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View Diary: Hey Pat, the last time I checked I haven't murdered, raped or stolen from anyone (81 comments)

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  •  They would love to, but they can't. (11+ / 0-)

    700 Club kills them from building a decent late-night audience.  When Cartoon Network switches over to Adult Swim, they are able to program a block of shows that teens and young adults watch.  ABC Family generally has good ratings for teens up to 11 when the 700 club airs and the ratings crash.  The reason is contractual.

    ABC Family used to be Pat Robertson's network.  It started as an evangelical Christian televangelist network and kept on expanding its programing to other things becoming The Family Channel.  Eventually the IRS became involved since a major TV channel was essentially declaring itself to be a tax free religious channel while the bulk of the programming was not so Robertson sold the network to ... wait for it... Fox (of course).  That sale had some requirements in it, namely that the channel must air 700 club twice each day and that it must retain "family" in its name.  Eventually Fox sold it to ABC but those same requirements are still in place.  

    The only action ABC can take unilaterally is to shut down the channel and create a new one.  However, under the way cable channel deals are negotiated, the new channel would not have enough leverage to be placed in the basic service tiers where it is now.  ABC/Disney would have to threaten the cable companies by holding Disney and ESPN hostage to try to force the new channel into a favorable position leading to a giant corporate fight where the only real loser is the average person who would definitely end up having to pay even more for basic service.

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