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Time Warner Cable Wins Exclusive Marketing Deal With N.Y. Apartment Complexes

Phillip Dampier March 18, 2013 Competition, Consumer News, Time Warner Cable 4 Comments

twcGreenTime Warner Cable has signed exclusive marketing deals with two apartment complexes on Staten Island that will give the cable company the sole right to pitch television, Internet, and phone services to residents.

Markham Gardens on the borough’s northern shore near Port Richmond and Park Lane at Seaview, a senior living community located in the Emerson Hill neighborhood, represent the first ever exclusive marketing deals the cable company has signed on Staten Island, and will probably not be the last.

markhamThe deal will not prevent Verizon’s FiOS fiber-to-the-home network from being available to residents in the future, but such marketing agreements can discourage residents from signing up with a competitor.

A growing number of apartment complexes in the country are signing exclusive marketing arrangements with cable operators in return for financial incentives. The agreements often bundle the cost of a renter’s cable service into the monthly rent or include it as a mandatory amenities fee. When a cable customer understands they are paying for cable service whether they want it or not, it makes it difficult for competitors to convince renters to pay for both cable service and services from the phone or satellite company.

Other types of marketing deals allow the cable operator to promote itself on an apartment complex website or through exclusive door-hangers or other marketing opportunities denied to competitors.

Currently there are 4 comments on this Article:

  1. elfonblog says:

    Ugh. I hate when landlords do this. It should be illegal. Taken to the extreme, imagine a landlord dictating the type of car you drive or a dress code the residents must follow? The management has probably considered a steep “connection fee” on top of that monthly “amenities fee”, like I once encountered when trying to get my phone connected in an apartment.

    • Scott says:

      As far as Satellite goes there was always rules by the FCC prohibiting landlords from outright refusing to allow Dish installation. They could always make your life miserable over it, or refuse areas of the building and drilling, but not if you had an immediate access point like a deck with LoS.

      http://www.fcc.gov/guides/over-air-reception-devices-rule

      • txpatriot says:

        The FCC also prohibits telephone providers from signing exclusive service arrangements with apartment landlords. But they took great pains to say exclusive “marketing” arrangements were OK. I would guess most residents could not tell the difference and will assume T-W is their only choice for telephone in their apartment.

        • The end run around this is to bundle the cost of the service into your rent or make you pay it as an amenities fee through your lease agreement. Technically you could reject the service, but you will still end up paying for it whether you want it or not.

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