Radio and TV Talk

Rodney Ho covers TV and radio, from Atlanta’s stations to the hottest “American Idol" news.

Dish Network drops NFL Network, WGN America


NFL Network

By RODNEY HO/, originally filed Thursday, June 16, 2016

Over the years, Dish Network has been the lowest price option among cable and satellite companies, partly because they drive hard bargains with networks.

They are currently grappling with two carriage disputes at once. First up last week was Tribune Broadcasting. Its local stations were  pulled out of 33 markets (not affecting Atlanta). WGN America was taken off all Dish Network services, including those in Atlanta.

Today at 7 p.m., Dish dropped NFL Network & NFL RedZone. The NFL said this is the first time the service has ever been taken off the air.

Most Dish subscribers probably won't care right now. WGN America does not draw huge numbers and offers very little original programming. And it's off season for the NFL.

Dish has about 12 million subscribers but does not identify how many in Atlanta. Given the size of the metro area, though, that has to be at least 150,000 households.

In press statements, Dish complained that Tribune is asking for “significant price increases” for its stations and is trying to "force bundle" WGN America, which it describes asa  WGN as “an unrelated and low-performing cable channel.”

Tribune says it's offering Dish the same deal it offers other carriers.


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About the Author

Rodney Ho covers radio and television for the Atlanta Journal-Constitution.

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