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Md. cable service required to carry W.Va. station

May 06, 1997

By DAVE McMILLION

Staff Writer, Martinsburg

MARTINSBURG, W.Va. - Antietam Cable service in Hagerstown is being required to add WSHE TV 60, formerly Fox 60 of Martinsburg, to its line-up, station officials said.

Antietam Cable customers did not request the Martinsburg station, which mostly broadcasts "infomercials," but it must be added to the line-up under the federal Cable Act, said Cynthia Garland, spokeswoman for Antietam Cable.

Under the Cable Act, owners of stations can request from federal regulators that they be classified as "must carry" stations in their broadcast area.

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The Cable Act was a voluminous document that outlined how cable companies can operate.

Garland said Antietam Cable recently conducted a survey to allow viewers to choose what type of new channels they would like to see on the system. Customers were allowed to view a variety of channels like ESPN 2, the History Channel and others then mail-in a survey requesting what they would like, Garland said.

But WSHE 60 was not available in time for the survey, Garland said.

Due to the situation, Garland said Antietam Cable believed it needed to explain to viewers why the new channel was added.

David Patterson, chief engineer for WSHE TV 60, declined to comment.

WSHE began broadcasting Aug. 15 last year and is also carried by the CR TV Cable Co. in Berkeley County.

The station broadcasts its paid programming from 8 a.m. to 10 p.m. There is also religious programming on the channel.

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