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September 11, 2019
DirecTV may lose ESPN, Monday Night Football
AT&T TV NOW & DIRECTV might lose ESPN, Freeform, & The Disney Channel
If you have DirecTV, you are in the middle of a corporate battle, and you may not have Monday Night Football next month.
ESPN has begun warning viewers that its channels could soon exit AT&T platforms, including the DirecTV satellite service.
The crux of the stalemate: DirecTV wants to pay less, and ESPN wants to be paid more.
As noted by John Ourand of Sports Business Journal, the spots began during Week One of Monday Night Football, and they have continued.
“We have a responsibility to make our viewers aware of the potential loss of our programming,” ESPN told Ourand. AT&T had a predictably different view: “We’re disappointed to see The Walt Disney Co. put their viewers into the middle of negotiations.”
AT&T sent out this statement about the possible blackout: “We’re disappointed to see The Walt Disney Co. put their viewers into the middle of negotiations. We are on the side of consumer choice and value and want to keep Disney channels and owned-and-operated local ABC stations in eight cities in our customers’ lineups. We hope to avoid any interruption to the services some of our customers care about. Our goal is always to deliver the content our customers want at a value that also makes sense to them. We’ll continue to fight for that here and appreciate their patience while we work this matter out.”
The loss of ESPN channels during football season would piss-off thousands of sports fans who may find themselves listening to Monday Night Football on the radio. Prayers, indeed.
Ran DeBord - All Access Sporting News
Some content sourced and verified from: AASNSports; AT&T; ESPN
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