Carriage blackouts costing cable nets millions | Media Analysis | Business | News | Rapid TV News
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A study from S&P Kagan Report has found that the prevalence of cord-cutting and the decline in cable network viewership has “complicated”, that is seen large financial losses, associated with carriage agreements between US cable network companies and traditional multichannel operators.
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Indeed, the TMT research unit of S&P Global Market Intelligence calculated in the Carriage Blackouts Cost Cable Nets Millions report, that the leading cable networks have lost about $179.5 million in affiliate fees since 2013 from cable carriage disputes that resulted in blackouts that were eventually resolved. In 2020 alone, cable network companies lost $18.4 million because of these disputes.

Cable network owners also risk affiliate revenue loss in hopes of producing a more favourable deal with traditional multichannel operators.

In its study a number of key battles stood out. Among these was the carriage dispute between Fox Corp. and DISH Network which made FOX Sports 1, FOX Sports 2, BTN and FOX Deportes go dark on DISH from 26 September 2019 to 6 October 2019. This was one of the higher-stakes cable carriage blackouts in recent years, with around $175.3 million of annual carriage fees left hanging.

The biggest affiliate revenue loss from a resolved cable carriage blackout in Kagan's database was between Viacom and Suddenlink Communications. The shortest resolved carriage blackout in Kagan's database was between Univision Communications and Charter Communications which lasted for just two days in February 2017.

The most recent addition to Kagan's database of resolved cable carriage blackouts was the December 2020 battle between Nexstar Media Group and DISH over the carriage of NewsNation.

Looking at individual networks, the Carriage Blackouts Cost Cable Nets Millions observed that The Weather Channel's 1,567-day blackout on Verizon Communications registered the largest loss from a resolved carriage dispute since 2013, with more than $31.5 million in lost carriage fees.