Dish Network failed to come to terms with Frontier Radio
Management for carriage of Fox affiliate WGXA Macon, Ga., and its digital
multicast ABC affiliate WGXA-D.
That is according to Dish, which sent out an e-mail early
Saturday morning to say that Frontier had declined to offer an extension to
keep the signals on the satellite operator's lineup.
"We've been working to reach a fair agreement with DISH
that would allow its subscribers to continue receiving both Fox24 and
ABC16. Unfortunately, to date, DISH has not accepted our offers of
resolution. Despite our best efforts to negotiate in good faith with DISH, we
do not have an agreement for carriage on DISH beginning January 1, 2011,"
the station said on its Web site.
"Frontier Radio Management...has blocked DISH Network
customers from accessing its channels after refusing to negotiate a fair
agreement before the contract expired at 12:01 a.m. ET Jan. 1, 2011," said
Dish in its statement. "DISH Network offered to extend the contract so
negotiations could continue, but Frontier Radio Management refused and demanded
more than double the current rate to bring the channels back. That's like
paying $7 a gallon for gas. It's unacceptable and irresponsible."
The American Television Alliance, of which Dish is a member,
Saturday said that continued retrans impasses argue for FCC intervention in theprocess.
The commission has telegraphed its plans to propose changes
to the retransmission consent process, at minimum clarifying the definition ofgood faith bargaining, which the FCC is expressly entitled to enforce.
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Contributing editor John Eggerton has been an editor and/or writer on media regulation, legislation and policy for over four decades, including covering the FCC, FTC, Congress, the major media trade associations, and the federal courts. In addition to Multichannel News and Broadcasting + Cable, his work has appeared in Radio World, TV Technology, TV Fax, This Week in Consumer Electronics, Variety and the Encyclopedia Britannica.