Dish, Disney Agree to Extension

Blackout Averted as Talks Continue

Dish Network sidestepped a potential blackout of The Walt Disney Co. cable networks and ABC television stations Monday night, agreeing to extend the terms of the original deal as they worked on hashing out a new one.

In a terse statement at 8 p.m. Monday, Dish and Disney said jointly that they had agreed to a short-term extension while they worked on a new deal. Terms of the extension were not disclosed.

Disney Networks ESPN, the Disney Channel and ABC Family as well as owned and operated television stations in New York, Los Angeles, Chicago, Philadelphia, San Francisco, Houston, Raleigh-Durham and Fresno could have gone dark at 11:59 p.m. on Sept. 30, the time when their carriage deal expired.

While Dish customers will be assured of access to tonight’s Monday Night Football game on ESPN – a battle of two undefeated teams, the New Orleans Saints and the Miami Dolphins – Dish customers could still lose 18 Media General stations in 10 states, whose carriage deal will expire tonight at 11:59 p.m., unless a deal or an extension in reached.