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DIRECTV: Why Your CBS Station Is Still Blacked Out

Tilted view of satellite dish on white multi-story house --- Image by © Royalty-Free/Corbis

Q. I don’t understand why my CBS local station hasn’t come back on DIRECTV. I read that DIRECTV and CBS signed a new agreement. So why isn’t my CBS back on? — Robert, Fresno, California. 

Robert, DIRECTV and CBS last week did sign a new carriage agreement, but it only covers local stations owned by CBS. These are in 17 markets, which does not include Fresno.

Your local CBS station in Fresno, KGPE-TV, is owned by Nexstar, which is still fighting with DIRECTV (and its owner, AT&T) over how much money it should get for its signals. The two sides have been unable to reach a new agreement since the old one expired on July 3.

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Since then, DIRECTV has been without more than 120 Nexstar-owned local stations, including ones affiliated with ABC, CBS, NBC and Fox.

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If you’re not familiar with how network affiliation works, this is probably a bit confusing to you. So let me explain.

The overwhelming majority of local network stations are not actually owned by the network. Independent companies, such as Nexstar, purchase local stations and then sign affiliation deals with the networks, which allows them to air their primetime, news and sports programming. The local stations fill the rest of the day’s lineup with their own programming, most of it locally produced.

The network affiliation arrangement is a good deal for the local stations, and the networks, but it requires pay TV providers to secure carriage agreements with several different owners of local programming. This is why a cable or satellite service may be without local stations in certain markets; they’ve been unable to come to terms with every local station owner.

Robert, I hope that helps. We will continue to monitor the DIRECTV-Nexstar fee fight and will report back here if the blackout ends.

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The TV Answer Man is veteran journalist Phillip Swann who has covered the TV technology scene for more than two decades. He will report on the latest news and answer your questions regarding new devices and services that are changing the way you watch television.

40 Comments on DIRECTV: Why Your CBS Station Is Still Blacked Out

  1. natasha R roberts // August 12, 2019 at 10:56 am // Reply

    We have been without our local channels since July 4th. I am very frustrated and discussed with nextstar and DirecTV. We pay an extremely high monthly rate to have DirecTV and can’t watch our local channels. I have called and complained and nothing is being done to do a price adjustment on our bill. We are in the process of finding a new TV subscriber to change to and make sure we have our local channels. We have been customers of DirecTV for over 16 years. Such a shame these two companies can’t get it together!!!!

    • I’ve been going through the same direct tv sent me a antenna it worked for a bit then the past 2 wks no ch10 ABC again 90% of my shows are on ABC . with direct tv 16 yrs also now leaving it. They don’t care. Personally I think they’re going to be claiming bankruptcy.

  2. Laura Rogers // August 12, 2019 at 11:08 am // Reply

    Well we are the people that are not getting updates on what is going on. All I get is that same annorying message. When I tune into channel17 If direct is not getting CBS back just let your customers know this. So we all can decide on what we should do. Many have already left att and directtv.

  3. DirecTV and Nexstar need to learn how to play nice and quit acting like children. Agree to terms and quit holding the subscribers as hostages. We are too far from the broadcast antennas, so we can not get the signal “over the air”. Not many options for us.

  4. Exactly we are paying for a service we are not receiving hopefully some high powered attorneys willl take them on for us little people that don’t matter to the big companies ..

  5. Elizabeth Buchanan // August 12, 2019 at 12:26 pm // Reply

    Yea I can fix the problem! Get rid of direct tv!!!!!++++

  6. Ronald Cousens // August 12, 2019 at 12:37 pm // Reply

    Why is mine still blacked out they struck deal with affiliate in my area have it on my phone again not my tv

  7. Jerry Anderson // August 12, 2019 at 12:42 pm // Reply

    If I have to get one station somewhere else I will get them all. Greed is all this is!!

  8. Would like a class action against Directv!

  9. Marilyn Metcalfe // August 12, 2019 at 1:24 pm // Reply

    How do we contact Nexstar to protest this ASSININE “FEUD”? Nexstar in Albuquerque NM controls our content. As a senior in a Good Samaritan apt. bldg with no choice of carriers & on a limited budget I’m caught between a rock & a hard place!! LITERALLY!!! Obviously these companies care only about their bottom line & NOT their customers!!! I’m missing MANY of my favorite current programs & reruns, & TV is the ONLY entertainment I can afford!! Can’t the FFC step in? PLEASE HELP!!!!

  10. As soon as our contract is up I’m dumping DirectTV. I signed a contract with them against my better judgement because AT&T was not available in my area.

    Since they are not producing what I originally signed up for I consider that a breach of contract. I’ll hang in until our contract is up then goodbye DirectTV.

  11. When is NBC going to be back up in running in Tampa,FL it has been six weeks and I’m missing out on some special shoes.

  12. Richard Karlaza // August 12, 2019 at 2:47 pm // Reply

    If we have direct tv, what other way can we get nbc, abc, & CBS channels?

