ABC Family, DirecTV Reach Deal

ABC Family averted being dropped from DirecTV Inc.'s lineup next week after
reaching an early Wednesday-afternoon distribution deal with the
direct-broadcast satellite company.

In a joint statement, the parties announced the completion of a "broad
agreement that ensures the continued carriage of many of [The Walt Disney Co.'s]
networks, including ABC Family, on DirecTV."

Precise terms of the agreement were not disclosed.

DirecTV had threatened to drop ABC Family March 31 after balking at what it
termed was a network-proposed 35 percent rate increase.

R. Thomas Umstead

R. Thomas Umstead serves as senior content producer, programming for Multichannel News, Broadcasting + Cable and Next TV. During his more than 30-year career as a print and online journalist, Umstead has written articles on a variety of subjects ranging from TV technology, marketing and sports production to content distribution and development. He has provided expert commentary on television issues and trends for such TV, print, radio and streaming outlets as Fox News, CNBC, the Today show, USA Today, The New York Times and National Public Radio. Umstead has also filmed, produced and edited more than 100 original video interviews, profiles and news reports featuring key cable television executives as well as entertainers and celebrity personalities.