Retrans Woes Can’t Stop CBS, Nexstar From Vow Renewal


It’s been one month and two days since the lack of a new retransmission consent agreement led all AT&T-owned consumer television services — AT&T TV NOW, U-Verse and DirecTV — to “black out” all Nexstar Media Group-owned stations.

It’s been two-and-a-half weeks since the three AT&T services also started to “black out” all owned-and-operated TV stations owned by CBS Corporation, also due to the absence of a new retransmission fee agreement.

The dual duels have impacted viewers of CBS stations in some 56 designated market areas.

Now, in a show of unity that could further muddle their respective negotiations with AT&T, CBS and Nexstar have recommitted to their current affiliation ties.

A multi-year agreement, announced Tuesday, sees the renewal of CBS network affiliations for Nexstar stations in 15 markets. This is comprised of 5% of the U.S. audience and nearly 6 million households — excluding, at least temporarily, any homes where DirecTV is the TV services provider and where Nexstar owns the CBS affiliate.

Nexstar owns and/or operates CBS affiliates in 39 markets.

The new agreement extends all CBS-Nexstar affiliation agreements to a total of 19 stations that were set to expire this year.

Nexstar Media Group President/CEO Perry Sook said, “We are delighted to extend our affiliation agreement with CBS … Together, CBS and Nexstar deliver great entertainment and information to viewers and an excellent platform for marketing solutions for local and national advertisers.”

CBS Corp. President of Television Networks Distribution Ray Hopkins said, “This agreement marks the second marketplace distribution deal CBS has reached in just the last week and a half, coming to fair terms with another great partner who understands the value ‘America’s Most Watched Network’ brings to the viewers we both serve.”

The agreement includes renewals for these Nexstar-owned CBS affiliates — all of which are not available on AT&T TV NOW, U-Verse or DirecTV at this time:

  • WSPA in Greenville-Spartanburg, S.C.
  • WIAT in Birmingham, Ala.
  • KRQE in Albuquerque, N. Mex.
  • WIVB in Buffalo, N.Y.
  • WPRI in Providence, R.I.
  • WKRG in Mobile, Ala.
  • WJTV in Jackson, Miss.
  • WBTW in Myrtle Beach, S.C.
  • WJHL in Johnson City, Tenn. (Tri-Cities DMA)
  • WANE in Ft. Wayne, Ind.
  • WNCT in Greenville, N.C.
  • KELO in Sioux Falls, S.D.
  • WRBL in Columbus, Ga.
  • WHLT in Hattiesburg, Miss.
  • KCLO in Rapid City, S.D.

Also impacted are KRQE’s satellite stations KBIM in Roswell, N.M. and KREZ in Durango, Col.; and KELO’s satellite stations KPLO in Reliance, S.D. and KDLO in Florence, S.D.


  1. What about the other affiliates? When will those be addressed? Why weren’t they included? Seems like a half a#@ job of negotiating.

  2. Why aren’t the affected stations promoting OTA reception of their signals? You don’t have to subscribe to satellite or cable to get a ton of programming free of charge. Not only are the main channels available but many sub-channels are offering programming not available on satellite or cable.

  3. In my market, we are promoting OTA. So much so, that even Target and Walmart have moved digital antennas to kiosks by the cash registers. So something must be working.

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