Dish is one of the most popular TV providers in the United States, with millions of subscribers. Unfortunately, an old-fashioned carriage dispute means many Dish customers just lost access to at least one of their local channels.
Cox Media Group, a media conglomerate that owns many radio and TV stations across the United States, has stopped broadcasting select channels on Dish TV due to a disagreement over broadcasting rights. There are nine channels affected, listed below, across nine markets. Sling TV, which is also owned by Dish, hasn’t lost any channels (yet).
- (ABC: WSB) – Atlanta, GA
- (FOX: WFXT) – Boston, MA
- (ABC: WSOC) – Charlotte, NC
- (CBS: WHIO) – Dayton, OH
- (FOX: KLSR) – Eugene, OR
- (FOX: WFOX) – Jacksonville, FL
- (ABC: WFTV) – Orlando, FL
- (NBC: WPXI) – Pittsburgh, PA
- (CBS: KIRO) – Seattle, WA
Dish claims that Cox is seeking “increased rates of nearly 75 percent” in its contract, and wants fees from customers in the affected markets, even when they choose a package from Dish that doesn’t include access to Cox’s local channels. Cox hasn’t issued a public statement.
Understandably, Dish subscribers aren’t happy with the dispute, especially with the NFL season and World Cup ongoing — the World Cup is airing on Fox in the US, and CBS and ABC broadcast many NFL games. The channels are still available for free with an OTA antenna, but signal quality varies by location, so plugging in an antenna isn’t a viable option for everyone.
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