DirecTV drops 17 Viacom Networks - Includes Nick, MTV, VH1, Comedy Central and more

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(Best Syndication News) - DirecTV said that they were unable to reach an agreement with Viacom to keep their channels on the air while they negotiate a new contract. The channels that DirecTV pulled from the air include Nickelodeon, MTV, Comedy Central, and 14 other channels.

Viacom is reporting that 26 channels have been removed off DirecTV’s service. However, this is counting the HDTV and regular versions, which are airing the same content. The channels that were removed are Palladia, Centric, Tr3s, CMT, Logo, NickToons, VH1 Classic, TeenNick, Nick Jr., Nick@Nite, Spike, BET, VH1, TV Land, Comedy Central, Nick, and MTV.

DirecTV’s executive vice president of Content, Strategy and Development, Derek Chang, said that Viacom wanted DirecTV to pay 30 percent more, which he said is an additional $1 billion. Chang explained that DirecTV received a letter last night from Viacom saying that they must cease airing their channels by midnight or they will pursue legal action.

DirecTV suggested breaking up the channel offerings so that their customers could pick and chose which ones they wanted to watch. Customers do not watch many of the channels, yet they still have to pay for them because Viacom bundles them for DirecTV.

To ease the pain of losing these channels, DirecTV is making eight Encore Channels (including Encore Family) available to all residential customers through July 31. These channels are broadcast on 535 to 542. DirecTV is also offering two Mix Channels, which are geared toward children.

DirecTV is trying to keep the costs of their service down. They point out that their competitor, Dish Network, is going through something similar when they lost airing rights for AMC Networks.

DirecTV estimates that they will reach an agreement with Viacom soon.

By: Nancy Connors
Entertainment Reporter





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