TV Answer Man, I am so sick and tired of not being able to watch our local Fox station on DIRECTV because greedy billionaires are fighting over money!! Do you know if there’s anything new so they might get a deal soon because this is crazy, crazy, crazy. I hate it!! — Tammy, Wichita Falls, Texas.
Tammy, DIRECTV on October 21 lost 25 local TV stations due to a carriage dispute with their owner, Mission Broadcasting. That means we have now entered day 28 of this fee fight — and there’s no end in sight. (The blackout also affects U-verse and DIRECTV Stream.)
Both companies have maintained their initial positions in the battle. DIRECTV says Mission is asking for excessive fees to carry their stations while the latter says the satcaster is refusing to pay the fair market rate. In other words, nothing new there.
But there is one sliver of news that might be of interest to all Mission viewers who subscribe to DIRECTV.
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The satellite TV company is offering a one-time $10 credit to all affected subscribers. You may not be aware of this credit because it’s buried in the fine print of the satcaster’s DIRECTV Promise site, which is dedicated to informing customers of ongoing carriage fights. If you go to the site and search for disputes in your zip code, a display window pops up with DIRECTV’s statement on the Mission blackout, and a link to a page where you can input your account information and request the $10 credit. (The page says the dispute is with White Knight but ignore that. That’s a different fee fight. The credit also applies to the Mission blackout.)
It’s unclear if you must manually request the credit at the site, or via e-mail or phone, or whether it will automatically be added to your monthly bill. We’ve asked DIRECTV for a clarification and will report back here if we get more information.
Until then, happy viewing and stay safe!
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— Phillip Swann