WLNS-TV, a subsidiary of Lansing, is owned by Nexstar Media Group, a company that, since July 4, has not had a broadcast agreement with AT-T for U-Verse and DirecTV subscribers. ATT owns DirecTV. The companies did not issue financial terms, but stated that their new multi-year contract would allow the channels to return to the AT-Ts DirecTV, AT-T TV and U-Verse systems. The horse-drawn carriage conflict is one of the many high-level twists in their traditional TV package, as the profitability of pay TV changes dramatically in the era of stand-alone streaming services and dramatically uninhibited technology. AT-T had an argument with CBS at the beginning of the summer. Dish Network has resolved a long-running dispute with Univision, but remains at odds with HBO and Fox`s former regional sports networks. Dish also has a large customer base. The company closed the third quarter with 11.42 million pay-TV subscribers, including 8.96 million Subscribers to Dish TV. Dish said the cuts affect 5.4 million subscribers.
In a statement, Nexstar said it was negotiating ”relentlessly and in good faith to secure a multi-year contract acceptable to both parties with Dish, and to offer Dish the same fair market prices it offers to other major distributors with which it has entered into successful negotiations in 2019 and 2020.” ”Our customers want more choice and value, and we are pleased to provide this with this new agreement with Nexstar and its many local broadcasters,” Rob Thun, senior vice president of content and programming at AT-T Communications, said in the statement. ”In the midst of a prolonged pandemic, Tegna is calling for the biggest interest rate hike we have ever seen and deliberately overshadowing its most loyal viewers. We ask Tegna to return its local channels immediately, while we conclude a new agreement and we force Tegna to pay retroactively, which is increasingly high rates to which we finally agree. We share the frustration of our customers, we appreciate their patience and we intend to do everything we can to resolve this issue soon. Dish recently signed a contract with NFL Media to revive NFL Network and NFL RedZone shortly before the start of the 2020/21 season, the latest in the company`s traditionally harsh attitude in such negotiations; He still doesn`t have an agreement with Sinclairr`s RSNs and hasn`t worn HBO since 2018. LANSING – News of a deal reached Thursday between two of the largest media companies in the United States is likely to frustrate AT-T-U-verse and DirecTV subscribers in the Lansing area, without WLNS television since July 4. The agreement will no doubt reassure the various tv network executives who have cited the blackout in recent weeks as a factor in some of their audience ratings.