Fox and DISH Network came to retransmission terms with days to spare, forestalling the loss of Fox broadcast O&O subscribers, and restoring access to Fox regional sports and basic cable programming for those same subscribers. The deadline for the broadcast contract was Halloween midnight. FCC Chairman Julius Genachowski praised the agreement and urged Fox and Cablevision to follow the example and bring their stalemate to an end. Indeed they did.
It should come as no surprise to anybody familiar with the retransmission negotiation process that terms were kept tightly under wraps. However, both sides were crowing about bringing the existing impasse to an end and preventing the onset of a second.
“After prolonged negotiations to reach a fair deal, we’re pleased to enter into a long term agreement with Fox and to assure our customers that they can continue to enjoy these channels,” said Dave Shull, Senior Vice President of Programming for DISH Network. “We thank our customers, our retail and channel partners, and our employees for their support through these negotiations, which we believe resulted in a fair deal that reinforces DISH Network’s position as the best value in television.”
“I want to thank our partners at DISH Network who worked tirelessly to help us reach a successful conclusion,” said Mike Hopkins, President, Fox Networks Affiliate Sales and Marketing. “This agreement provides a strategic partnership between Fox and DISH to bring the best programming to DISH subscribers.”
Genachowski said, “I am pleased that Fox and DISH have kept in mind their responsibility to protect consumers from blackouts when they negotiate carriage terms. I urge Fox and Cablevision to complete their negotiations and end the impasse that has disrupted service to viewers.”
The two companies didn’t provide terms, but they did detail all of the programming involved in the agreement. The inventory: “The agreement ensures that DISH Network viewers will continue to have access to Fox’s live national and regional coverage of major sporting events including Major League Baseball’s World Series, the NFL on FOX, the NBA, the NHL, college football and basketball, as well as popular entertainment programming on FOX, such as Glee, House, and The Simpsons; Sons of Anarchy and It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia on FX; and the Border Wars and the upcoming Great Migrations on National Geographic Channel.”
They also ran down the local broadcast DMAs that are avoiding any disruption of service whatsoever: “ DISH Network will continue to provide programming from the local Fox and MyNet television stations in the following markets: Atlanta, Austin, Baltimore (MyNet 24 only), Boston, Chicago, Cleveland/Akron, Dallas, Denver, Detroit, Gainesville (FL), Greensboro/Winston-Salem, Houston, Kansas City, Los Angeles, Memphis, Minneapolis, Milwaukee, New York, Orlando, Philadelphia, Phoenix, St. Louis, Salt Lake City, Tampa, and Washington D.C.”