World Series will be heard, not seen

Published 12:00 am Monday, October 29, 2001

[10/27/01]Barring a drive to Jackson, Vicksburg residents will not see the World Series this year, but they will be able to hear it.

“I think it’s a shame and I think it’s unnecessary” that Vicksburg cannot watch the series, said Mike Corley, director of operations at WQBC, AM 1420 in Vicksburg.

Corley said that WQBC radio, which will pick up the ESPN radio feed, will broadcast the series. The Arizona Diamondbacks will play the New York Yankees beginning in Phoenix today.

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Vicksburg lost access to the baseball championship when WDBD in Jackson switched from Fox, the station carrying the series, to Warner Brothers broadcasting.

Since the switch, Jackson cable has added Foxnet, a channel that broadcasts a variety of Fox programming, including the World Series.

Vicksburg Video has not picked up Foxnet, electing to wait out current negotiations between Jackson stations and Fox for rights to Fox broadcasting.

With several stations vying for Fox rights, a deal is likely in the near future, and Vicksburg Video is waiting on that, said general manager Beau Balch.

The wait has left Vicksburg residents without a way to watch the World Series, a fact that angers some.

“I don’t understand the logic behind it,” Corley said. “Like a lot of other people, I was ticked off.”

He said that several people have called his station wanting to voice complaints. “A lot of people are looking to switch to satellite,” he added.

Satellite Video in Vicksburg has received almost 200 calls from people wanting to switch to satellite because of the Fox debacle, said Paul Howell, a Satellite Video salesman.

A Starcomm Satellites employee in Vicksburg said they have also received several calls concerning Fox.

DirecTV does offer a New York Fox station for an extra dollar a month to satellite owners, but getting approval for its use takes 30 to 45 days.

“What we have to do is ask permission of the networks,” said a DirecTV customer service representative. According to FCC regulation, satellite companies must send an application for out-of-area Fox stations privileges to Fox for approval. This paperwork takes time for those who wish to see the World Series, too much time.

World Series game 1 will air on WQBC, AM 1420 in Vicksburg, at 7:15 p.m. today.