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WildBlue-1/AMC-18 Launch a Success

SATELLITE -- WildBlue Communications and SES Americom are both pleased to see the successful launch of an Arianespace Ariane 5 space craft carrying the WildBlue-1 and AMC-18 satellites. AMC-18 is an all C-band satellite designed for full North American coverage including the Caribbean from 105 degrees west; WildBlue-1 will provide Ka-band spot beam capacity over the contiguous United States.

PROGRAMMING -- Because Cablevision and Time Warner Cable don't have NFL Network carriage deals, many subscribers in the New York/New Jersey area will not be able to see the surprise Rutgers football team take on Kansas State in the Texas Bowl on Dec. 28. However, Verizon just signed a deal with NFLN and is offering the game to its FiOS television customers and to it's DIRECTV subscribers. According to Verizon, Comcast analog subs will not be able to receive the game either.

PERSONNEL -- EchoStar Satellite named DAVID GOODFRIEND as vice president of law and public policy primarily responsible for representing the company before the U.S. House and Senate. Goodfriend has been legal director, director of business development and director of programming at EchoStar, the company said.

MULTIPLATFORM -- Southern Entertainment Television (TheSET) launched its enhanced redesigned website last week containing video previews of the company's channels, corporate information, a press and media room and a special section for artists. Officials said the redesign is part of a campaign to improve the image of the company and better represent its programming options. To view the new site visit http://www.theset.net.

CONFERENCES -- The Consumer Electronics Association said key satellite TV and cable executives will speak next month at the Consumer Electronics Show and its Pipelines Power Panel. DIRECTV President and CEO CHASE CAREY and EchoStar Chairman and CEO CHARLIE ERGEN will be at the event, which is scheduled for Monday, Jan. 8 at the Las Vegas Hilton Theater. Also on the panel will be Time Warner Cable's GLENN BRITT, PAT ESSER of Cox Communications and VIRGINIA RUESTERHOLZ of Verizon Telecom.

www.SkyReport.com - used with permission
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