiated, and probably had it cleared for air months ago.  AT&T is probably holding them to the contract that wasn't inked too long before AJA took over.  IIRC there was some hubbub over Current's carriage when they took it off U-200, which was because of a new contract.  Anyone up for searching this Forum's archives back a couple years or so?

 

AJA has a potential nationwide placement on U-verse, on ONE channel location across all serviced areas.  They can't get that on cable by any stretch of the imagination.  And as I said before, AT&T was the ONLY provider who took up their "BeIN Sport 3D" and gave it a chance.

 

As to the Hallmark baloney, all they play is RERUNS for the majority of their programming day.  Even on their MOVIE channel.  The ONLY bright spot is when they have one of their movies premiere, and those DO pull an audience.  But if you average those instances into everything else, you can't tell me they're pulling huge ratings for running a Golden Girls episode they've only shown 99 times already.  Even their demographic must tire of them when they find their lips moving along with the dialogue.  And, ummmm .... I thought Hallmark was supposed to do their movie events on ABC.  Haven't seen any of those promoted heavily anytime recently.  Maybe I'm not watching the right national networks, but don't see too many soppy "buy a card from us" ads regularly, either.

 

Just like their cards, Hallmark is overpriced for what they provide.  They are MORE than happy to keep AT&T at bay, because even in the competitive TV landscape, they should have been knocking on AT&T's door long ago, since U-verse is taking more and more customers away from cable.

Message 13 of 18

Re: Al Jazeera America added to Verizon FiOS.

My belief is that if U-verse wants to carry Fox News, One America and The Blaze, then there shouldn't be an issue carrying Al Jazeera America as well.

Message 14 of 18
Scholar

Re: Al Jazeera America added to Verizon FiOS.


@CostaMesaCAGuy wrote:

My belief is that if U-verse wants to carry Fox News, One America and The Blaze, then there shouldn't be an issue carrying Al Jazeera America as well.


Oh here we go .... time for some "fairness" malarky.

 

Let me flip your words to the other side for a minute:

"My belief is that if U-verse wants to carry CNN, HLN, CNN International, Fusion, BBC World News, MSNBC, Al Jazeera America and Bloomberg, then there shouldn't be an issue carrying Fox News, One America and The Blaze as well."

 

Pretty fair there, partisan-wise, eh?  8 to 3, or as currently available, 7 to 1 (soon to be 7 to 2).  Hey, you wanted to go there.

 

ANYWAYS.......

AJAM doesn't really have a good negotiation strategy.  See, when Viacom/MTV Networks wanted to get Centric carried, they could ask for a few pennies per customer because of their other networks which command more -- based on Nielsen numbers.  So in their case, MTV, VH1, CMT, BET, Spike, TV Land, Comedy Central and Nickelodeon -- because they have the widest carriage at "basic cable" subscription level -- pay the bills for all of their digital channels (MTV2, MTV Jams, MTV Tres, MTV Hits, VH1 Classic, VH1 Soul, CMT Pure Country, Nicktoons, NickJr, TeenNick, Logo, BET Gospel, BET Hip Hop, Centric) in the sense that for what MTV itself gets per customer, all 14 digital networks together may command that amount.

 

The same played out for AT&T to bring Fusion onto the lineup.  As Fusion is a "partnership" of ABC News (which is part of the ESPN Mafia) and Univision (which practically owns the Spanish-language broadcast TV market), both of them have enough "pull" to encourage AT&T to carry it, given that it's brand new, AND they'll attempt to cut a low per-customer deal because of all of their other networks.

 

As I said above, someone needs to search this Forum's archives, back about a year or two, and look for a contract renegotiation with Current.  IIRC a new contract was signed not too long before AJAM took over, so all AT&T wants is to follow the contract.  If AlGore and his lawyer partner agreed to renew and do certain things, but then AJAM comes along and says they're not going to follow those terms, then AT&T has every right in the world to go to court and get the court to enforce the contract's provisions.

Message 15 of 18
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