Perhaps in response to DirecTV’s comment that broadcast station groups “ransom” their content during retransmission consent battles, Raycom Media returned the favor, pointing out that the nation’s largest satellite TV service provider is hardly in a positon to cry poverty.
Raycom Media and DirecTV reached an agreement in principle on Sept. 7 regarding the broadcaster’s 43 stations in 37 markets mostly in the south. The deal was made after Raycom pulled its signals for the stations on Sept. 1. In announcing the deal DirecTV thanked its customers for their patience, but added that “Raycom’s intentional recent blackouts of Dish, Cox and now DirecTV customers creates an even greater sense of urgency for lawmakers to review and overhaul tis anti-consumer retransmission consent process once and for all.”
Raycom apparently took exception to that characterization and in a “fact sheet” sent via the National Association of Broadcasters Monday, pointed out the following:
- “DirecTV earned $2.3 Billion dollars in 2013, and their profits were up 14%, yet they profess to be ‘fighting to hold costs down for their subscribers.’
- DirecTV has removed stations from its lineup at least 12 times in the last 3 years as a negotiating and political tactic, including another broadcaster, just last week.
- Since our last agreement with DirecTV, Raycom Media has successfully negotiated more than 200 agreements without disruption to our viewers. That's a 99% success rate.
- In the history of our company only 3 providers have removed our stations from their system-DirecTV being one of them.
- Raycom Media looks forward to working with DirecTV to turn our agreement in principle into a final, fully-binding document. We fully support the terms both parties agreed to Sunday and hope DirecTV will too.”