By Phillip Swann
The TV Answer Man, @tvanswerman
DIRECTV and Newsmax have ended their two-month, highly contentious dispute, signing a new carriage agreement that will bring the conservative news channel back to the satcaster’s lineup by Thursday, March 23. (DIRECTV Stream and U-verse will also return Newsmax to their lineups.)
Terms of the new pact were not disclosed.
“This resolution with Newsmax, resolving an all-too-common carriage dispute, underscores our dedication to delivering a wide array of programming and perspectives to our customers,” DIRECTV CEO Bill Morrow said in a joint statement from the companies. “Through our persistent negotiations, we reached a resolution under mutually-agreeable business terms allowing us to deliver the conservative news network at the right value – a reflection of the free market at work.”
“Newsmax recognizes and appreciates that DIRECTV clearly supports diverse voices, including conservative ones,” Newsmax CEO Christopher Ruddy said in the statement. “As a standalone company, DIRECTV helped give Newsmax its start nearly a decade ago as it continues to do with upcoming news networks, which is why we are pleased to reach a mutually beneficial agreement that will deliver our network to DIRECTV, DIRECTV Stream and U-verse customers over the next several years.”
DIRECTV lost Newsmax on January 24 when their old carriage agreement expired. The satcaster claimed that Newsmax wanted “significant” carriage fees to stay on the three TV services. The channel previously provided its signal for free, DIRECTV claimed.
But Newsmax and its GOP supporters in Congress claimed DIRECTV removed the channel because it was conservative. Noting that DIRECTV dropped OAN, another right-leaning news channel, last year, the GOP members said the TV provider was exhibiting a liberal bias.
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— Phillip Swann