The Word Network, which airs programming from Bishop T.D. Jakes, Joyce Meyer, Bishop Paul S. Morton and more, is being dropped by Comcast in key markets.
To stop what the religious media company is calling an “unjust removal” it has filed a complaint with the FCC against Comcast, Xfinity and NBC.
The Word Network is self-described as “the largest African American religious network in the world reaching 3 billion people worldwide.” But that reach may be severely limited if Jennifer Gaiski, senior vice president of content acquisition for the world’s largest media corporation, has anything to say about it.
In a press announcement, The Word Network executives claim when Gaiski was asked to explain the removal, she said, “because we are Comcast, and we can.”
With Comcast’s more than 23 million customers in the United States, 26 TV stations and 20 cable channels, The Word Network needs the cable provider to continue the broad reach it has enjoyed for the past 17 years.
“The black church community takes high offense to the dismissive actions of Comcast cable to off the most reputable vehicle of the black church without cause,” said Jamal Bryant, pastor of Empowerment Temple in Baltimore, in a press announcement obtained by EEW Magazine.
The preacher, who is also a host on the network, continued, “This would never be done to a white Christian network without provocation. We will not go away quietly.”
The Word Network, that was co-founded by Kevin Adell, a white man, and his father, the late Franklin Adell, in February 2000, gives voice to many influential African-American denominations like COGIC, Pentecostal Assemblies of the World, Full Gospel Baptist, Global United Fellowship and more through Comcast’s systems.
In a press release sent out by Mort Meisner, the media representative for The Word Network, the FCC complaint was spelled out in detail.
The Word Network has asked the FCC to investigate:
- The unjust removal of The Word Network
- Too much emphasis on stock performance versus meeting the demands of their customers; massive amounts of customer complaints, meeting customer demands, treatment of customers and high prices
- Since the 2011 merger, they have been focused on the form rather than the substance of the diversity rules and actually reducing diversity. They are playing fast and loose with the rules.
- Not enough African Americans in key management positions
- Bringing independent diverse directors to the Comcast board
- Excessive officer compensation
- NBC has shown egregious behavior with their NBC affiliates on retransmission agreements
- Out of the 38 shows that NBC produces only one is sensitive to the African American community
SOURCE: EEW Magazine News – George O’Connor