Cable Fee Fight Takes Another Turn as Dish Networks Uses iTunes, Netflix and Amazon as Weapons
Originally published: May 7, 2012
Last updated: May 7, 2012 - 10:03pm
The basic contours of the TV programmer versus pay-TV provider fight are fundamental and unchanging: The programmer tries to get more money for his stuff, the pay-TV provider says that’s too much, and the two sides chest-bump for a while.
Eventually they settle, and you, the pay-TV customer, ends up paying more. And that’s what’s happening in the latest dustup between Dish Networks, the satellite TV service, and AMC Networks, the programmers now best known as the guys who bring you “Mad Men,” “The Walking Dead” and “Breaking Bad.” The slight twist here: For argument’s sake, at least, Dish is saying that because AMC is selling digital versions of those shows to other outlets, its hit shows are worth less to Dish subscribers. “It’s actually devalued,” says Dish chairman Charlie Ergen. The fact that networks are selling or giving away their stuff online has been a minor but growing issue in carriage fights for a while now. But this is the biggest stink that a cable/pay TV provider has made about it, at least in public.
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