ABC Will Live-Stream the Oscars Telecast — in Selected Cities (As David Letterman Would Say, ‘We Just Hope to God Your City Has Been Selected); Here’s the List of Cities … Oh, and There’s One Other Catch, Too

Feb 28, 2014  •  Post A Comment

ABC will live-stream the Academy Awards ceremony Sunday, marking the first time it has done so. But the Los Angeles Times’ Company Town reports that the service has significant limitations as only eight markets will be given the stream, and viewers must have a subscription to one of a few pay-TV services to get it.

Viewers who are interested in streaming the event will need to activate the “Watch ABC” digital application and verify that they are a subscriber to one of the services, the story notes. The live-streaming rights are only available to those pay-TV services that have recently entered new distribution deals with ABC and parent Walt Disney Co., the report points out.

According to the story, "In addition to Comcast, AT&T and Verizon, the streaming service will be available to customers of Cablevision, Cox Communications, Charter Communications and Midcontinent Communications in the eight markets where ABC owns the local ABC affiliate station."

Digital streaming rights weren’t included in older agreements, the piece notes.

The markets where streaming will be available are Los Angeles, New York, Chicago, Philadelphia, San Francisco, Houston, Raleigh-Durham and Fresno.

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  1. ABC’s need to control online access to its programming seems like overkill and counterproductive. Anyone can watch their product for free over the air. What makes it more valuable when viewed on other platforms? I’d think ABC would want any viewer it can get, no matter where the viewing is occurring.

  2. It’s likely that ABC doesn’t have the rights to allow digital streaming in markets other than those posted above as they are the only markets where ABC owns the stations, the rest of the ABC stations across the country have different(independent) ownership.

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