By Phillip Swann
The TV Answer Man –@tvanswerman
TV Answer Man, is there anything new in the DIRECTV and Nexstar fight that has taken our local NBC channel away from us? What’s the latest update on this, please? — Katie, Tampa, Florida.
Katie, DIRECTV on Sunday night lost 159 Nexstar-owned local network affiliates when the carriage agreement between the companies expired. (The blackout also affects DIRECTV Stream and U-verse.) The TV provider refused to pay what Nexstar wanted in carriage fees under a new agreement.
Nexstar has local stations in such large markets as Los Angeles, Chicago, Houston, Kansas City, Philadelphia, Dallas, San Francisco, Washington, D.C., and Denver (and the NBC affiliate in Tampa). To see a list of the Nexstar stations, click here.
What’s the latest in this fee fight, you ask?
The Memphis Commercial Appeal reports that Gary Weitman, Nexstar’s executive vice president and chief communications officer, says his company offered DIRECTV an extension of the old carriage pact so it could continue carrying the stations while negotiations continued.
“He (Weitman) said Nexstar offered DIRECTV an extension to a date of their choosing up to Oct. 31, while the two media companies continue negotiating and they ‘flatly refused,’ the newspaper writes.
And what does DIRECTV think about that?
“We offered an extension beyond football season and they offered one in the middle of football season when it would aggravate fans (if a blackout occurred then),” a DIRECTV spokesman countered.
The October 31 date mentioned by Weitman would fall in the middle of the NFL and college football seasons. A blackout undoubtedly would have upset more subscribers then than the current one in the summer when viewership is at its lowest.
But did DIRECTV make the right decision? You can offer your comments below.
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— Phillip Swann