The broadcaster’s 13 TV stations — mostly in Arizona, California, Colorado, Oregon, Idaho, and Texas – returned to DirecTV today after going dark on October 9. The companies indicated that they were making progress this week when the satellite company aired Fox broadcasts of the first two World Series games. News-Press & Gazette said on the KESQ website that while negotiators had honed in on a monthly rate that DirecTV would pay for the stations “the big hang-up continues to be DirecTV’s unprecedented demand for the right to stream each of our stations’ signals on the internet without paying a fair price.” No word today on the terms of the deal. DirecTV says that while it’s “pleased NPG has restored the stations, we’re equally as frustrated that they took them away in the first place.” It seized the opportunity to call on Congress to “intervene and fix this badly broken system that has enabled some stations to use viewers’ loyalty against them rather than reward them for it.” News-Press’ network affiliates include ABC outlets in Palm Springs and Santa Barbara, CA; Colorado Springs and Grand Junction, CO.; Idaho Falls, ID; Columbia, MO; and El Paso, TX.
Family run News-Press & Gazette has a relatively small chain of 13 stations mostly in Arizona, California, Colorado, Oregon, Idaho, and Texas. But the contract impasse with the No. 1 satellite company may affect ABC: News-Press’ network affiliates include ABC outlets in Palm Springs and Santa Barbara, CA; Colorado Springs and Grand Junction, CO.; Idaho Falls, ID; Columbia, MO; and El Paso, TX. The stations went dark today on DirecTV, as negotiations that continued after the previous deal expired on September 30 finally fell apart. “The core dispute between DIRECTV and the Stations involves (1) the price DIRECTV is willing to pay the each Station for the right to re-sell the each Station’s signal and (2) DIRECTV’s demand for the right to place the Stations’ signals on the Internet without paying the Station a fair price,” Gulf California Broadcasting General Manager Mike Stutz said in a post on KESQ’s website. DirecTV says that the broadcasters want “more than triple the price we currently pay to retransmit their ‘free’ TV signals. We simply won’t accept a price increase of this magnitude that would have to be passed on to our customers.”