News

Broadcasters Usher in the New Year with Wave of Television Blackouts

 Broadcasters Pull the Plug on Consumers in 48 Markets

Washington, D.C. – A tidal wave of broadcaster blackouts hit consumers from coast to coast, as the calendar turned to 2017.  Broadcasters deliberately took down local channels in dozens of markets in 25 states across the country, leaving hundreds of thousands of innocent consumers without local programming.  Broadcasters pulled the plug on these loyal TV fans despite offers from some ATVA member companies to retroactively compensate broadcasters after reaching a new agreement; broadcasters selfishly refused, choosing instead to use the nuclear option, leaving viewers in the dark.

“Broadcasters ambushed innocent consumers on New Year’s Day with a tidal wave of television blackouts,” said American Television Alliance national spokesman Trent Duffy.  “Broadcast tycoons have brazenly and deliberately hijacked pay TV viewers once again, holding college football bowl games, the last weekend of the NFL’s regular season and network premiers for ransom in a naked ploy to extract more money from consumers.”

Outdated laws allow broadcasters to demand consumers pay higher and higher fees for ‘free’ TV.  When pay TV customers resist these often-massive rate increases, broadcasters yank stations off the air, holding their programming for ransom until consumers pay up.

“These brass knuckle tactics have no place in American society,” said Duffy.  “The FCC must consider the public interest in retransmission consent negotiations.  This wave of broadcaster blackouts is more evidence for why the FCC and Congress must act to protect consumers.”

Hundreds of thousands of pay TV consumers in the following communities are currently blacked out by local broadcasters: 

ATT/DIRECTV

Albuquerque-Santa Fe, NM; Baltimore, MD; Birmingham, AL; Boston, MA; Burlington, VT; Cincinnati, OH; Des Moines-Ames, IA; Fort Smith, AR; Greensboro-Winston-Salem, NC; Greenville-Spartanburg, SC-Asheville, NC; Harrisburg-Lancaster, PA; Jackson, MS; Kansas City, MO; Louisville, KY; Milwaukee, WI; Monterey-Salinas, CA; New Orleans, LA; Oklahoma City, OK; Omaha, NE; Orlando-Daytona, FL; Pittsburgh, PA; Portland-Auburn, ME; Sacramento-Stockton-Modesto, CA; Savannah, GA; Tampa-St. Petersburg, FL; West Palm Beach-Ft. Pierce, FL; Fort Myers-Naples, FL; Shreveport LA; Jacksonville FL

DISH

Oklahoma City, OK; Tulsa, OK

Altice

Spokane, ID

Frontier

Portland, OR; Seattle, WA; Raleigh/Durham, NC; Minneapolis, MN; Myrtle Beach, NC; Charleston, SC

Cable One

Idaho Falls, Pocatello and Lewiston, ID; Grenada and Cleveland, MS;

TV Blackout Crisis Continues as Broadcasters Rake In More Money from Viewers

TV blackouts hit a record in 2015, affecting more than 12 million Americans.  Since 2010, millions of Americans have seen dark screens instead of watching their favorite channels due to more than 600 broadcaster blackouts.  Blackouts have soared in the past five years.  ATVA began keeping track of broadcaster blackouts in 2010.  Since that time there have been:

  • 48 blackouts in 2017
  • 104 blackouts in 2016
  • 193 blackouts in 2015
  • 94 blackouts in 2014
  • 119 blackouts in 2013
  • 90 blackouts in 2012
  • 42 blackouts in 2011
  • 8 blackouts in 2010

When blackouts finally end, consumers get their programming back, but at a higher cost:

  • SNL Kagan also projects that over time over 50%of affiliates’ retrans payments will go to the networks.
  • SNL Kagan data shows that retrans fees are the fastest rising part of programming costs
  • According to an ATVA analysis of publicly available industry data and SNL Kagan data, fees have grown an astonishing 22,400% [no, that’s not a typo] since 2005 and more troubling, have seen 40% annual increases over the last 3 years.

###

The American Television Alliance (ATVA) brings together an unprecedented coalition of consumer groups, cable, satellite, telephone companies, and independent programmers to raise awareness about the risk TV viewers face as broadcasters increasingly threaten service disruptions that would deny viewers access to the programs they and their families enjoy.

For more information about ATVA, visit our website. Follow us on Twitter @ATVAlliance.

