Media General and DISH Network have settled a retransmission-consent dispute that led to the blackout of 18 stations in 17 markets for about six weeks. The outlets have been restored, although terms of the agreement were not revealed.
DISH Network, during 2011 retransmission-consent negotiations with CBS, "deliberately chose to conceal" that it was developing its ad-skipping AutoHop DVR, CBS claims in a filing. Furthermore, CBS said it would not have agreed to the current terms if DISH had revealed the AutoHop was in the works, and therefore it should be allowed to void the retrans contract. The filing, which is part of a DISH-CBS copyright dispute, could lead to the network removing its programming from the satcaster's lineup if the retrans contract is voided.
Although stations chiefs are glad NBC has kept Jay Leno at the network, some are concerned that his new 10 p.m. nightly show may not provide a strong lead-in to their late-night newscasts and could be too similar to the "Tonight Show," set to be taken over by Conan O'Brien. "My [immediate] reaction is that no one's saying Leno will be a great program -- everyone's saying how much expense NBC has saved," said a Belo executive who supervises four NBC affiliates.
The Dish Network has so far failed to respond to a Citadel Communications Aug. 7 counteroffer for a retransmission consent deal for four Midwestern outlets, according to the broadcaster. The stations were pulled from the Dish Network on Aug. 1., after the two sides failed to reach a deal.