The Carlisle Mosquito Online

Friday, October 1, 1999


Coming soon to Carlisle: new cable provider

Relief may be on the way for residents who have been dissatisfied with the quality and extent of the cable service provided to the town by Cablevision.

Cablevision Systems Corporation announced on Tuesday that the company will pursue "strategic alternatives" for operation of its cable television systems in the Greater Boston area, which includes its franchise in Carlisle, and concentrate on their more profitable operations in the New York City area. The company plans to identify new ownership of the Massachusetts properties by mid-November.

John M. Urban, vice president of government and public affairs for Cablevision of Boston, has written to the town of Carlisle to assure subscribers that the company is ready to support service operations during the transition. The announcement from the home office "has no effect on the franchise commitments Cablevision has made to [Carlisle]."

The business section of Tuesday's Boston Globe speculated that the most likely candidate to buy out Cablevision's assets here is MediaOne, which operates several MetroWest franchises highly praised by their subscribers. Besides TV service, MediaOne provides high-speed Internet access via cable modems.

In Carlisle's on-going cable TV survey, residents expressed less outrage about Cablevision's TV delivery than about the absence of cable-modem service here. Respondents like to point to the "model town" of Billerica, where MediaOne provides "higher tech" service that includes megabit-speed connections to the web. If MediaOne should buy out Cablevision's franchise, the dreams of many Carlisle residents might come true. But that's a big "if," and residents will have to wait and see.

Paul Gill submitted this article on behalf of the cable TV advisory committee.

1999 The Carlisle Mosquito