Television

Time Warner announces 'family-friendly' cable package

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MUMBAI: Time Warner Cable has been the first mover in offering the a la carte of cable networks with its plan to sell a family package of 15 channels starting next year.

Time Warner's package is priced at $12.99 and includes Boomerang, Discovery Kids, The Science Channel, Disney Channel, Toon Disney, Nick Games and Sports, La Familia, The Weather Channel, C-Span-2, C-Span 3 and Headline News.

The move has come in response to the pressure from the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) that stepped up its push for curbs on indecent programming and adult-skewing networks.

Subscribers of the family tier would have to order a set-top box for $7.95 a month and the most basic cable package, which includes local broadcast and public access channels, for about $12 a month. In total, consumers will pay about $33 a month.

According to media reports, the package also includes less obvious family networks namely the Scripps Television group of channels, DIY Network, its Food Network, and home decorating network, HGTV, as well as the Fox Cable network, Fit TV.

"We selected channels that were G-rated in nature, did not include 'live' entertainment programming and which contained content that was generally perceived as acceptable for the entire family to view," Time Warner Cable CEO Glenn Britt said in a statement.

Hallmark Channel, Discovery Network, and even Cartoon Network, which sports a late night Adult Swim programming block, didn't meet the criteria. Even Nickelodeon was considered objectionable as it broadcasts old television sitcoms at night.

Other cable providers including Comcast, Advance/Newhouse Communications, Insight Communications, Midcontinent Communications and Bresnan Communications also plan to offer programming geared toward families are also expected to announce similar packages.

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