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KCWQ-LP channel 2 is a low-powered CW affiliate in Palm Springs, California, operated by Gulf-California Broadcast Company (a wholly owned subsidiary of the News-Press & Gazette Company of St. Joseph, Missouri), owners of KESQ-TV and other radio and TV outlets. KCWQ can also be seen on KESQ's digital signal on channel 42.3 / 52.3 (PSIP 2.3), and on Time Warner Cable channel 5.

Cable carriage issue

Between KCWQ's launch on in September 2006 and April 21, 2007, KCWQ (and The CW) was not available to subscribers of TWC's Coachella Valley systems, due to a carriage dispute.

As KCWQ-LP was launched, Gulf-California explained that they had requested the station be assigned KCWB's cable designation (channel 5) and came to several agreements to that effect with the local Time Warner Cable office, which were then all successively vetoed by TWC's head office in Stamford, Connecticut.

Interestingly, The CW is 50% owned by TWC's parent company, Time Warner; thus, by blocking cable carriage for the network in this market, the company is ostensibly hurting itself.

Without an agreement in place, Gulf-California was suggesting cable subscribers wishing to watch The CW use an over-the-air antenna and tune to channel 2. The company also pointed out that the channel is available on Dish Network.

Instead of KCWQ and The CW, Time Warner Cable substituted Classic Arts Showcase on cable channel 5. In the early days of the dispute, Time Warner also ran a ticker that explained the problem:

The CW Network is not available at this time. Despite continued talks, we have not been able to reach an agreement for carriage of this Network. We will continue to negotiate and remain hopeful that an agreement will be reached soon.

In April 2007, Gulf-California and Time Warner Cable reached an agreement that would finally add KCWQ to the cable line-up on channel 5, effective 12:01AM on April 21, 2007.


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