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Raycom Stations Dispute DirecTV Contract for “Fair Compensation”

In ABC, CBS, CW, FOX, MyTV, NBC, Raycom on December 23, 2010 at 10:00 am

It started simply enough: what looks to the untrained eye as a power play from Raycom Media to the nation’s largest satellite provider: charge a premium (referred to as “fair compensation” on many of the station’s websites) in exchange for being carried within the provider’s programming lineup.

What isn’t being disclosed: how much the conglomerate wants per station from DirecTV.

Here’s a list of stations involved in the dispute. Chances are, it will probably involve one you watch if you live in the southeastern United States.

From what’s been listed on several Raycom station websites, if negotiations aren’t reached by December 31, DirecTV will end up dropping the stations from its programming lineup. For example, if WAVE (NBC affiliate in Louisville, KY) is dropped, DirecTV cannot by federal law put another NBC affiliate in its place from a different DMA because of usage restrictions.

Here’s the notice from one such station, WTVM (ABC station in Columbus, GA).

And that means that, because Raycom says it needs “fair compensation” for the “millions of dollars it puts into its programming”, in the long run, the viewer is the one who ends up having to do without.

South TV News will keep on this as it continues to develop.

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