EL SEGUNDO, Calif., July 10, 2012 – DIRECTV customers were left without Nickelodeon, MTV, Comedy Central and 14 other channels today, after Viacom dropped its networks from DIRECTV at approximately midnight EDT. DIRECTV executives reached out to Viacom both yesterday and today with a new proposal and a request to keep the channels on while we continued to negotiate, but never heard back, so DIRECTV had to comply with their demand to take the channels down or face legal action.
“We have been very willing to get a deal done, but Viacom is pushing DIRECTV customers to pay more than a 30 percent increase, which equates to an extra $1 billion, despite the fact that the ratings for many of their main networks have plummeted and much of Viacom’s programming can be seen for free online,” said Derek Chang, DIRECTV executive vice president of Content, Strategy and Development. “Viacom sent us a letter last night that outlined our obligations to remove the channels by midnight or face legal action just as they were falsely telling viewers DIRECTV was responsible. Let’s be clear, Viacom took these channels away from DIRECTV viewers.”
Here, in Upstate NY where I live, our only choices are setting up a roof-top antenna, DirecTV or DishTV since we have no access to cable!