WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, ATVA responded to Tuesday’s blackout of more than 60 local stations in 52 markets by TEGNA, impacting AT&T subscribers across the ...
Broadcasters often unilaterally remove their channels from TV lineups, blacking out content from cable and satellite subscribers. Broadcasters then hold their channels for ransom until TV providers agree to pay more – the same channels that are available free over-the-air. These payments to broadcasters for “free” TV– so-called retrans fees – have soared in recent years, going from $200 million in 2006 to $11.7 billion in 2019 (an astounding 5,359 percent increase). Retrans fees are padding broadcasters’ bottom lines and costing customers billions more every year with no sign of stopping. Retrans fees are the fastest rising part of your monthly pay TV bill.
In the last decade, Broadcasters have weaponized TV blackouts, targeting live sports and other must-see TV on channels like ABC, CBS, FOX and NBC to inflict maximum pain on innocent consumers.
The ATVA’s mission is simple: to give consumers a voice and protect them from abusive broadcaster behavior. We seek to reform outdated rules that harm consumers and do not reflect today’s competitive video marketplace. We are united in our determination to ensure the best viewing experience at an affordable price and to end the menace of intentional broadcaster blackouts.