Dish and CBS Corp. renewal talks quickly devolve into blackout


The service blackout spans 18 cities, some of them major ones, and will result in those customers being unable to watch Thanksgiving's National Football League game unless something changes in the very near future.

Dish Network stated: "Dish reported that CBS Corporation chose to blackout Dish customers' access to 28 local channels in 18 markets across 26 states".

The two sides are of course fighting over how much CBS is charging Dish Network for the rights to carry its programming.

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The service blackout affects about 3 million Dish Network customers, many of whom are understandably upset about being used as leverage in the latest business squabble.

WCCO went dark on Dish a little before 2 this morning.

The impasse comes during a busy television viewing week, which includes on CBS an NFL game between the Los Angeles Chargers and Dallas Cowboys scheduled on Thanksgiving and college football games Friday and Saturday.

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"Those desired increases come as Dish customers are watching less CBS, with average viewership down 20 percent over the past three years", Dish said in a statement.

"We are actively working to negotiate an agreement that promptly returns this content to Dish's programming lineup", Warren Schlichting, DISH's executive vice president of marketing, programming and media sales, said in a statement in the Times's story. Our customers are clear: they don't want to pay a CBS tax.

There will be no KDKA morning news for Dish Network customers, as a contract between parent network CBS and the satellite TV provider expired early Tuesday morning. "It's regrettable and unnecessary that CBS is bringing its greed into the homes of millions of families this Thanksgiving". These customers span more than a dozen cities, including major ones like Chicago, Los Angeles, Seattle, Baltimore, New York, San Francisco, Denver, Miami, and Philadelphia.

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Local viewers can still watch WCCO if they use rabbit ears.