Two Southern California cable providers, Cox Cable and Charter Communications, have downgraded KCET after the station finally completed its separation from PBS yesterday. Both providers booted KCET from coveted VHF channel positions in order to ensure the region’s new PBS affiliate PBS Socal could maintain a space in the upper tier. KCET is now on channel 309 on Charter and on channel 129 on Cox.
KCET prexy/CEO Al Jerome said the station accepted the move in order to continue to clear its multicast channels — which now include KCET Kids and Family and MHz Worldview — on those two cable operators.
“In an effort to improve public media service for our viewers, KCET made a strategic decision to retain its digital multicast channels, which will be KCET Kids and Family, Vme and MHz Worldview,” Jerome said. “This has impacted our channel positions with some cable services. Our new digital channel strategy empowers us to pursue our mission to offer a wide range of programs that feature diverse perspectives.”
Jerome noted that KCET remains in the same channel position on most local cable providers, such as Time Warner and Comcast, while its position on DirecTV and Dish also remains unchanged.