New Year’s Day TV Blackout Victimizes Mississippi and Idaho Viewers

Northwest Broadcasting Uses Nuclear Option in Bid to Raise TV Fees by Nearly 100%

WASHINGTON, DC — Hundreds of thousands of people in Idaho Falls, Pocatello, and Lewiston, Idaho, and Clarksdale, Winona, Yazoo, Grenada and Cleveland, Mississippi, who tried to tune into network TV this morning instead saw a black screen;  as Northwest Broadcasting used a well-worn but nuclear negotiation tactic by pulling its signal in a bid to jack up fees for viewers by nearly 100%.  A national television consumer group that tracks broadcaster-caused TV blackouts and has highlighted the pattern of abuse to the Federal Communications Commission and lawmakers immediately called for a restoration of service.

“Talk about a New Year’s Day hangover.  2017 is beginning just the way 2016 ended, with a wave of broadcaster blackouts of innocent consumers,” said American Television Alliance national spokesman Trent Duffy. “Today it’s Mississippi and Idaho, but it’s a national scourge and will only get worse unless Congress and the FCC do something about it.  We’re hopeful that President-elect Trump will stand up for TV fans and stare down the broadcaster behemoths who have gouged them for too long.”

“Broadcasters are using college football bowl games, the NFL playoffs and network premiers as leverage, holding their programming for ransom in a naked ploy for more money,” said Duffy.  “Broadcasters are demanding consumers pay massively more for ‘free’ TV.  Outdated laws allow broadcasters to bilk loyal TV viewers in a blackout shakedown:  Pay more or they yank your station off the air.  These brass knuckle tactics have no place in American society.   ATVA continues to make the case that the FCC must consider the public interest in retransmission consent negotiations.”

TV Blackout Crisis:  Blackouts Hit a Record in 2015 As Broadcasters Rake In More Money from Viewers

TV blackouts hit a record in 2015, affecting over 12 million Americans. Since 2010, millions of Americans have seen dark screens instead of watching their favorite channels due to nearly 600 broadcaster blackouts. Blackouts have soared in the past five years. ATVA began keeping track of broadcaster blackouts in 2010. Since that time there have been:

  • Over 100 Blackouts in 2016 (a year in which the FCC was actively investigating the problem)
  • 193 blackouts in 2015
  • 94 blackouts in 2014
  • 119 blackouts in 2013
  • 90 blackouts in 2012
  • 42 blackouts in 2011
  • 8 blackouts in 2010

When blackouts finally end, consumers get their programming back, but at a higher cost:

  • SNL Kagan also projects that over time over 50%of affiliates’ retrans payments will go to
    the networks.
  • SNL Kagan data shows that retrans fees are the fastest rising part of programming costs
  • According to an ATVA analysis of publicly available industry data and SNL Kagan data, fees have grown an astonishing 22,400% [no, that’s not a typo] since 2005 and more troubling, have seen 40% annual increases over the last 3 years.

###

The American Television Alliance (ATVA) brings together an unprecedented coalition of consumer groups, cable, satellite, telephone companies, and independent programmers to raise awareness about the risk TV viewers face as broadcasters increasingly threaten service disruptions that would deny viewers access to the programs they and their families enjoy.
For more information about ATVA, visit our website. Follow us on Twitter @ATVAlliance.

Big Broadcasters Blackout Christmas

A Wave of Broadcaster Blackouts set to Hit Families over the Holidays  

Washington, D.C. – The following statement can be attributed to ATVA national spokesman Trent Duffy:

“As families gather together this weekend to celebrate holiday traditions, big broadcasters have pulled the plug on tens of thousands of Pay-TV customers.  Broadcaster-initiated blackouts of local programming are underway in Baton Rouge, Tyler and Grand Junction and more are threatened in Seattle, Portland, Wilkes-Barre and New Orleans.  2016 is coming to a close just as it began, with a wave of broadcaster blackouts of innocent consumers.  This is even more evidence of why the FCC and Congress must act to reform a broken retransmission consent system.”

Broadcasters have pulled the plug on American consumers 102 times in 2016.  Network takedowns have spiked in recent years; in 2010 there were only eight black outs nationwide.

SNL Kagan predicts that retransmission-consent fees could nearly double in the next five years to $11.6 billion.  SNL Kagan predicts that stations will receive about $7.7 billion in retransmission consent fees in 2016, up about 20% from the $6.4 billion in 2015.

The American Television Alliance (ATVA) brings together an unprecedented coalition of consumer groups, cable, satellite, telephone companies, and independent programmers to raise awareness about the risk TV viewers face as broadcasters increasingly threaten service disruptions that would deny viewers access to the programs they and their families enjoy.

For more information about ATVA, visit our website. Follow us on Twitter @ATVAlliance.

Setting the Record Straight on ATSC 3.0: Put Consumers First

The American Television Alliance (ATVA) for the past five years has been the leading voice for consumers in the battle against skyrocketing retrans fees and egregious broadcaster TV blackouts.  In a recent filing with the Federal Communications Commission we raised a series of questions about a proposal known as ATSC 3.0 that could significantly raise the costs to consumers of receiving broadcast television either over-the-air or from a pay-TV provider.

If implemented properly, the proposal in question could have some important benefits to consumers, including access to higher quality 4K video and immersive sound, and more efficient spectrum.  This innovative technology is a good thing for consumers, and ATVA isn’t trying to stop it. In fact, ATVA is working with the FCC to weigh all of the significant factors, because that’s exactly what Americans deserve.

ATVA is just the latest in a wide range of diverse groups to weigh in on the new standard, including the National Association of Broadcasters own members, who have publicly expressed concerns about moving forward with the new standard.

Consumer advocate groups such as Public Knowledge have called on broadcasters to continue meeting their public interest obligations, regardless of changes to the technology used to deliver signals.  Other groups have also expressed concerns related to ATSC 3.0 recently.  Andrew Langer, President of the Institute for Liberty notes that the “first nationwide upgrade from analog to digital in 2009 wound up costing the federal government $1.3 billion in vouchers for low-income families.” Timothy Lee with the Center for Individual Freedom points out that “consumers who currently receive local stations over the air or via cable or satellite providers suddenly would face the possibility of incurring the cost of new equipment in order to receive the new signal.”

In addition to the fees that consumers could incur as a result of purchasing new equipment, ATSC 3.0 carriage could be leveraged by broadcasters to extract yet even more retrans fees that could be passed on to consumers.  Those concerns and the others impacting access and consumer cost burdens should all give us pause to consider their full impact.

Fees charged by broadcasters to transmit what is supposed to be free over the air signals are the fastest rising part of consumers’ TV bills.  Broadcasters have increased total retransmission consent fees more than 22,000 percent since 2005, according to publicly available data.  SNL Kagan, for example, predicts that retransmission consent fees will total more than $11.6 billion in the next five years.

We have to take the Ronald Reagan approach in this case: “Trust but verify.”  This is a very big deal for everyone who watches TV in the United States and will have major implications for consumer costs and access.  And for this reason, ATVA has pledged to work with the FCC to ensure that costs associated with the transition to ATSC 3.0 do not fall at the feet of consumers.

We welcome a conversation with the NAB and federal regulators to address the concerns for consumers that we put forward in our recent filing.

Trent Duffy is the National Spokesman for the American Television Alliance, a coalition of consumer groups, cable, satellite, telephone companies and independent programmers raising awareness about why TV blackouts are happening and what can be done to stop them.  

ATVA Applauds FCC Enforcement Action Against Sinclair

Broadcaster Violated Good Faith Negotiation Obligations

 Washington, D.C. – The American Television Alliance (ATVA) responded today to the Federal Communications Commission’s enforcement action against the Sinclair Broadcast Group.  The broadcaster agreed to pay $9,495,000 to settle multiple allegations and complaints that it violated its good faith negotiation obligations by engaging in prohibited joint negotiations. 

ATVA national spokesman Trent Duffy commented on the FCC’s enforcement action against Sinclair:    

“The American Television Alliance applauds today’s enforcement action by the FCC.  Today’s action sends a strong message of deterrence to the broadcast industry that rule breaking and bad faith will not be tolerated.”

 The American Television Alliance (ATVA) brings together an unprecedented coalition of consumer groups, cable, satellite, telephone companies, and independent programmers to raise awareness about the risk TV viewers face as broadcasters increasingly threaten service disruptions that would deny viewers access to the programs they and their families enjoy.

For more information about ATVA, visit our website. Follow us on Twitter @ATVAlliance.

 

 

Tribune Broadcasting Pulls the Plug on Millions of Consumers in the Largest TV Blackout this Year

Consumer Blackout Affects TV Viewers in 34 States and D.C.
ATVA Urges FCC to Act to Protect Consumers from Further Harm   

Washington, D.C. – The American Television Alliance (ATVA) today urged the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) to take action to protect consumers from a massive consumer blackout affecting millions of DISH customers from coast-to-coast.  On Sunday evening, Tribune Broadcasting Company rejected a proposal that would have kept local channels up for consumers.  Instead Tribune chose to pull the plug on 42 local channels for pay-TV consumers in 34 states and the District of Columbia.  

ATVA national spokesman Trent Duffy commented on the largest consumer TV blackout this year:     

“Tribune Broadcasting is holding the NBA Finals, the Tony Awards, the Stanley Cup Final and scores of other popular programs for ransom in a brazen attempt to get consumers to pay more money for channels that are available for free over the air.  

“Tribune Broadcasting Company is depriving hundreds of thousands of families of some of the biggest and most anticipated events of the year.  Musical fans will miss Broadway’s biggest night; hockey fans will be in the dark; and kids and NBA fans across America won’t be able to watch LeBron James play Steph Curry.    

“There is only one party responsible for this blackout and that is the Tribune Broadcasting Company.  Tribune alone has the power to restore its signal and stop hurting consumers.  This massive consumer blackout – the largest blackout this year – is more compelling evidence of why the FCC must act on retrans reform to protect innocent consumers.       

“Outdated laws allow broadcasters to fleece loyal TV viewers in a blackout shakedown: pay more or they yank your station off the air.  The FCC is currently examining these abusive broadcaster tactics and the Commission is poised to take strong action to protect consumers.

“We urge the Commission to act swiftly on ATVA’s retrans reform proposals – to prevent forced bundling and blackouts immediately before marquee events – and protect fans and loyal TV viewers from further harm.”

Nationwide, broadcasters pulled the plug on American consumers 193 times in 2015, a new single-calendar year record.  Network takedowns have surged over the past five years; in 2010 there were only eight black outs across the country.   TV Blackouts affected 12 million American homes – one of every eight pay TV subscribers – in 2015.    

  • 62 Blackouts to date in 2016
  • 193 blackouts in 2015
  • 94 blackouts in 2014
  • 119 blackouts in 2013
  • 90 blackouts in 2012
  • 42 blackouts in 2011
  • 8 blackouts in 2010

###

The American Television Alliance (ATVA) brings together an unprecedented coalition of consumer groups, cable, satellite, telephone companies, and independent programmers to raise awareness about the risk TV viewers face as broadcasters increasingly threaten service disruptions that would deny viewers access to the programs they and their families enjoy.

For more information about ATVA, visit our website. Follow us on Twitter @ATVAlliance.

 

 

 

TV Blackouts Driving Record Retrans Fees

Retrans, Reverse Compensation at CBS to Exceed $1 Billion in 2016

Washington, D.C. – The American Television Alliance (ATVA) today reacted to a recent report in USA TODAY that CBS revenue is up 20 percent during the first quarter of 2016, largely because of the retrans fees it charges pay-TV providers to broadcast its signal.  According to TV News Check, an industry trade publication, CBS will top $1 billion in retrans fees and reverse compensation in 2016. 

ATVA spokesman Michael Hacker commented on the CBS earnings report:

“Each broadcasters’ quarterly earnings report is further confirmation that the retrans cash grab is driving the TV blackout crisis.  Last year, broadcasters pulled the plug on pay-TV viewers 193 times, a new single-calendar year record.  Now yet another broadcaster announces record earnings powered by higher retrans fees; it is easy to do the math.    

For many months, the FCC has been working to update its rules to protect consumers from the menace of TV blackouts.  The time for study is over; it is time for the Commission to take decisive action to protect the public interest and stop the harm caused by the blackout crisis.” 

TV Blackout Crisis:  Blackouts Hit a Record in 2015 As Broadcasters Rake In More Money from Viewers

TV blackouts hit a record in 2015, affecting over 12 million Americans. Since 2010, millions of Americans have seen dark screens instead of watching their favorite channels due to nearly 600 broadcaster blackouts. Blackouts have soared in the past five years. ATVA began keeping track of broadcaster blackouts in 2010. Since that time there have been:

  • 26 Blackouts to date in 2016
  • 193 blackouts in 2015
  • 94 blackouts in 2014
  • 119 blackouts in 2013
  • 90 blackouts in 2012
  • 42 blackouts in 2011
  • 8 blackouts in 2010

When blackouts finally end, consumers get their programming back, but at a higher cost:

  • SNL Kagan also projects that over time over 50% of affiliates’ retrans payments will go to the networks.
  • SNL Kagan data shows that retrans fees are the fastest rising part of programming costs
  • According to an ATVA analysis of publicly available industry data and SNL Kagan data, fees have grown an astonishing 22,400% [no, that’s not a typo] since 2005 and more troubling, have seen 40% annual increases over the last 3 years.

###

The American Television Alliance (ATVA) brings together an unprecedented coalition of consumer groups, cable, satellite, telephone companies, and independent programmers to raise awareness about the risk TV viewers face as broadcasters increasingly threaten service disruptions that would deny viewers access to the programs they and their families enjoy.

For more information about ATVA, visit our website. Follow us on Twitter @ATVAlliance.

ICYMI: “Free” TV Keeps Getting More Expensive

CBS Retrans, Reverse Compensation to Exceed 2.5 billion
$500 Million Increase in Projections

Washington, D.C. – The American Television Alliance (ATVA) today reacted to a recent report in Multichannel News that CBS expects the broadcaster to generate “$2.5 billion in retransmission consent and reverse compensation revenue by 2020, a $500 million increase from its previous forecasts.”

ATVA spokesman Michael Hacker commented on CBS’s stunning announcement:

“The retrans revenue grab is driving the blackout crisis and pushing up pay TV customers’ bills.  Despite a record number of TV blackouts in 2015 and an ongoing FCC investigation into broadcaster abuses, CBS executives continue to gorge themselves at the retrans trough.  Retrans fees are increasing at an unsustainable rate – 40 percent increases each of the last three years.  This trend will continue and consumers will continue to pay the price until Congress fixes our broken video laws that rig the game in the favor of big broadcasters.” 

TV Blackout Crisis:  Blackouts Hit a Record in 2015 As Broadcasters Rake In More Money from Viewers

TV blackouts hit a record in 2015, affecting over 12 million Americans. Since 2010, millions of Americans have seen dark screens instead of watching their favorite channels due to nearly 600 broadcaster blackouts. Blackouts have soared in the past five years. ATVA began keeping track of broadcaster blackouts in 2010. Since that time there have been:

  • 26 Blackouts to date in 2016
  • 193 blackouts in 2015
  • 94 blackouts in 2014
  • 119 blackouts in 2013
  • 90 blackouts in 2012
  • 42 blackouts in 2011
  • 8 blackouts in 2010

When blackouts finally end, consumers get their programming back, but at a higher cost:

  • SNL Kagan also projects that over time over 50% of affiliates’ retrans payments will go to the networks.
  • SNL Kagan data shows that retrans fees are the fastest rising part of programming costs
  • According to an ATVA analysis of publicly available industry data and SNL Kagan data, fees have grown an astonishing 22,400% [no, that’s not a typo] since 2005 and more troubling, have seen 40% annual increases over the last 3 years.

###

The American Television Alliance (ATVA) brings together an unprecedented coalition of consumer groups, cable, satellite, telephone companies, and independent programmers to raise awareness about the risk TV viewers face as broadcasters increasingly threaten service disruptions that would deny viewers access to the programs they and their families enjoy.

For more information about ATVA, visit our website. Follow us on Twitter @ATVAlliance.

 

 

 

ICYMI: “Free” TV Keeps Getting More Expensive

“Retrans Gravy Train Keeps Rolling”

Retrans Revenue up 84 Percent for Gray Television; up 40 percent for Nexstar Broadcasting

Washington, D.C. – The American Television Alliance (ATVA) today reacted to earnings announcements from two major broadcast ownership groups, Gray Television and Nexstar Broadcasting Group, which each announced massive retransmission consents revenue increases: 

“[Gray’s] retransmission consent revenue increased $18.0 million, or 84%, to $39.5 million from 2014 to 2015,” [TV News Check, 2/26/16].
[Nexstar’s] retransmission consent income grew 40% [TV News Check 2/26/16].

ATVA spokesman Michael Hacker commented on the massive increases in retrans fees: 

“The retrans gravy train keeps rolling for the broadcast industry as they continue to charge more and more for broadcast signals that are “free” over the air.  Congress has a duty to fix our broken video laws that rig the game in the favor of the big special interests at the expense of American consumers.  We are glad that it took the first step of directing the FCC to examine “good faith” negotiating rules, and the brass knuckle tactics used by broadcasters to extort consumers.  But that is not enough:  Congress cannot allow broadcasters to use viewers as pawns while they line their pockets with outrageous TV fees.”

TV Blackout Crisis: Blackouts Hit a Record in 2015 As Broadcasters Rake In More Money from Viewers

TV blackouts hit a record in 2015, affecting over 12 million Americans. Since 2010, millions of Americans have seen dark screens instead of watching their favorite channels due to nearly 600 broadcaster blackouts. Blackouts have soared in the past five years. ATVA began keeping track of broadcaster blackouts in 2010. Since that time there have been:

  • 26 Blackouts to date in 2016
  • 193 blackouts in 2015
  • 94 blackouts in 2014
  • 119 blackouts in 2013
  • 90 blackouts in 2012
  • 42 blackouts in 2011
  • 8 blackouts in 2010

When blackouts finally end, consumers get their programming back, but at a higher cost:

  • SNL Kagan also projects that over time over 50% of affiliates’ retrans payments will go to the networks.
  • SNL Kagan data shows that retrans fees are the fastest rising part of programming costs
  • According to an ATVA analysis of publicly available industry data and SNL Kagan data, fees have grown an astonishing 22,400% [no, that’s not a typo] since 2005 and more troubling, have seen 40% annual increases over the last 3 years.

###

The American Television Alliance (ATVA) brings together an unprecedented coalition of consumer groups, cable, satellite, telephone companies, and independent programmers to raise awareness about the risk TV viewers face as broadcasters increasingly threaten service disruptions that would deny viewers access to the programs they and their families enjoy.

For more information about ATVA, visit our website. Follow us on Twitter @ATVAlliance.

 

CBS Chief Says Record Year for Blackouts Shows Consumers are Winning???

“It’s no wonder Mr. Moonves is trying to create a distraction after one of his affiliates just threatened to blackout the Super Bowl”

 Washington, D.C. – The American Television Alliance today responded to the outrageous comments made by CBS Chief Les Moonves to the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) in a recent Ex Parte Filing.  According to Broadcasting & Cable, Mr. Moonves said “the consumer is the winner” for the first time since the 1992 Cable Act was passed despite broadcasters pulling the plug on one out of every eight consumers in 2015, a record year for blackouts. “It’s no wonder Mr. Moonves is trying to create a distraction after one of his affiliates just threatened to blackout the Super Bowl” said Trent Duffy, ATVA spokesman.  “It’s apparent that broadcasters see the writing on the wall as their years of bilking consumers for more cash are finally coming to an end.  Regardless of what the NAB or any of its allies want you to believe, the system is stacked against consumers and that’s why Congress directed the FCC to investigate the years of broadcaster abuse.” Mr. Moonves also claimed that MVPD’s are finally getting a taste of “the rough and tumble of the marketplace” despite the fact that broadcasters have the ultimate leverage when it comes to pulling a signal during retrans negotiations. “The truth of the matter is that the marketplace is currently failing consumers,” said Duffy.  “The billions of dollars in free spectrum broadcasters receive each year from the government means they have a responsibility to serve the public interest.  Pulling the plug on consumers ahead of the Super Bowl is hardly in the public’s interest.”

TV Blackout Crisis:  Blackouts Hit a Record in 2015 As Broadcasters Rake In More Money from Viewers

TV blackouts hit a record in 2015, affecting over 12 million Americans. Since 2010, millions of Americans have seen dark screens instead of watching their favorite channels due to nearly 600 broadcaster blackouts. Blackouts have soared in the past five years. ATVA began keeping track of broadcaster blackouts in 2010. Since that time there have been:

  • 26 Blackouts to date in 2016
  • 193 blackouts in 2015
  • 94 blackouts in 2014
  • 119 blackouts in 2013
  • 90 blackouts in 2012
  • 42 blackouts in 2011
  • 8 blackouts in 2010

When blackouts finally end, consumers get their programming back, but at a higher cost:

  • SNL Kagan also projects that over time over 50% of affiliates’ retrans payments will go to the networks.
  • SNL Kagan data shows that retrans fees are the fastest rising part of programming costs
  • According to an ATVA analysis of publicly available industry data and SNL Kagan data, fees have grown an astonishing 22,400% [no, that’s not a typo] since 2005 and more troubling, have seen 40% annual increases over the last 3 years.

###

The American Television Alliance (ATVA) brings together an unprecedented coalition of consumer groups, cable, satellite, telephone companies, and independent programmers to raise awareness about the risk TV viewers face as broadcasters increasingly threaten service disruptions that would deny viewers access to the programs they and their families enjoy. For more information about ATVA, visit our website. Follow us on Twitter @ATVAlliance.