With Univision Communications’ dispute with Dish Network about to exit its second week with seemingly no end in sight, the broadcaster has taken to the airwaves and social media to inform its viewers of other ways they can watch its programming, including via cable, telco and its own over-the-top service Univision Now.
Univision networks went dark to Dish subscribers across the country on June 30, after the two could not reach a carriage agreement. Univision has said it offered Dish a two-week extension when its previous contract expired – which would have allowed viewers to watch the channels while negotiations continued – but the satellite giant refused.
What has resulted is a war of words in the past 13 days, with Dish claiming Univision channels are lightly watched and Univision alleging that the satellite TV service provider is providing subscribers with misleading information.
While Dish has tweaked Univision for failing to secure Spanish-language rights o the World Cup, and Univision has claimed blackouts are becoming a negotiating tactic for Dish, money is at the heart of the matter. Dish claims that Univision is demanding a 75% increase in affiliate fees for channels that have lost a large chunk of their audience, while Univision insists that its content is widely viewed by a growing and key demographic within Dish’s service territory.
“Given that Dish has not engaged in productive discussions since we offered an extension on June 30 and that they continue to mischaracterize the state of negotiations, we are now informing our viewers of other ways they can access the Univision news, entertainment and sports programming they are missing,” Univision said in a statement. “Based on Dish’s track record, we are concerned that the blackout of services appears to be a common tactic for this company. Univision stands ready to receive an offer from Dish that does not devalue our Spanish-language content relative to our English-language peers.”
Univision also is providing links to other providers like Comcast, Cox, DirecTV, DirecTV Now and Charter via its website. Customers also can call 1-800-500-4252 for information on other providers or to contact Dish.