AT&T and CBS brought an end to the nearly three-week blackout of CBS channels on DirecTV and DirecTV Now with a multiyear deal.
What We Know:
- All CBS channels have been blacked out for nearly three weeks on DIRECTV, DIRECTV NOW and AT&T U-verse in Boston, Los Angeles, Atlanta, New York, Minneapolis, Detroit, Miami, Denver, Sacramento, Pittsburgh and Baltimore; The blackout is a result of months-long negotiations with AT&T which has left CBS feeling economically undervalued. CBS wrote in a press release that the standing AT&T deal reached in 2012 closed July 20, and after long CBS efforts to avoid the blackout AT&T still failed to agree to fair market terms for CBS content and declined further extension of the original contract.
- CBS and AT&T announced yesterday in a joint statement the 20-day blackout has ended as the two companies have reached a deal, apologizing for the inconvenience. The multi-year content carriage agreement allows AT&T to once again carry CBS-owned stations and content including the retransmission in the cities involved in the blackout. “CBS and AT&T regret any inconvenience to their customers and viewers and thank them for their patience,” the joint statement read.
- Despite the joint response, CBS has still wholeheartedly blamed AT&T’s greedy negotiating for the blackout. “This is just the latest example in AT&T’s long and clear track record of lettings its consumers pay the price for its aggressive tactics to get programmers to accept below market terms…CBS is simply looking to receive fair value for its popular programming,” CBS wrote in their press release.
- CBS is currently “America’s Most-Watched Network” carrying shows like The Big Bang Theory, the NCIS brand, the Good Wife and many of summer’s biggest reality shows like Love Island and Big Brother.
- Channel blackouts have grown more common this year than ever; the American Television Alliance reported that this CBS blackout is the third programming blackout in the past two weeks and the 213th of 2019, up from only eight in 2010. Last year the country saw 164 major blackouts; The next anticipated large TV blackout could come from Dish negotiations with Fox Corporation.
CBS will return on AT&T for now but TV warn the trend will continue and viewers will continue to experience more and more TV blackouts.