DirecTV, Hearst Still Talking

Hearst Television and DirecTV are apparently making some progress on their retransmission consent talks, after Hearst said it would extend its existing agreement with the satellite giant for a second time while negotiations continue.

DirecTV’s deal for Hearst’s 34 stations across the country officially expired on Dec. 31, but the broadcaster extended that agreement until today (Jan. 2) at 3 p.m.  Apparently the negotiations are progressing, because according to several Hearst station websites they have been extended yet again, to Friday, Jan. 3 at 3 p.m.

“The current agreement, which was set to expire at midnight on December 31, 2019, has been extended until 3pm (Eastern Time) on January 3, 2020,” Hearst’s Orlando, Florida NBC affiliate WESH said on its website. “Satellite distributors are prohibited by law from carrying broadcasters’ signals without their consent. The removal of WESH/WKCF’s signal from the DirecTV system will only result if negotiations between representatives of Hearst Television and DirecTV are unsuccessful. While we hope to conclude our negotiations before January 3rd, so as not to deprive any of our respective viewers and customers of our programming, we want to advise our viewers and customers that the possibility of non-renewal of our current agreement exists."