UPDATED: The countdown to New Year’s eve is on, and so are the countdowns to a couple of possible channel blackouts as a number of carriage agreements expire at midnight on Dec. 31. Comcast’s E! and Style just issued a statement warning viewers that the two networks may go dark on DISH Network. Also tomorrow night, another satcaster, DirecTV, could drop the Golf Channel. Additionally, Sinclair’s 33 broadcast stations face blackout on Time Warner Cable systems as the two companies continue to be at odds over retransmission consent fees. Meanwhile, another station group, Hearst, just reached a last-minute agreement with DirecTV, so its 29 broadcast stations will remain on the DirecTV systems into the new year. Here is E! and Style’s statement:
We are in active negotiations with DISH Network. We are trying to reach a fair agreement, however, it is our belief they will once again turn their backs on their subscribers by dropping the networks and holding E! and Style fans hostage. In actively choosing to discontinue these two networks, Dish is denying their subscribers E!, the ultimate network for entertainment fans with marquee January events from exclusive coverage of Red Carpet season to the premiere of the new season of the Kardashian show Kourtney & Kim Take NY, and Style, the home of transformations, from fashion, to beauty to home, featuring all-new seasons of Kimora and Jerseylicious.
TV Editor Nellie Andreeva - tip her here.