DirecTV and Tribune Broadcasting Stalemate Over Compensation Fees Causes Local Blackout Of Fox Channel 13; No American Idol For DirecTV Customers Tonight!

I want to watch Idol.  I am invested.  I have my favorites. Yes, I will survive without it, but I would prefer it didn’t disappear from my DirecTV guide.  Glee finally returns next week.  Bad timing is an understatement in this house.  Sorry kids.

Apparently DircTV and Tribune Broadcasting have been negotiating compensation fees for months. Tribune wants retransmission fees from DirecTV for carrying its Fox affiliates in 19 national markets, as well as the national cable channel WGN America.  In a Tribune press release, the company says in the past DirecTV has paid for WGN America, but claims DirecTV has not paid fees for broadcasting Tribune-owned Fox affiliates – local station q13 Fox included.

On Saturday DirecTV reported the two sides had reached a good faith agreement via telephone.  Tribune disputed the claim, saying a good faith (or handshake) agreement had not been reached on all negotiating points.  Without a deal in place, federal law prohibits DirecTV from carrying the signal of Tribune’s local tv stations.  When the old deal expired at 11:59PM, Saturday, March 31st, Tribune pulled its Fox, Joe TV and WGN stations from the Seattle market, which includes Snoqualmie Valley.

I wonder if either company will prevail as the perceived  good guy in this “battle of the wills.”  This is American television after all; and the blacked out stations carry some of the most popular tv shows.  It’s a virtual strike.  Tribune, give me my shows back. DirecTV, how about asking the consumer?  Reveal the potential increase and give the consumer a choice.  They may be willing to pay a little more per month to end this thing.

For the record, this won’t make me switch to Comcast.  Remember the January power outage?  Comcast customers with generators still didn’t have tv or internet.  On the other hand, once the snow/ice melted off my satellite dish,  I  had tv service – and my DSL internet stayed connected as well.


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Living Snoqualmie