  13. I agree with every body’s comments. I also have been a long time customer of directv. They need to compensate for the lost channels. I have called several times and they just passify me by saying it will end soon. Come on, it’s been over 2 – 3 months. I too am seeking another alternative!! Thanks for nothing directv/AT&T. You’re going to lose more money by losing customers!!

  14. DirecTv will send you an antenna which should give you access to the interrupted channels until they are up and running in your area. They are free and do not have to be returned

  15. I left a comment, where did it go

    • Tina M Doucette // August 12, 2019 at 7:45 pm // Reply

      I received my antenna today and still can’t see CBS, they told me the signal is to weak.. just makes no sense to me

  16. Scott DeCamp // August 12, 2019 at 5:07 pm // Reply

    In the end directv, CBS and nexstar will all the money they want, always do!!! The customers will take the bite, again. With no compensationn for the time we still paid and received nothing. Just as well be dealing with the mob…… Oh wait!!!!!!

  17. Kathryn McNeely // August 12, 2019 at 5:09 pm // Reply

    I should not have to buy an antenna to solve this problem with not being able to get CBS and ABC. We are paying Directv to have these stations ÷ others.
    dika9836@gmail.com. Kathy

  18. Why should I continue to get full bill when not getting CBS

  19. Karen Wines // August 12, 2019 at 5:48 pm // Reply

    What about ABC??

  20. It’s time to quit directv and att and move on they aren’t trying hard enough to get our channels back

  21. Sonny Jones // August 12, 2019 at 6:35 pm // Reply

    DirectTvNow still does not have CBS from West Palm Beach back either.

  22. Jonathan A Wildey // August 12, 2019 at 6:38 pm // Reply

    Make a deal I wanna watch my Steelers.

  23. Arlene jackson // August 12, 2019 at 6:52 pm // Reply

    Here in texarkana, tx too, still havent got nbc. why are we having to deal with this? All this streaming stuff you have to have the internet and pay for using your data while still paying direct TV for the channel!!!! Really screwing us!!!!

  24. Verna Greene // August 12, 2019 at 6:55 pm // Reply

    Hi thank you for your response about this, I am in Las Vegas my CBS has been off for over 3 months, it seems❗️
    I am annoyed and angry enough about this carrier or who ever it is that is this selfish!! I am looking into leaving Direct TV AT&T for someone that doesn’t deal with NexStar!!! I have called Direct TV several times inquiring and complaining.
    I spoke with a supervisor demanded answers and asked them to note, that i was “canceling” my service if CBS was not restored. He “lied” to me and told me that CBS would be back on that next day. Credited my account $10…… I am done ✅

  25. Tina M Doucette // August 12, 2019 at 7:43 pm // Reply

    Direct tv will lose customers if the blackout doesn’t be up and running very soon cause it’s football season plus the stories that people loves to watch..

  26. Karen Bullinger // August 12, 2019 at 7:52 pm // Reply

    Our area had CBS this morning and this afternoon is was NOT on again. What is the up with that?

  27. Sharon Claxton // August 12, 2019 at 8:15 pm // Reply

    I live in East Texas. We have not lost CBS, but we have lost NBC. Any word on this? I am disgusted and thinking of switching to Dish network.

  28. When my contract is over I’m done.

  29. Linda Wallace // August 12, 2019 at 9:43 pm // Reply

    Still no channel 12 CBS in Brookhaven MS

  30. Mary Gallagher // August 12, 2019 at 10:00 pm // Reply

    No CBS on Directtv Now in Cleveland

  31. I quit DirecTv and stream Hulu. I have it all except PBS and I stream that separately on Roku.

  32. Claudie Tyler // August 13, 2019 at 12:47 am // Reply

    I live in Las Vegas NV I have been with the DirecTV for over 20 years this is ridiculous if I can’t get CBS in the next two weeks then i will switch over to cable.

  33. MARTIN KONTNIER // August 13, 2019 at 1:56 am // Reply

    Screw Directv.

  34. Butch Meyer // August 13, 2019 at 3:09 am // Reply

    So, in other words, it’s all about corporate greed and has absolutely NOTHING to do with living up to DirecTV’s promise to deliver local area TV stations’ programming, right? A clear breach of contract! NOT what we as subscribers signed up for. Until this issue is resolved, I will be remitting a portion of my monthly fee. I will keep
    AT&T / DIRECTV abreast of any developments.

  35. Awesome bought a 29.00 dollar thing at Best Buy get a lot of stations Free. All locals free. Keep going cable and work yourself out of a job. Like Ma Bell did with the home phone.

  36. Bought 29 dollar device and now for free a lot of stations including all local channels
    Keep it up and loose all your business.

  37. Give all your customers a refund for services not provided in our contracts. Why should we pay for
    Something we are not getting

  38. Verna Greene // August 13, 2019 at 11:25 pm // Reply

    CBS is still not on in Las Vegas 3 days after a DTV Supervisor Lied to me and said it would be restored the next day. Very unsatisfactory experience as an avid consumer!

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