While retransmission battles between Fox and DISH Network and Fox and Cablevision were grabbing headlines, a smaller negotiation between DISH and television group Belo Corporation was settled quietly – although the pair still have to take the tentative out of the agreement.
The current Belo/DISH contract expired as October transitioned into November.
Mike Devlin, President/GM of Belo’s WFAA-TV in Dallas-Fort Worth, issued a statement to his station’s viewers. He said, “I am happy to report we have reached a tentative agreement with DISH Network that keeps WFAA programming on their system for years to come. ‘Tentative” means we have to hammer out a few details, but I am confident those things can be worked out in short order.”
Devlin continued, “The management of WFAA appreciates the calls and e-mails from viewers providing their viewpoint on this negotiation, and especially for the support many of you gave us. While we very much regret the uncertainty this has caused our DISH viewers, our commitment to serving North Texas communities remains strong.”
The agreement is good for all Belo stations, which number 15 counting WFAA, located in various US markets.
RBR-TVBR observation: Here is an example of the typical retransmission negotiation. It goes down to the wire, but is settled with no loss of service to subscribers. The system is not broken. And even if it is broken, we have seen nothing to suggest that a government-imposed system would work any better.