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August 21, 2019 6:55 am  #1


AT&T/Direct TV- CBS Carriage Fee Dispute

It was recently reported  that AT&T and CBS had signed a multi year agreement to restore the network's programming via local affilliates. As I understand things, [or maybe I don't] the sattelite and cable companies negotiate retransmission agreements withe four networks. Then a separate agreement is worked out with the owners of the local stations. While this agreement has brought smiles to the majority of CBS viewers south of the border, there are still many frowns in markets where the CBS station is owned by Nexstar. WIVB in Buffalo and WROC in Rochester remain unavailable to Direct TV subscribers in those markets.                                                                                    While we here in Canada grumble about simsub, no access to ESPN or the multitude of excellent American sub-channels. Americans must get nervous every five or six years when the re-transmission agreements are about to expire. Gee, Which major network do I lose this time?  Yes I know an antenna is always an option for most people. What about viewers in rural, hilly, forested or mountainous areas. Antennas are not an option for them. They are stuck with Direct-TV or Dish.

 

August 21, 2019 7:45 am  #2


Re: AT&T/Direct TV- CBS Carriage Fee Dispute

AT&T, which now owns DirectTV and Time Warner's HBO, is playing dirty with its competitor Dish Network. HBO has been off Dish for at least half a year and there are no signs that it's ever coming back. It's the first time HBO has ever been pulled from any major distributor in its decades-long existence. Of course, AT&T has no desire to help its rival and is making outrageous demands for the return of the signal, including forcing people who don't want the pay service to fork over money for it anyway - at an increased cost, of course.

As bad as cable and rights can be here, the system in the U.S. can be equally terrible, with CBS almost always playing hardball with distributors - it's been pulled off countless systems over the years while it demands ever higher and higher compensation for its signals. And that inevitably results in higher prices for subscribers as the costs are passed along. (Funny how it alway seems to happen just as the NFL season is starting or when CBS has the rights to the Super Bowl.) 

And now that greed-monger Disney owns Fox, you can only wonder how long it will be before those channels go dark on a number of systems. 

I've followed Dish CEO Charlie Ergen for a long time. He's an interesting guy in that he refuses to give in to this kind of blackmail even at the risk of losing customers - and the HBO thing has been costly. 

As bad as the system is here, the U.S. one has its flaws as well. Can you imagine what would happen if Bell pulled CTV off of Rogers unless their subs paid more and more for the "privilege" of watching it? The CRTC would justifiably have a fit.

Whatever happened to the day when you could just watch television? 

 

August 21, 2019 8:53 am  #3


Re: AT&T/Direct TV- CBS Carriage Fee Dispute

For the record RA, FOX has the rights to this year's SB. CBS in 2021 and NBC in 2022.                                               Can you imagine if the next Federal Government is Conservative [hopefully] and they decided to significantly cut funding to the CBC in their first budget? The Mother Corporation's response is to pull their channels from all Canadian service providers until funding cuts are restored to their previous levels. Even if the reduction could only be considered a "snip" the CBC would portray it as an "appallingly large slash" Cue the handringing by the usual mostly left wing suspects.                                                                                                                                                                          One more thought. Can you imagine how much programming PBS could purchase or create with the CBC's funding? No more Goldie Gardner expressing 150 different ways of Please Send Money

     Thread Starter
 

August 21, 2019 9:28 am  #4


Re: AT&T/Direct TV- CBS Carriage Fee Dispute

mace wrote:

For the record RA, FOX has the rights to this year's SB. CBS in 2021 and NBC in 2022.

Sorry I wasn't clear on that. What I meant was whenever they have the rights to the Big Game, it starts. It's happened almost every year that CBS gets the Super Bowl. So expect the blackmail to start again in a few years.

By the way, WIVB and WNLO, the channels affected by the DirecTV dispute, have been running endless crawls over the air for weeks, urging viewers to call AT&T to demand their favourite stations be restored. Don't know how many actually have, but it doesn't appear to have done much good. The pressure is sure to ramp up as the football - and new prime time- seasons get set to begin. In the meantime, both sides are playing hardball and - surprise! - viewers are the losers.  

mace wrote:

Can you imagine if the next Federal Government is Conservative [hopefully] and they decided to significantly cut funding to the CBC in their first budget? The Mother Corporation's response is to pull their channels from all Canadian service providers until funding cuts are restored to their previous levels.

Not that it would ever be allowed to pull its programming off cable or satellite, but what would happen if that scenario took place and no one missed them?

 

August 21, 2019 12:02 pm  #5


Re: AT&T/Direct TV- CBS Carriage Fee Dispute

Disney owns Fox studios but not the broadcast operations. The Fox network(s) & o&o's are still owned by the Murdoch family.