Home » AT&T »Cablevision (see Altice USA) »Charter Spectrum »Comcast/Xfinity »Competition »Consumer News »Cox »Midco »Online Video »Video » Currently Reading:

ABC Network Putting Video Behind Paywall: Only Paying Cable/U-verse Subscribers Can Watch

WATCH_ABCFree TV? Not quite.

Despite offering free over-the-air television, ABC is putting its programming and stations behind a new paywall that can only be breached by “authenticated” cable and AT&T U-verse subscribers able to prove they already pay to watch.

Watch ABC is the television network’s contribution to the cable industry’s “TV Everywhere” project that offers online viewing options for current cable television subscribers.

Watch ABC now offers on-demand and live viewing of programming aired by the network and six network-owned television stations both at the desktop and through apps for iOS, Android, and the Kindle: New York City’s WABC-TV, Philadelphia’s WPVI, Los Angeles’ KABC, Chicago’s WLS, San Francisco’s KGO, and Raleigh-Durham’s WTVD. (Coming soon: Houston’s KTRK and Fresno’s KFSN.)

During the “online preview,” ABC permitted online viewers within confirmed coverage areas to watch the station nearest them for free. Now, viewers will also have to confirm they are paying cable or AT&T U-verse customers to watch online.

But even then, not everyone will qualify. ABC only has streaming authentication agreements with AT&T U-verse, Cablevision, Charter, Comcast, Cox Communications, and Midcontinent Communications. Watch ABC is currently off-limits to everyone else, including customers of Verizon FiOS, Time Warner Cable, and both satellite services.

ABC has also banned IP addresses known to be associated with anonymous proxy servers. This measure is designed to enforce geographic restrictions to be sure only local viewers can get access to the station in their area.

By this fall, ABC affiliates owned by Hearst are expected to also join Watch ABC’s paywall system.

ABCNews.com announced an experiment with a paywall in the summer of 2010. It never came to fruition.

[flv width=”640″ height=”380″]http://www.phillipdampier.com/video/WPVI Philadelphia Watch ABC in Philadelphia 5-14-13.mp4[/flv]

WPVI in Philadelphia turned over airtime during its evening newscast to self-promote the new ‘Watch ABC’ app and explain how it works. Effective now, it only works with preferred partner cable companies and AT&T U-verse. (Aired: May 14, 2013) (2 minutes)

newest oldest most voted
Notify of
FrankM
Guest
FrankM

I don’t really give a crap about “watchABC”, as my antenna + TiVo does fine for me. But there seems to be a service gap here. People that live in the broadcast area of one of these ABC stations but cannot receive an adequate signal, are still forced to pay for cable to get the channel that the broadcaster ALLEGEDLY PROVIDES TO A CERTAIN GEOGRAPHIC AREA. The WatchABC app COULD have been a way for internet customers in a geographic IP range to receive a usable signal, without paying for basic cable — which is what a broadcaster SHOULD be… Read more »

Search This Site:

Contributions:

Recent Comments:

  • L. Nova: Dan Mcarthy should in jail....
  • L. Nova: The taxpayer is on the hook for these greedy and Wall Street crooked deals....
  • Jason vindas: I hope they closed i try to work with them and they like to hired lazies.fat asses close the doors please...
  • ROBERT THOMAS: I know I'm a little late to the party but I just called the number above. I'm a combined Att/DirecTV customer and they still helped me. Got my extra p...
  • Cindy: I live in Pennsville in Salem County and I guess we don't have a high enough population to get Verizon FiOS. Although like you I also heard that there...
  • Alan Rodin: I have contacted the Simmons Hanly Conroy law firm. They are one of the top class action law firm in the U.S. If you would like to join a class action...
  • Natasha Massey: This happened to us! I called to cancel our service because we’d be moving in one week to a new state. The rep we spoke to over the phone said we ...
  • Mike: Maybe your Line filters are bad. Any phone plugged into a jack will require line filter. Just a suggestion....
  • Vanessa Tomblin: Copper is so obsolete but you can’t explain to some ppl they need to complain to the fcc to get things done!...
  • Kay Tomblin: Exactly they have given stimulus money several times w The buying of frontier from Verizon and now grants which they if used on customers at all are ...
  • Bill Denham: Their service is a joke. It's out more then it's in. The price is not worth it. Total crap service....
  • Deborah: I bought my system once it was under Spectrum . I am pissed . I’m sure there will be a law suit . They can add me to there list . I chose though to g...

Your Account: