For those of you who hate annoying double scrollbars during hockey games, I have some bad news. Comcast SportsNet Mid-Atlantic and Dish Network have agreed merely to a short-term contract extension.
Sure, it avoids a blackout that would have affected 4.7 million households throughout the Washington, D.C. and Baltimore area. And sure, it allows fans to keep watching the hockey and basketball they love. But it also opens up the potential for more bickering and politicking before the current deal ends, which appears to be kind of soon.
So what was the issue? In summary, Comcast and Dish Network have been fighting over an increase in carriage license fees. The agreement was set to expire at midnight Monday, with Dish balking at CSN’s asking price and being all like “nuh uh, you crazy.”
The dispute also involves CSN [Chicago], CSN Bay Area (San Francisco-Oakland) and CSN California (Northern California and parts of Oregon and Nevada), all of which will remain on Dish for now, executives said.
Sources familiar with the negotiations say NBCUniversal, which operates the regional sports networks after being acquired by Comcast last year, is seeking a 10 percent increase across the four markets. Dish has pegged the proposed increase at closer to 40 percent.
Dish, which is a value-priced service, has been actively fighting large increases in cable network license fees, especially when dealing with regional sports networks. In August, Dish dropped CSN New England after a series of extensions and is currently in a vicious fight with CBS.
Tuesday morning, CSN Mid-Atlantic updated its propaganda site iwantcsnma.com, with a short blurb on a splash page.
Thank you for supporting Comcast SportsNet. We have a short-term extension, and Comcast SportsNet will continue to be available to Dish customers.
So yay, I guess. No more commercials, promotions, and websites. Just hockey and basketball. For now.
Russian Machine Never Breaks is not associated with the Washington Capitals; Monumental Sports, the NHL, or its properties. Not even a little bit.
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